Atomic Bent Chetler (2014)
With its 117-mm waist, the returning Automatic is the fattest "directional" powder ski Atomic makes. It's heavily rockered in the tip (more than 30 percent of the ski's length) and moderately rockered in the tail, for maximum deep-snow flotation and easy handling. Tapering in the tip and tail also contribute to a loose, smeary, easy-to-pivot performance. Atomic's Powder Series includes four models of wide and super-wide, deep-snow specialists that split into two distinct flavors. On one side are the "directional" designs, Automatic and Access, which are designed with traditional sidecut waisting, mounting points and edgy rebound for aggressive attack. On the other side are the more playful "bi-directional" designs, Bent Chetler and Blog, which are optimized for switch riding and slopestyle tricks, thanks to more pronounced, symmetrical rocker in the tip and tail and forward-waisted sidecuts and mounting points. All models are built for loose, surfy performance in deep snow (like that found in abundance near Atomic's U.S. headquarters in Ogden, Utah), with tapered tips, lightweight constructions and turned-up tails. All models are built on wood cores, and all feature Atomic's Step-Down Sidewall construction: higher sidewalls underfoot for solidity and edge grip; lower sidewalls topped by cap construction tip and tail for softer flex and torsional rigidity and more forgiving performance. The higher-end models, Automatic and Bent Chetler, get extra reinforcement fore and aft of the binding, called Sprocket Power Boosters, where it's needed most for stability and power transmission to the edge (metal in the Automatic; lighter, snappier carbon in the Bent Chetler).