Having been given a new lighter core for the 2017-18 winter season, the Atomic Backland FR 102 looks like an even more interesting prospect than their predecessor, the Automatic 102 - always a firm favourite with the Snow Magazine test team.
Happily, the lower weight version launched for this winter only adds to the overall experience and takes nothing away in terms of ski-ability. High scores for float, stability and playfulness reflects the possibilities to have fun in the deep stuff and their versatile nature makes them an acceptable prospect for the piste too - although there's better options in this category for carving on groomed slopes.
Where they really excel is in the powder as we would expect for a ski with a 102mm waist. The ease of turn in deep snow conditions makes them ideal for someone who is looking to get into freeride skiing for the first time, they really are forgiving and confidence boosting, even in trickier terrain.
At a list price of £375 (bindings not included) they present one of the best freeride skis out there on the market - any debutant seasonaire who relishes the prospect of a season full of powder snow (you never know) should well consider them and if you're a seasoned pro looking for a fun, easy ride then you won't go too far wrong with this solid, all-round freeride ski.