[Neither the Cloud 12 nor its scores have changed since this review was posted two seasons ago.] There isn’t an ounce of condescension in Atomic’s Cloud 12. Of course it doesn’t meet FIS specs, but that’s the whole point of the Technical category, to apply race room production to more versatile shapes. It retains two game-changing features that separate it, behaviorally, from the rest of the field. The first feature to catch the eye is a rod that runs from under the binding, where it’s anchored in an elastomer base, to roughly the center of the forebody. Called Servotec, the rod is pre-stressed, so its rest position is already exerting down force on the front of the ski. When the ski is bowed during a turn, the tension on the rod relaxes; when the load on the ski is released, the rod’s recoil snaps the ski back on the snow, making edge changes feel both super accurate and totally magical. The Cloud 12 isn’t made for the lackadaisical carver who wants to hang out on the tail end of a turn long enough to check her messages. The second self-evident feature that helps define the Cloud 12’s behavior is its svelte shape. This streamlined rocket thinks of recreational runs as another opportunity to win something, taking off down the fall line as if suddenly freed from a bad relationship.
Full Review with test scores available on members’ site.