Proving Ground Skis

Product: Slydog Powderhound 8” Skis

Price: $425 (Complete kit, skis, loops, runners, mount kit) 

Tested on: 2012 Arctic Cat ProClimb 1100Turbo 

I have not been excited for a new sled for quite a while. Primarily riding Arctic Cat, it has been a long time since we have had some change, and honestly, it has been a long time since it was needed. The new Proclimb chassis has received some tough criticism as well as praise from various riders throughout the country, but for me it is a hit. The 1100Turbo marks the first time that a factory has built a stock mountain machine with an OEM turbo. I was pumped to ride it!!! 

First ride out was in the trees in some softer early season (Mid January for 2012) powder. The first thing I noticed was every time I would chop the throttle that front end would dive violently. At first I attributed it to the weight of the engine, as most strokers will dive a little bit. Maybe it was the engine braking? Whatever was causing it, it really hampered the sleds appeal for me.

Slydog1

Back to the shop and checking over the sled one evening and I started looking at the skis. My first question was, where did Arctic Cat come up with all these left over Firecat Skis? Narrow, shallow keel, etc. Basically a terrible mountain ski. I started looking through the ski options and decided to try the Slydog Powder Pro 8” ski. Wider than the 7”, which I didn't think would have the surface area to hold the 'ol girl up in the powder, but narrower than some of the “real wide” skis that are available. 

Mounting was typicall for aftermarket skis. The Slydogs come pacakged nicely and you have to purchase 3 pieces. The skis, which come with the loops pre-installed, the mount kit, and your choice of runners. They come with their own dampners and mounting hardware (bolts and nuts). You don't re-use any of the stock parts. 

Because of the wide front end, I mounted mine with the spacers in the narrowest allowable position.

The Test 

After unloading and starting up the trail I immediately noticed improved steering. More positive feedback to the rider is a big bonus from these skis. The make a little more noise as they glide across the harder snow than the stock skis. You probably would not hear this on a two-stroke, but on the four-stroke you are so quite cruising that you hear a lot of things like the skis. 

Once I hit the powder I was sold! Floatation, control, and stability are all in another time zone than the stock skis!! Making a descent in deep powder was no longer a life-threatening experience. Throttle chop going up or down hill was no longer accompanied by the skis diving.

Slydog2

One would think with the massively wider skis it would be harder to sidehill. I did not notice this with the big bad boys. I weight about 165 and run 95 lbs of air in the front floats. Sidehilling was great, boondocking was great, it was all good. 

I chose to go with the white skis, and these may not be everybodies cup of tea, but I love the way they look and they really look great on the white LE model. 

Grab a set of these and you will not be disappointed!!

Hits: 

-Better stability 

-Better looking 

-No more powder dive 

-No more darting 

-They work as advertised

Misses: 

-The only miss with skis for me is the fact that they didn't come on the sled when it was new. I know it takes business from the aftermarket....but Come on Cat!!! What were you thinking with the stockers????

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