2020 Atomic Cloud 12

The Cloud 12 from Atomic takes race-level technology and repackages it into a ski that’s designed for ripping turns at your local resort. Atomic starts with a Light Woodcore, but then powers it up with Titanium, their Servotec system, Full Sidewalls, and finishes it with a World Cup Base. That’s a recipe for a high-performance frontside ski that’s a touch lighter than their dedicated race skis. With lengths ranging from 147 all the way up to 168 cm and turn radii from 14.1 to 15.8 m, the Cloud 12 should be a responsive, energetic, and precise carver.

“Hot damn! These are awesome!” was how Nifer Hoehn started her feedback after testing the 161 cm Cloud 12. Nifer gave the Cloud 12 some high scores, including 5’s out of 5 for stability, quickness/maneuverability, playfulness, torsional stiffness/edge grip, and overall impression. The only score dropping below 4 out of 5 was for flotation, which isn’t a concern on a ski that’s 70 mm underfoot. “Loved the playfulness. Easy to turn, initiate, and great hold. Loved the power coming out of the turn. So easy to ski, and so fun. Don’t love the graphic, but otherwise a 10.” Some of our other testers noted that they really did love the graphic, and if that’s the only downside in Nifer’s eyes, we think that’s pretty darn good.

Katrine Wolfgang also tested the 161 cm length and her scores mirrored Nifer’s exactly with full 5 out of 5 marks for the same criteria and nothing dropping below 4. “Wow! This ski wants to go fast and turn on a dime. It’s not a ski to ski with a hangover.” Good advice from Katrine, and we can also extrapolate that it might not be the right choice for a timid intermediate; you need to be on it.

Darcy Mangan was one of those testers who noted the graphic, commenting that it’s a “beautiful ski that likes to rip.” Darcy also was on the 161 cm length and one of her first notes was that it’s best “for confident skiers.” She found it has “quick turn initiation” and felt “smooth and stable.”

Susan Dorn, another tester coming off the 161 cm length, again gave the same exact scores as Katrine and Nifer. Full marks for stability, quickness/maneuverability, playfulness, torsional stiffness/edge grip, and overall impression. She described it as “quick edge to edge, stable at high speeds,” and she thought the “turn radius feels smaller (a good thing).” We expect Susan is comparing it to other high-end frontside skis. The smaller radius of the Cloud 12 gives it a fun, responsive feel. “Good for advanced and expert skiers who want performance and fun!”

Kristi Brown, who, like the rest of our testers, skied the 161 cm length, was thoroughly impressed by the Cloud 12. She opted not to give it a score for flotation, but every other criterion received a score above 4. Some 4.5s, and plenty of 5s. “The Cloud 12 made me feel like a Bond Girl. Sweet, sexy, slick. The Cloud 12 is a stealth performer.” It does have a very polished, slick look to it, and definitely has the performance to match. Kristi liked it so much, she referred to it as a “reason to get out of bed in the morning,” and even added, “yes, it’s that good!”

Women that are looking for responsiveness, energy, and edge hold in a fun, frontside carving ski are going to fall in love with the Cloud 12. Not overly demanding, but still hits that high tier of performance that advanced and expert skiers are looking for. It’s not going to beat you up, but it’s also not going to leave many skiers wishing for more. When we have so many testers on one ski who are all singing its praise, we know it’s a great ski.

Testers

Kristi Brown

Age: 49Height: 5'9"Weight: 133 lbs.

Ski Style: Energetic, precise, very smooth and skis with a lot of finesse

Susan Dorn

Age: 61Height: 5'2"Weight: 130 lbs.

Ski Style: Deliberate, smooth, Masters ski racer

Darcy Mangan

Age: 43Height: 5'6"Weight: 175 lbs.

Ski Style: Smooth and happy, just like it should be

Katrine Wolfgang

Age: 49+Height: 5'5"Weight: 160 lbs.

Ski Style: Smooth carving

Nifer Hoehn

Age: 40Height: 5'6"Weight: 130 lbs.

Ski Style: Fast and precise carving

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