Ski: 2017-2018 Volkl BMT 122, 186 cm
Available Lengths: 176 & 186 cm
Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 186.5 cm
Stated Weight per Ski (176 cm): 1840 g
Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski (186 cm): 1922 and 1958 grams
Stated Dimensions: 143-122-133 mm
Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 143-122-133 mm
Stated Sidecut Radius: 28.2 meters
Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 65 and 29 mm
Traditional Camber Underfoot: 0 (full rocker)
Core: “Multi Layer Woodcore”
Base: P-Tex 4500
Factory Recommended Mount Point: -10.0 cm from center; 83.0 cm from tail
Blister’s Recommended Mount Point: 83.0 cm from tail
Bindings: Marker Kingpin Demo 10
Boots: Tecnica Zero G Pro Guide, Salomon MTN Lab, Dynafit TLT 7, Salomon X-Alp Lab
Days Skied: 20
Test Locations: Alyeska Resort & Turnagain Pass, AK; Sun Valley, Idaho[Note: Our review was conducted on the 16/17 Volkl BMT 122, which comes back unchanged for 17/18, except for the graphics.]
After spending time on the very good Volkl BMT 109, I was excited to check out the BMT 122, which features a waist width that’s more typical of mid-winter touring skis for me in Alaska. We covered the BMT 122 in the 16/17 Winter Buyer’s Guide, but this is our long-term update.
Volkl says about the BMT 122, “With a full carbon fiber construction and lightweight multi- layer wood core, the BMT 122 features a full rocker design and early-taper sidecut, for the ultimate powder performance after a self-powered ascent. Also available are pre-cut, glue-free Vacuum technology climbing skins. New for 16/17, the BMT features the added advantage of the ICE.OFF topsheet, designed to keep snow and ice from adhering to the topsheet to keep the lightest possible setup.”
After almost a full year of using the BMT 122 as a dedicated touring ski in Alaska and while traveling, I have come away quite impressed.
This is the third ski that we’ve reviewed with Volkl’s V-Werks Carbon construction, and we have discussed the construction at length. The skis have an unusual look due to the “3D.Ridge Carbon Construction,” but the other skis with this construction that we’ve reviewed (the BMT 109 and the V-Werks Katana) have provided a smoother ride than expected despite the relatively light weight.
Despite how thin the skis are at the edges, we have not experienced any durability issues with these skis, but we still wouldn’t recommend them as a daily inbounds driver in an area with a lot of exposed rocks.
Like the BMT 109, the Volkl BMT 122 has a very uniform flex, and I would describe the ski’s flex as an “8” throughout. They are among the stiffest powder touring skis I’ve used recently, being significantly stiffer than the Moment Exit World, Salomon QST 118, or Salomon MTN Lab. The flex reminds me of some of the DPS Pure Carbon skis I’ve used over the years.
I started with the Marker Kingpin 10 demo binding on Volkl’s recommended line of -10 cm, I and never felt the need to adjust them fore or aft. The ski felt well balanced at this mount point regardless of the snow conditions.
Like the other V-Werks skis we’ve reviewed, the BMT 122 comes with a topsheet graphic stating that it is to be mounted “only with Marker bindings.” This is due to an “H-shaped” reinforced mounting plate specifically designed to work with the Marker hole pattern. While you can find reports of people mounting with other bindings, talk to your local ski shop first if you’re considering trying to mount other bindings.
To me, this is one of the greatest limitations of the BMT line. While the Kingpin is a great AT binding, many skiers may find them to be more binding than they need, and might wish for a lighter setup. While it may be possible with a clever ski tech, I wish they had a more universal mounting plate for bindings of all types.
Touring — “Ice-Off topsheets & skins”
The BMT 122 is light and well balanced on the skin track. The mount point allows for very easy kick turns, even in steep, firm snow.
Volkl touts their “Ice-Off” topsheet as a solution to snow accumulation (and the added weight accumulation) on the way up. Somewhat paradoxically, I’ve noticed several times on cold, sunny days that the black graphics on these skis collect and hold significantly more snow than the white parts, so I can’t say that I’ve noticed any difference in overall icing from other skis I’ve used, or from my friend’s skis and splitboards.
NEXT: Powder, Chop, Crud, Etc.