RMK…Best Sled Ever


Trevor Guernsey, Pro Sled Breaker

        The Polaris Rocky Mountain King (RMK)  is one of the most iconic and capable deep snow shredders. It is also known to many as the best technical tree riding machine ever made. 

      In the first year of the legendary RMK, Polaris provided a plethora of options. From 1996 to 1998, the RMK was offered in the wedge chassis. The 1996 model was offered with triple motors; however, it was phased out by 1998 in favor of the lighter 600 and 700s. For that generation, it was optioned with a 136x15x1.75 track.

     In 1999 to 2001, Polaris manufactured the RMK in the Gen 2 chassis and could be optioned with the 600, 700 and 800 motors–including the following track options: 136x15x1.75 or 144x15x2.

     The years between 2002 and 2005 saw a huge upgrade in chassis switching to the edge platform; it was far superior due to its improved ergonomics and suspensions. Also, this generation offered 144x15x2, 151x15x2 and the 159x15x2 tracks. 

     The next generation, 2006-2011, offered a 600, 700, 800 and 900 in the Dragon chassis. This generation being the first chassis to offer a 900 motor, but was soon dropped as it was plagued by reliability issues. However, the Dragon was quite an upgrade due to the use of rider-forward ergonomics. Polaris improved suspension, as well as geometry, especially in the front end. Also new was the offering of a 155x15x2.4 inch lug or 163x15x2.4, as well as the old 144x15x2.

      The 2011-2015 RMK was a killer chassis offered with a 600 or 800 motor. Track options were 144, 155 or 163. The biggest upgrade was in the chassis, creating improved sidehilling capabilities, as well as being significantly lighter, by 50 pounds.

     The 2016-2021 version is the best RMK chassis ever made, due to its better ergonomics, upgraded geometry, total redesign for less weight, easier sidehilling and carving capabilities, more durable and better cooling. It was called the PRO RMK. It also was the first chassis to offer the long-awaited 850; however, it still retains the 600 and 800 motor. Track options included a 144, 155, 163 inch, and this was the first Polaris chassis to offer the 174 track. Also, with the 2020-2021 model years, Polaris came out with a new model of RMK called the Khaos, which incorporated a more playful suspension setup making the front end feel much lighter–opposed to the Pro that has a much more precise handling characteristics.

     Opinions, I really like the RMK; however, I don’t think it is the best sled for everybody. I think this because of the four brands of sleds I would prefer the Arctic Cat if I was someone whose favorite thing to do was hit jumps and do 80mph down the trail. If I wanted a sled that had 200 plus horsepower, I would buy a turbo Yamaha, or if I wanted a machine with high tech suspension, and if I liked Ski Doo, I would buy a Summit. 

The moral of the story is, in my opinion, all the new mountain sleds are so capable you can’t go wrong; therefore, if I were to buy a brand new one, I would buy a Pro RMK or a M8000 or a Turbo Yamaha Sidewinder.

Photo Credits