Ski Canada Test 2019 On-Slope Reviews
A DEACON IN THE ICE
Global warming is a bitch. It means variable snow is more likely at your resort. It’s for those days that Völkl made the Deacon. The iconic German brand’s newest carving ski is loaded with technology for skiing freeze-thaw conditions, in other words carving on super-firm snow and ice. It’s loaded with Völkl’s race-ski technology, including a multi-layer wood core, titanium, a three-dimensional glass topsheet and UVO 3D, a vibration-dampening device sitting on top of the ski. The Deacon comes in two widths: the 76mm prefers slightly bigger turns, and the 74mm is more suited to slalom slashes. ($1,150; voelkl.com)
VÖLKL DEACON 74
$1,150 * BEST FOR: Skiing fast on groomed runs.
LENGTHS: 163, 168, 173, 178 * RADIUS: 18@173 * SIDECUT: 125/74/104
The list of ingredients in the Deacon sounds like one of Völkl’s racing skis: a vibration-dampening widget, three-dimensional build, titanium and full sidewall. But the Deacon proved to be more complex. Sure, it could carve across blue ice and it didn’t have a top-end speed—at least not one our testers could find—but it was also smooth and stable, forgiving enough for an advanced skier to handle. It was easygoing when it came to turn shape, happily snapping tight turns, going for a cruise or maching. And the ski didn’t mind playing in the new stuff, either. Some testers found the tip a little tough to engage, and others noticed the sweetspot was small, right under the foot. However, when Ian March was on the Deacon, he was breaking speed limits: “Powerful edge grip on the hardest snow gives you confidence to go hard. I found myself skiing very fast. This is a fun ski for piste rippers who don’t want something as specialized as a full race ski, but love to carve like they are on one.”