Rare is the time we sacrifice peak-bagging prowess for pure power on the descent, but luckily with the Backland 95, you don’t have to. Borrowing geometry cues from Atomic’s larger powder skis and core construction secrets from its lighter-weight brethren, the Backland 95 is a big mountain ski put on a substantial diet. Or maybe a mountaineering ski that was put on a fattening diet? We're not certain. What is certain though is the Backland 95 brings substantial influence from both free-ride touring and ski mountaineering to create a ski that is capable of it all. A free-rider's spring ski, a mountaineer's powder ski, maybe your only ski. At any rate, the lightweight Poplar and Caruba core keeps things light and powerful while a full-length sidewall increases durability and edge-hold. The tip is spooned on the sides to make turning a breeze. The Backland 95 is Atomics' contender for the quiver-of-one.
- AT Tip 2.0 is shaped to reduce hooky tips in challenging snow, allowing you to ski the way you want to no matter the conditions.
- HRZN Tech is a lateral tip rocker (think of a spoon) that increases effective surface area in the tip for increased flotation, decreased deflection, and easy turn-initiation.
- Carbon Backbone increases power transfer, dampens vibrations, and keeps the ski light.
- Full sidewall increases edge grip in steep, firm snow while reducing chatter and vibrations at high speed.
- Ultra-Light Woodcore is the Poplar and Caruba backbone in the Backland 95.
Update 2021/22: Atomic has updated the topsheet to keep it fresh.
Update 2023/24: This Backland 95 has been replaced by a redesigned version, which can be found here.
|Lengths (cm)||169, 177, 185|
|Weight (pair)||2510g 
||Tip notch, flat tail|
||Rocker tip 15%, camber 85%|
||AT Tip 2.0, tapered tail|
||HRZN Tech, Carbon Backbone|
||Poplar and Caruba wood core|
|Skimo Co Says|
|Usage||Powder hunting, quiver of one|
|Notes||Tip is spooned laterally to ease turn-initiation|
|Bottom Line||Easy to ski, all-around confidence inspiring|
|Compare to other High-fat Skis|
Questions & Reviews
I currently have Salomon QST 106 174cm with Fritschi Tecton bindings and want something lighter to use on most days when there's not enough fresh powder to justify dragging heavy QSTs up.
One of the main candidates are Backland 95, but I'm not sure whether I should opt for 169 cm or 177 cm. I'm 178 cm, 88 kg naked. Which length would you suggest?
Another candidate is K2 Wayback 92, which are 200g lighter. How do you think they compare?
Planning to use the new skis with Fritschi Xenic bindings.
The Backland 95s are lighter than the Wayback 92s in similar lengths. That ski uses the cheaper/heavier construction found in the 84 as compared to the 88, 98, and 106 which are higher-quality builds. K2's lineup can be confusing and is really hit or miss.
For reference: 5'10" and 148lbs, really love to go hard uphill (originally wanted to get the Backland 85UL but then opted for the 95 as a jack of all trades) but I'm looking for a light ski setup that can be good for all-mountain use from hard and icy snow in the Alps to powder in Norway, and perform decently downhill too.
Thanks in advance.
We have an almost identical set up so I'll give you my recommendations. I'm a fan of the ATK RT Evo bindings and the ATK Crest is its predecessor (the difference being a few grams and brake operation).
Weight is comparable by a few flecks of sugar between ATK models and Marker, so the biggest consideration for you is if you want more features. This includes fully adjustable lateral and vertical releases, a longer bsl track, etc. Erring on the side of features, I'd recommend the Crest.
Do you know if the brake can be removed from the Crest? And how is its skiability compared to the ATK Haute Route and the Marker Alpinist?
They are pretty different skis. The Blaze 94 is heavier and more damp, and will have a very different feel due to the nearly flat/full rocker profile, whereas the Atomic is a more typical touring ski that is lightweight, rockered in the tip, and cambered underfoot. The Blaze will be able to ski more aggressively through variable snow and will be a little bit looser/easier to turn in variable and off-piste conditions. It is a turn-y ski with a tight underfoot turn radius of 17m, but can still ski fast. The Atomic will have more of a traditional ski feel, with some pop out of the turn and a slightly longer effective edge at lower edge angles. The Atomic will be a solid backcountry all arounder coming in at a pretty light weight, whereas the Volkl will likely be more rewarding for an aggressive skier in and out of the resort.
They've been drilled twice and have some delamination (long story but not from skiing) for 50+ days now and are still holding up fine
The 177 length is a little long for my 5' 8" height but provides stability at speed and float in powder. The HRZN tip is not a marketing gimmick either it provides a noticeable difference in powder over other similar-width skis. They also handle well on hard pack paired with mtn pure bindings I can rip through icy moguls no problem. One downside is the stiffness of the ski prevents it from holding an edge deep into a turn while carving and they prefer short radius turns in steeper terrain.
Would these skis (or another similar width/weight ski) at 176cm be too much to be driven by the dynafit tlt7 boots? I've been skiing the backland UL 85's, but it would be nice to have a more all-around one ski quiver. If you think these are too big a ski for the TLT7's, what is the max size ski I could comfortably manage with these boots? Thanks! Oh.. I'm 6'2, 195lbs.
What ski will work for what boot is very personal. You could certainly ski the Backland 95 with the TLT 7. You might not be utilizing as well as you would be in a boot from the Freeride section of our website, but they would still be plenty fun. Something like the Blizzard Zero G 85 would be very well suited to the TLT 7 if you want to go lighter than the backlands.
Backland 95 seem like they are pretty decent at everything, but in which area the blacklight would be better?
Or maybe you have an alternative to suggest? I have the backland 85UL that I really like but I am looking for something a bit beefier to pair with my bigger boots for down-oriented days, deep days and more difficult snow conditions.
No new sizes for next season. For this style of ski, the 169cm should be good for you. Sizing down for the UL85 is right, but for deep days, 169cm is as short as you would want. If you want to discuss more in depth, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’m thinking about Backland 95 or Backland 85 UL
Which one will be more versality?
I know you love them on touring descents, but do you think Backlands &/or Ripsticks are stiff enough to support a full-sized mammal on the inevitable inbounders?
i'm an intermediate skier who loves long and fast uphill days. but i'm not the most technically skillful downhiller (yet) so, while weight savings are extremely important to me for big ascents, I still like a confidence-inspiring platform that performs in a wide range of snow conditions (guess i'm looking for that single quiver magic).
i'm 5'9, 135lbs, and track between Sawtooths Idaho, NE Oregon, and BC Canada. is this the right ski for me? is there another i should be looking at?
The full setup (which I highly recommend) is the atomic backland 95, ATK raider 12 (brakes removed) and the fischer transalp pro.
This skis lightweight and reasonable waist make it a great all around ski for day in day out tours. It provides confident edge hold in firm conditions and the rearward mount point help keep the tips afloat in powder.
I am using the pomoca free pro 2.0 skin and I was able to swap out the tip loops for dynafit tip connectors that fit well in the groves of the atomic backland.
The downhill performance of these skis is good considering their weight, they are fun and easy to ski in most of the conditions I have had them in.
In feet of new cascade concrete I wanted something wider and with more mass. On several spring like days (freeze thaw conditions) they were an absolute blast. I cannot wait to get these bad boys up a volcano.
I was looking to shed some serious weight from my previous setup but still retain a durable, fun on the down touring setup. These skis have delivered on that goal, I would buy them again.
I'm 158lbs and 5'11'' (72kg and 180cm).
I'm thinking of getting the 185 version, what do you think?
thanks, happy skiing
Thanks a lot,
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