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The Preacher Carbonlite proclaims its backcountry credentials from the mountaintops, whether lift- or skin-accessed. But would our reviewer see the Lite? The only way to find out was to TESTify!
Level
Advanced, Expert
Terrain
Big Mountain
Best for
The righteous freerider, those who spread the good news over the whole of the mountain and still get a 'Hallelujah' on the downhill
Price
£796
lengths
169, 179, 189
Bindings?
No
Smoothness
10
Versatility
8
Energy
10
Value
8
Performance
9
Overall Score
9

The dimensions of the Preacher - 155-112-133 - tell you most of what you need to know, and anything else might be preaching to the choir. But the fact Eva Walkner won the 2015 Freeride World Tour on the (non-carbon) Preacher is a pretty compelling sermon.

The fat waist is pure freeride, the exaggerated sidecut adds versatility (on piste, and in variable off piste terrain) and the flex is strong where you need it, and playful where you want it. This is what I found when I skied the traditional construction of the Preacher - how would it translate to Carbonlite?

Apart from the tasteful refining of Whitedot's iconic graphic and the very obvious weight-saving, I wouldn't have known I was on a carbon-based ski. The power and pop remain, and the shaping is genuinely all-mountain if you have the stamina to work the edges on piste.

The weight saving feels way more significant than the numbers would suggest - 425g on a 179cm ski, or around 20%. This doesn't make the Preacher Carbonlite an out and out touring ski (the dimensions are too awkward to control on a tricky technical climb) but it does make it a paradigm of the emerging sub-genre of free-touring; the weight saving is enough to persuade you into ever-more skinning, in the knowledge that it will handle everything on the ride down.

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.