Skimo Co

Voile Hyper Drifter Ski

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Design fads come and go all the time, and technologies that were once touted as revolutionary are tossed aside without eulogy to make way for the latest and greatest. Brands often jump on the bandwagon for a short ride, but Voile waved at the bandwagon as it rolled past. Rather than chase fads, they dug deep into their roots to bring us the Hyper Drifter, a ski that is modeled after the original (very popular) Drifter. With roughly a decade of high quality skis being made in the Drifter molds, Voile did the sensible thing and recreated the ski that has been a cult favorite since its inception, only they made the second version lighter and better suited for backcountry travel in every way. The Hyper Drifter has an updated shovel that is roughly 155mm wide that will give you more float than a boat full of foam. Early rise tip and tail rocker with camber underfoot means that you get to float and bounce through the snow while still maintaining edge articulation and control. For the deep days we dream of all year, clip into the Hyper Drifter and start stacking laps-- you won't be able to refuse the call of 'just one more'.

  • Ultralight Paulownia construction along the whole length of the ski keeps things feeling consistent and springy, perfect for champagne powder all day long.
  • The super wide shovel and early rise tip combine to keep you on top of the snow both on the ups and the down, regardless of how light or deep the snow is.
  • The Hyper Drifter takes many of its design cues from the SuperCharger and V8, with a couple pounds shaved off to make for a more hiker-friendly weight.

Update 2023/24: Different topsheet with the same excellent construction.

Lengths (cm) 171, 178, 186
convert to ounces
1460g [171]
1560g [178]
1700g [186]
Weight (pair) 2920g [171]
3120g [178]
3400g [186]
Sidecut   152-118-135 [171]
155-121-138 [178]
158-124-141 [186]
Turn Radius   18.3m [171]
19.1m [178]
20.0m [186]
Skin Fix   Rounded tip and tail
Specs Verified Yes
Profile   Big tip, early-rise, camber
Shape   Rounded tip & tail w/ medium radius
Construction   Cap
Core   Paulownia wood
Skimo Co Says
Usage Powder, sweet powder
Notes Floats like a hot air balloon
Bottom Line Ultimate powder play thing
Compare to other Excess-fat Skis

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Questions & Reviews

Question from Brian Hutchings
Hi, I am shopping for my first dedicated backcountry powder ski. I have focused on either the Armada Locator 112 or the Voile Hyper Drifter. My previous touring skis are the Blizzard Zero G 95 and 105, which I'm very happy with. For in bounds skiing, I use the Blizzard Bonafide. So it's safe to say that I like a damp, solid ski. I've read that the Locator has a similar feel, but it doesn't seem terribly wider than my Zero G 105. The Hyper Drifter, on the other hand, is a big step up in waist size and seems like it would add more range to my quiver. However, I've heard that Voile skis can feel light and "noodle like" compared to other skis. Finally, when I use these skis I'll obviously be searching for and expecting powder, but in my area getting to it may involve sections of wind crust or sun baked snow. Would you recommend one ski over the other?
Answer from Carlos M
Hi Brian,

For your use I would definitely recommend the Locator 112 over the Hyperdrifter. The Hyperdrifter isn't a noodle, but it is very, very wide and very light. This means it is not the ski you want to have under you on variable snow. It is a dedicated powder tool for maximum floatation. The Locator 112 will provide great powder performance while being more versatile, damp, and powerful in variable snow types, and it will float better than the Zero G 105. Enough so that I would say it justifies a spot in the quiver!
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Question from Mark M
Any idea on why binding inserts aren’t recommended? (As per Voilé website…). I thought Quiver killers spread out the force over a larger diameter so were less strain on ski cores.
Answer from Will McD
Hi Mark, having talked with the folks at Voile about this in the past, their recommendations about quiver killers (and tele mounting) are more out of an abundance of caution. I would not say that you are more likely to rip out of a Voile than any other ski of similar construction when using inserts. As for QK/BF's claims about improved binding retention, there isn't much data out there backing up those claims and most of the studies I have read tend to conclude that while they might improve retention, it's a small enough difference that one can't definitively say that they are stronger, though they certainly won't hurt your retention. I wouldn't expect any issues using properly installed inserts with these skis, just remember that if something does go wrong you are out-of-luck as far as the warranty goes.
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Bill T (used product regularly)
I bought a pair of 171 hyperDrifters in mid-Jan 2023 right when the Wasatch was having a lifetime powder year. Mounted with latest Dynafit Speed Radicals with La Sportiva Spectre light weight 4 buckle boots. I'm 6'1" 175 lbs but am a real old-school turn milker who skis in the bushes a lot, so I prefer the shorter length to make zillions of turns.
I've skied these boards almost exclusively of my other skis since getting them and can't say enough about how fun they are. Even after 45 years of bc skiing they have upped my game and confidence in bigger terrain. The width makes trail breaking so much easier, and they are so light for the size! They handle wind or wet funk-a-delic snow magically compared to what I was used to. Wow.
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Question from Peter Morgan
How does this ski compare to the G3 Slayr 114?
Answer from Jeff
Hi Peter, Can't find anyone here who has skied that G3 big ski to make that comparison.
If you are looking for the fattest floater, the Hyper Drifter has wider dimensions overall, especially the tip, and is still lighter. Also, It's a Voile, made in Salt Lake City along with DPS skis, both brands make the best powder skis in our book.
I can see you already ordered the 164cm. For ladies who want a wide Pow ski, these two brands have you covered, the shortest Slayr 114 is a 178cm.
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Question from Andy
I was wondering how this ski compares to the old drifters? Has anyone skied both?
Answer from Tristan M
Hi Andy,

The primary difference between the Drifter and the Hyper Drifter will be core construction. The Hyper Drifter has a lightweight Paulownia and Carbon-Weave wood core that has plenty of energy and pop. However, it will probably not be quite as damp as the heavier core materials in Drifter. If you have further questions on ski construction, feel free to reach out to!
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Question from Ben S
Anyone have a binding suggestion? Looking at the tecton or the helio 350. I’m about 190 lbs and have the 186 drifter
Answer from Brett S
Thanks for your question, Ben! We definitely have a few suggestions! If you're looking for a light binding, the Hagan Core 12 Pro would be a better choice than the Helio 350. It has a burlier toe than the Helio 350, is $50 less, and is made by the same company (ATK). If you want something a little burlier, the Dynafit ST Rotation is fully DIN certified and backed by a ten year warranty. Overall, with how light the Hyper Drifter is, the Hagan Core 12 Pro would be a great choice!
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Question from Nick
Any thoughts about the hyper drifter vs the hyper v8? Seems like the v8, has a little less running length and would maybe be a bit more playful for the width? Also curious if they have a similar flex profiles.

Answer from TSB
Hey Nick, you pretty much nailed it with those two points! The Drifter is absurdly stable and just loves to plow through whatever you point it at, whether that's an untracked meadow of 5% blower or a chopped-up south-facing bowl that is rapidly starting to resemble a mogul field. The V8, with that added rocker at the tip and tail -- and a lot more tip/tail taper as well -- has that more "flickable" feel and really doesn't stop the skier from making nimble, short-radius turns. I wouldn't say the stiffness/flex is wildly different, but the V8 is a little more forgiving, especially in the back seat, and doesn't have any issues pairing with a lighter, two-buckle boot, while the Drifter rewards more powerful skiing and a stiffer/taller boot.
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CalvinE (used product a few times)
When I first saw these skis, my first thought was, they are ridiculously huge for the backcountry, but I wanted to try them for deep powder days on resort. So I put full-featured touring bindings on them with brakes, since I use touring boots on the resorts. I also got them in one size shorter than usual for skiing trees and chutes.

But the resorts were all closed for Covid-19 by the time I got the Drifters and bindings installed, so I've been using them in the backcountry. What I discovered, is these babies are awesome in crappy spring snow! They keep you on top of the breakable crust better, and when you do go through, you don't go very deep under the crust. They also give you a nicer ride through spring sun cups. And surprisingly, the added weight is not much over my standard go-to ski, the Voile V6, so uphill travel is not bad as long you don't have to fit in an existing skin track. One other unexpected advantage, is all that surface area means you can skin up incredibly steep slopes. I'm also able to make very tight turns, inspite of the longer turn radius of the side cut, by using foot rotation - "short-swing" style works well with these. Maybe also because I got them in a shorter length. Overall very pleased!
Reply from Ben S
Any suggestions on binding? I wanted to go with a helio 350 but wasn’t sure it would drive that ski. I’m about 190 lbs on the 186 ski.
Reply from Calvin E
I use the Hagan Core, which has a wider, more stable bolt pattern than the usual Dynafit pattern. Depending on how aggressively you ski though, I think most touring bindings will drive the Drifters. Soft conditions, moderate speeds.
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Question from Todd M Samson
I weigh 190 lbs, could I get away with the 171 cm ski? Or, should I stay with the recommended 178cm?
Answer from TSB
G'day Todd M. -- either 171 or 178cm would likely work well for you as a powder-slaying plank. We are seeing more folks going longer with this ski compared to what they use with Voile's other offerings, to create an easier trail-breaking experience and gain more float on the down. That said, the Drifter is so flipping wide you'll have plenty of both even in a shorter length!
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Model: Hyper Drifter

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