Big Winds manager Jason Watts can ride any kite he wants. Last summer, he rode 2016 Cabrinha Drifter almost exclusively. Here he explains why, and whether the new Drifter is a kite for you.


Jason’s Scorecard: Power 8, Range 9, Turning Speed 9, Drift 10, Hang Time 8, Relaunch 10, Looping 8, Overall Impression 10

Bar Pressure Rating: light to moderate


What I Liked: Ease of use. Right away, this kite has a great feel in the bar. There’s just enough bar pressure to know what the kite is doing, without being overwhelming. I also like its industry leading drift for wave riding, swell riding and ease.


What I Didn’t Like: This kite requires a bit more effort to go upwind, especially in 11 and 13 meter sizes, and when riding a twin tip. Also, while the Drifter has great range, it lacks a little on the low end.


I Would Own This Kite Because it’s the best wave kite out there in my opinion. Its drift ability really does let riders park it and forget it!


The Drifter Best Suits a dedicated wave kiter, but also great for a recreational free rider. Its forgiving nature, drift and easy relaunch also make it a great option for a beginner looking to progress into the waves.


The 2016 Cabrinha Drifter is available in 4.5-13 meter sizes, starting at $1,149. Demo it at the Big Winds Demo Center, located in the Columbia River Gorge.



Jason Watts hails from Beaverton, Oregon, and weighs 190 pounds. He has kited in waves off Maui, Chile, and New Zealand. When he’s not chasing the surf, he’s riding his snowboard or mountain bike, or helping kiters choose their first directional board.