This study illustrates the high potential of RALI, the French airborne radar–lidar instrument, for studying cloud processes and evaluating satellite products when satellite overpasses are available. For an Arctic nimbostratus ice cloud collected on 1 April 2008 during the Polar Study using Aircraft, Remote Sensing, Surface Measurements and Models, of Climate, Chemistry, Aerosols, and Transport (POLARCAT) campaign, the capability of this synergistic instrument to retrieve cloud properties and to characterize the cloud phase at scales smaller than a kilometer, which is crucial for cloud process analysis, is demonstrated. A variational approach, which combines radar and lidar, is used to retrieve the ice-water content (IWC), extinction, and effective radius. The combination of radar and lidar is shown to provide better retrievals than do stand-alone methods and, in general, the radar overestimates and the lidar underestimates IWC. As the sampled ice cloud was simultaneously observed by CloudSat and Cloud–Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observations (CALIPSO) satellites, a new way to assess satellite cloud products by combining in situ and active remote sensing measurements is identified. It was then possible to compare RALI to three satellite ice cloud products: CloudSat, CALIPSO, and the Cloud-Aerosol-Water-Radiation Interactions (ICARE) center’s radar–lidar project (DARDAR).