Atomic’s top Cloud model usually mimics the technology of the latest Redster race skis, and so it is with the Cloud C14 WB Revo. “Revo” refers to Atomic’s new race damping system, a series of steel plates floating on a viscoelastic foundation. The “WB” means Wide Body, and at 75mm underfoot, the Cloud C14 WB Revo is by Realskiers’ definition a Frontside ski, which suggests that somewhere in Europe there’s a Cloud C14 Revo that isn’t “WB.”
The three other Cloud models in the 21/22 collection all belong in the Technical genre, but only the Cloud C12 Servo merits an expert’s interest. Both the C14 and C12 are fully cambered, Titanal-laden, fall-line loving chargers that do not stoop to conquer.
To give you an idea of what a steal the Bent Chetler 100 was when it was introduced three years ago, Atomic understandably raised its retail price by $100 a year later, and it was still the best value in the category. But the Bent Chetler 100 is more than just a good deal; it’s a wonderfully versatile ski that’s as easy to ski in off-trail conditions as any AMW model at any price.
The key to the Bent Chetler 100’s charms is its Horizon Tech tip and tail which are rockered on both axes. By crowning its extremities, the littler Chetler feels like it can drift in any direction on a whim without losing control of trajectory. When in its element, it’s the epitome of ease, rolling over terrain like a spatula over icing.
The Bent Chetler 100 is all about freedom of expression rather than the tyranny of technical turns. So what if its liberty-loving tip doesn’t want to show up early in the turn? That’s not its shtick. It has talents Technical skis never imagined, like throwing it in reverse off a precipice. It’s light, it’s easy to pivot and it’s wide enough to float in two feet of fresh. If you evaluate the Bent Chetler 100 for what it does rather than what it isn’t meant to do, it’s an all-star in a league of its own.
The Maverick 100 Ti’s special sauce is the combined effect of its double-rockered baseline (25/60/15), tapered tip and unique HRZN Tech Tip that’s rockered on both axes. Atomic calls this combo the ski’s Flow Profile, a good term for how a ski meets the snow. In the case of the Maverick 100 Ti, the front rocker reveals a decided preference for off-trail skiing, sacrificing early connection at the top of the turn on firm snow for a better buffer when barging through cut-up crud.
The 100 Ti is the best of the new Mavericks at drifting, able to smudge over loose, sloppy snow whether meeting it head-on, sideways or somewhere in between. It also has a bit more metal than its bros by dint of its added surface area, so it surprisingly holds a better edge on sheer surfaces than its skinnier siblings. Because its front rocker shortens its effective contact length by 25%, the Maverick 100 Ti is one of the rare AMW models for which we suggest grown males consider a 188cm.
Even though they’re a great leap ahead of the Vantage Pro Lite series they replace, the Maverick models are still an exercise in minimalism. Atomic underscores how the Mavericks are built with “only the essential materials.” True enough, and the Maverick 100 Ti has enough of the essentials to earn a Recommended medallion in the hotly competitive AMW genre.