Voile Artisan Review

Mike Hardaker testing the Voile Artisan Splitboard Review in Nelson, BC Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

The Voile Artisan Splitboard is one of the best splitboards we have tested this season, especially considering the $595 price tag. With the Artisan Splitboard, Voile created a freestyle friendly splitboard that excels in all conditions. Find out more about how this split rides in my review below :

Voile Artisan Splitboard Review

We tested the Voile Artisan in a size 162 which is about 4 centimeters larger then our every day boards. The rocker-camber profile floated great in deep pow, with the nose of the board always staying above the snows surface. The Artisan floated in light snow found in the Jackson Hole backcountry and really excelled while testing in British Columbia with deeper snow and a higher moisture content in the snowpack.

Voile Splitboard in Nelson, BC

Product testing at Whitewater Ski Area in Nelson, BC Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

Splitboard Stability

The Artisan has a softer feel then other splitboards on the market allowing the board to be very responsive. We felt comfortable getting the board up to speed riding over chop, chunder and especially opening it up on untracked steep pow lines. The board responded well maneuvering quickly from edge to edge in the trees and while making big arching wide open alpine turns. Having camber between the feet worked well for holding an edge on harder snow.

Mike Hardaker riding the Voile Artisan in the backcountry Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

Mike Hardaker riding the Voile Artisan in the backcountry Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

How Playful is the Voile Artisan?

This is how a splitboard is supposed to ride! The Artisan had so much pop and freestyle radness that at times we forgot we were riding a splitboard. Voile uses a full aspen wood core in the Artisan that creates plenty of snap and a lively feel. The board really stood out from the pack when riding pillow lines and always seemed to gravitate towards the next feature to pop an air off of.

“The hybrid camber/rocker profile is forgiving but very responsive allowing for every kind of riding style” said Neil Provo – Voile Athlete and backcountry ninja.

Voile Artisan Splitboard Review Video

Durability
We have been testing the 2013-2014 Voile Artisan Splitboard for the past 3 months in a variety of conditions from early season boney snow to chest deep powder. The board has gone over rocks, skinned up icy slopes, bonked and jibbed off every tree and pillow we could find and shows very little signs of wear and tear aside from a few tiny scratches on the base that can easily be removed with a trip to the local board shop. The sidewalls are made with ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMW) p-tex that’s built to last. With over 20 days touring we have yet to even wax the board thanks to the Sintered base which has great wax absorption characteristics right out of the factory.

The Voile Artisan will seek out fresh snow Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

The Voile Artisan will seek out fresh snow Photo Laura Patten | Mountain Weekly News

Overall Impression

Voile has over 20 years experience in the splitboard market with years of research and development under their belts. The boards are all hand made in Salt Lake City, Utah by a company with a strong grasp on creating the best products for backcountry users including climbing skins, splitboard hardware, avalanche safety gear and one of the best splitboards available on the market.

If you’re the type of rider that wants to get some air, slash surf turns and ride with confidence in your gear be sure to check out my favorite splitboards of the year – the Voile Artisan.

The Voile Artisan is no longer being made.  Instead Voile has replaced it with the Revelator.  Learn more about how the boards compare in our Voile Revelator Splitboard Review.

2013 Artisan Splitboard Review (Below)

A directional twin board, the Voile Artisan Spiltboard comes fresh with an innovative rocker/camber profile. Its unique design actually incorporates the rocker into the board’s overall shape and slips the camber underneath the bindings. This dynamic makes the Artisan one of the most nimble and agile splitboards I have ever ridden.

The Voile Artisan Splitboard has been my go-to board for backcountry riding this past season. Though it’s a bit pricey at $850 off the shelf, you can definitely rest assured that you’re getting a top-notch product. There is no doubt in my mind that I’ll be riding this snowboard for years to come.

The agility of the Voile Artisan easily translates into superior handling in just about any condition or setting that you can think of. It performs particularly well in untouched powder (which we thankfully happen to have a fair amount of up here at Mount Baker). Furthermore, it turns and carves, leaps and jumps at the slightest touch; mazes of trees, rock drop offs, and everything else that the backcountry can throw at you is easily soaked up by this board.

The camber/rocker profile and board construction itself give the Artisan some serious pop. I haven’t ridden too many splitboards that have such a light, floaty, and, for a lack of better words, poppy feel. And that’s exactly why I love this board so much. Many of the splitboards produced today seem to give up something basic in an effort to be hauled into the backcountry more easily. Not the Voile Artisan. Yes, it’s easy to haul around on a hike up a hill, but when it’s put back together, it works its charms all the way back down the mountain. Perfect.

The board’s full aspen wood core, interior and exterior sintered UHMW sidewalls, and sintered base are other superior features of the Artisan splitboard. They keep the board light, strong, and fast. Best of all, they make the board ultra-durable. I’ve barely had to do any maintenance on this board this season.

If you’re the kind of snowboarder who would rather hit the ‘dark side’ of the mountain than the busier runs at the resort, then you’re going to need a splitboard. And the Voile Artisan is one of the best splitboards around. In addition to being a truly killer ride, it comes stocked with all the hardware that you’ll need including touring brackets, durable slider tracks, dual-height climbing wires, and binding shims. You’ll be in for a ride like none other when you pick up this board.

Voile Artisan Splitboard
5 / 5 RATING      

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About the Author

Mike Hardaker
Mike Hardaker grew up surfing and snowboarding in Orange County and followed his love of surfing to Hawaii before eventually moving to the mountains to concentrate on snowboarding. When not on a board, Mike worked for Snowboarder and later oversaw TGR's online publication. He went on to found Mountain Weekly News where he is still CEO and Editor in Chief. Mike spends most of his time splitboarding in the winter months and backpacking throughout the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem in the summer.