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Launched last winter but well received, the Backland 85 is a touring ski with a performance element - we review them following our 2016 on snow ski test in Austria.
Level
Advanced, Expert
Terrain
All Mountain
Best for
Fast, lightweight ski touring with all mountain capabilities
Price
£330
Season
2016/17
lengths
164,170,176,182
Bindings?
No
Versatility
10
Up-hill
9
Value
9
Downhill
8
Performance
8
Overall Score
9

The Backland 85 from Atomic would make a good compromise for someone looking to mix some longer and shorter ski tours together, whilst keeping a high performance element in a wide variety of conditions.

Responsive and lively, they handle groomed slopes well considering they are designed mostly for off-piste. The 85mm waist means they still keep enough floatation and stability in powder but are quick edge to edge and are quite happy in most conditions, with the possible exception of big mountain faces.

They are the kind of ski you could take across the Haute Route one week and then just play on the front side of the mountain the next. That versatility made them a popular choice with our team.

The lightweight Poplar and Caruba wood core helps when travelling up too - at under 1200 grams they are not the lightest touring skis out there, but considering the performance element, the balance feels spot on.

The carbon 'backbone' perhaps helps provide that balance, but at £330, it's one of the best value skis out there right now.

All our reviews are independent and unbiased. We may earn a commission when you buy from links to Amazon and other affiliates on this page.