The 2019 Full Tilt Descendant 8 sprouted a hike mode switch in the off-season, so this year we tested it in the On-Off Area group, though this walk feature will probably see more use in parking lot apres ski sessions or hiking the pipe than in the skin track. Otherwise unchanged from last year, testers again gave it high marks for its warm and highly customizable liner, a category best entry and exit score and a lightweight feel on the foot. However, they cautioned strong, technical skiers that the cuff's overly forward stance and very soft flex combined to collapse under load.
To enjoy the 102 mm width available here, skiers should be sure to heat mold the Intuition Pro liner. Prior to molding it fits uncharacteristically snug in width behind the forefoot and over the instep—after customization the liner more evenly addresses the foot and its wide last feel is revealed. Testers report that the length fits short, so this may be a model in which to upsize to gain even more wide-load room. Testers say the cuff is low on the leg, set more forward leaning than the norm, and softer flexing than advertised.
Cruisey, schmeary turns made off the heels worked well, testers said. Lateral power may have been there, but testers said it was difficult to access due to the over-flexed leg position that the forward lean and soft flex left them with.
There are many available options for the Descendant 8, which falls under the Full Tilt Evolution style shell. There is a stiffer, #10 tongue available.
“They have incredible edge grip--skis are immediately on edge when asked. Super quick and accurate steering—the foot feedback is positive.” -- Mike Evans
“New walk mode was above average--easy to use.” -- Brian Elling
“The heat fitting process dramatically evened out the liner in terms of diminishing its harsh initial feel. Cuff has A LOT of range and freedom of flex. Promotes a very forward stance making them athletic and nimble—if you enjoy tons of forward lean these are the ticket.” -- Marc Stewart