Expert Review: 2023 Atomic Bent Chetler 100 [with Video]
Ski Experts Daryl Morrison and Hayden Wright tested the 2023 Atomic Bent Chetler 100 skis on carving, freestyle, and freeride at Powder Mountain in Utah.
Curated Ski Experts Daryl Morrison and Hayden Wright tested the 2023 Atomic Bent Chetler 100 at Powder Mountain in Utah this spring. See what they thought of the ski in the carving, freestyle, and freeride categories, and chat with a Curated Ski Expert with questions or to get personalized gear recommendations.
Before we get started, it's worth noting that Curated Experts are not sponsored by any brands. All of these reviews are completely unbiased.
What does the brand claim about this ski? [Daryl] Atomic claims that these are going to be a really fun ski to ski all over the mountain. They’re something that you can take in the park, something that you could hop off side hits with, and something that's just really versatile and fun all over the place.
[Hayden] Atomic states that the Bent Chetler 100 is the one ski, do-it-all, free-ride, freestyle ski. It's a slimmed down version of the original Bent Chetler 120 that we've all known and loved over the years. Whether you're a park skier or you ski the whole mountain, the Bent Chetler 100 is gonna be the ski for you.
What was your overall impression of the ski? [Daryl] My first impressions were exactly what I thought this ski would feel like. They're definitely very soft. This is not a ski that I would size down for myself. I skied this in the 180cm length, and I felt like at speed there was a lot of chatter in the tip and tail. That didn’t surprise me with these skis. These are not necessarily something I would want to ski really fast.
I skied them back mounted rather than a center mount or something closer to the center of the ski. I think these would have skied better if I had had them mounted more forward closer to the center of the ski. I felt like I didn't have enough tail with this mount position.
Unfortunately we didn’t have access to a park today, but I would love to ski these in the park. I think they would be really fun in there, and I actually know a lot of people who ski them in the park.
[Hayden] My first impressions of the Chetler 100 were awesome. I got to review last year's model, and I like this one a little bit better. They have a lightweight wood core, and the ski doesn't feel as stiff as the previous model of the Bent Chetler 100. I had a blast skiing them.
It's got 20% rocker in the tip, 70% camber throughout the ski underfoot and then 10% in the tail. It's not a full twin rocker ski, and the rocker in the front isn't too much. I think that's why I didn't experience any chattering with these. Overall, my first impression was that it’s a super fun ski, at 100mm under foot. It was quick edge to edge, and the lightweight wood core really reduces the swing weight on these. It was an absolute blast riding around here at Powder Mountain on these.
How well does the ski carve? [Daryl] These are not something that I would pick as a carving ski. I think there are better options out there in the 100 millimeter waist width range that holds an edge much better than these do.
For smearing turns, these are really fun. They're extremely light and maneuverable, so if you want to just make short radius turns and be wiggling around the mountain, these are a great option. They’re Definitely not carving skis.
[Hayden] These carved great. They’re easy to hold the edge with, easy edge to edge, only a 100mm underfoot. They’re a super fun carving ski from Atomic.
Does the ski feel stable? [Daryl] At speed, these were not my favorite. They felt a little unstable to me, and I think that's due to the ski being a little bit softer and not having as much tail as I'm used to on the ski. They dump speed effectively, but I was a little concerned about mouse trapping with these. I'd throw them sideways a little bit, and my ski would start bouncing on the snow. I was afraid I’d catch my front edge and get slammed.
[Hayden] We got these skis up to speed, and I didn't experience too much chatter. With the low swing weight it’s easy to throw the brakes on, and it’s a fun ski at high and low speeds.
Can you speak to the ski’s playfulness and pop? [Daryl] if you like a ski that is soft and poppy, this a good option for you. They are kind of damp underfoot. When I engage the ski in a turn, I feel a little bit of catch in the rocker profile in the front. They definitely rocket you out of your turns. So if you like that feeling, this is a good option for you. But, it's not that same feeling that you get with a true carving ski where you pop out of a turn and the ski naturally rolls over into the next turn.
How does the ski feel skiing switch? [Daryl] I didn’t ski these switch, but they can definitely go backwards. People ski these as a park ski. They're adequate.
How does the ski perform in chop and crud? [Daryl] This is a ski that will definitely get pushed around by chunder and ice in adverse conditions. If you're a really balanced skier, and you're fine with your skis being all over the place, this is a good option for you. Some people really do like that. It's just not what I would personally go for.
[Hayden] They actually held up great. Typically lighter skis tend to kind of get beat up in that crud and stuff. These are by no means crud busters, but they were super fun on and off the groomers today here at Powder Mountain.
How do you think the ski would feel in powder? [Daryl] We have not gotten to ski powder this week. There’s only about a quarter inch of new snow, so I don't want to speak too much to powder performance. But, given that this particular ski has two wider waist widths for 2023, specifically the Bent Chetler 110s and the 120s, I wouldn't even consider taking this as a powder ski. If you like the way that this lineup skis, you can just go with a wider waist width.
Are they maneuverable in the trees? [Daryl] These are maneuverable and soft. I wouldn't recommend taking them in chopped up trees. If you have smooth tree runs that don't have a ton of chopped up snow, they'll be totally fine. They're not going to be amazing at it, but they're going to be maneuverable and something that is quick for you to throw around in the trees.
[Hayden] With its lightweight wood core, the Atomic Bent Chetler 100s were super easy to turn, nimble, and agile. We actually did take them into the trees for a few runs, and they weren't too bad in the bumps either. Overall it’s a really maneuverable ski that’s easy to turn and fun.
Do the skis feel stable on landings? [Daryl] I hopped around on these a little bit and they're stable. They land fine. I would definitely center mount these for myself or ski them with a slightly forward mount so that I had more tail. I think having less tail was a shortcoming of skiing, these back-mounted for me, specifically.
[Hayden] With the new side wall on the Atomic Chetler series, it's beefier and feels a little bit more meaty underfoot and that definitely is going to help with landings. I would feel totally comfortable hitting the big jumps in the park with these. Even though it's only a hundred millimeters underfoot, this is definitely going to be a real stable, fun ski for any kind of free-ride and freestyle activities.
Is there a location where you’d pack these skis on a trip? [Hayden] I would bring the Bent Chetler 100 if I was coming to either Utah or Colorado, and I was going to be skiing some park and some out of bounds through the backcountry gates. This would be the one ski that I would put in my bag just because it's awesome. You're going to see this ski in the park. You're going to see it outside of the park next year. If you're not a full park rider or a full big mountain rider, but you do a little bit of everything, then the Bent Chetler 100 is a ski to consider.
Who would you recommend this ski to? [Daryl] I would recommend these skis to someone who knows that they want something that's nice and light underfoot. The skis themselves are very light. They are not a heavy ski. I’d also recommend them to someone who wants something that's soft and playful, maybe that they're going to use as a park ski. If you want an all-mountain ski that's going to be very easy to push around and something that's going to force you to be really balanced, then this is a good option for you.
Remember that every ski is not right for every person, and every skier is unique. Chat with a Ski Expert here on Curated to learn more about the Bent Chetler 100. We can help talk through whether it’s the right ski for you and make other personalized recommendations to consider.