Sometimes when you bolt on a part to improve the form of a snowmobile, pickup truck or whatever, you sacrifice function. That wasn’t the case with C&A Pro Trail X skis.
Also called TRX, the white Trail X boards we installed were a great addition to lighten up the looks of our 2009 Polaris Shift 136 last winter. The main reason we installed the skis was to give the all-black sled some character, but they also excelled doing most of the things a snowmobile ski is supposed to do: they took minimal steering effort to turn on groomed trails, they provided accurate steering without darting and positively held their line through corners. We ran them with 6-inch Stud Boy Shaper Bars on the soles.
C&A markets them as an entry-level trail ski. The rear end is curved up for easier use when the snowmobile is driven in reverse, and the TRX skis are tapered toward the tail on each side as a styling element. A set of white Trail X skis retail for $299.95, other colors cost $20 less. Mount kits for all makes are $39.95.
We took the sled to the mountains in Cooke City, Montana, where the tail proved to be the ski’s downfall when riding off-trail. While boondocking there, the tail broke through the surface when turning or sidehilling; flotation of the skis was good on snow that was set up.
While the C&A Pro skis performed great, the set was a bear to install because the rubber bushing between the spindle and ski saddle was too thick, which caused vertical mis-alignment of the bolt holes in the ski and spindle. We used a sharp utility knife cut off one-quarter of an inch from the bushing and the parts lined up.
C&A Pro said this installation problem is isolated to Polaris IQs because the spindles have changed so frequently that it can’t keep its mounting kits in synch with the sled manufacturer’s designs. The company said it has worked out a solution for the 2009-10 season.
— Andy Swanson