The smartest, fastest sleds for zooming down slopes

The fast and the flurry-est.

sleds
Fastest sleds, ranked.Jonathon Kambouris

You don’t need to hurl yourself off a cliff or out of a plane to get a taste of adrenaline. This winter, find a hill, put on your puffiest pair of ­fanny-​­protecting snow pants, and grab a slippery rig for a dose of pure, ­gravity-​­powered fun. Ranked here from fastest to slowest, these light and aerodynamic sleds will carry you down slopes and around slick corners, and possibly even propel you into fantastic yard-​sale-​style wipeouts. Ask your pals to record your ice capades in slow motion to relive later, hot cocoa in hand.

  1. The Yukon Hammerhead Pro HD flies across the snow thanks to its 4.5-inch-wide rear skis: They create less friction than a flat-­bottom ride, and won't dig into terrain like ­classic skinny rails will.

  2. Flop onto the ­Flexible Flyer Runner, then tear down hard-packed snow. Sleds of this type are usually around 42 inches long, but the Flexi's 60-inch body supports your legs so they won't drag and slow you.

  3. Instead of lying down, riders kneel on the 16-inch Mad River Rocket Killer B's foam pads and secure a strap over their legs. This tight connection enables advanced maneuvers such as jumping and carving.

Related: How to speed up your sled

  1. With no bindings and a short 37-inch length, Burton's Throwback Snowboard is built for hills, not resorts. The deck has a wood core and a laminated bottom like a real snowboard, so it'll float over powder.

  2. Attach a pair of slick shin-guard-style Sled Legs directly to your tibias with the inch-wide nylon straps. Then, from the top of the slope, run and slide like a rock star, trusting the foam inside to cushion the landing.

  1. Plop your rear onto the seat of the Zipfy, grab the handle, and stick your feet straight in front of you. To slow down, pull back on the handle, pushing the bottom of the sled into the snow; lean forward to zoom even faster.

This article was originally published in the Winter 2018 Danger issue of Popular Science.