Stand-up paddleboarding is easy to learn, a great core workout, and a fun way to explore. But with many board and paddle set-ups costing more than $1,000, it can be difficult to commit to, especially for folks who live in places where SUPing is possible only a few months out of the year. And those reservations don’t even include the question of all the space a solid board takes up.
That’s why we were so excited to check out the new inflatable SUP (iSUP), theWeekender, from Ten Toes. The board and oar set-up costs $600 and includes a pump, paddle, and patch kit. Deflated, the board is smaller than a foot locker. Getting the board inflated takes five to 10 minutes. Pop in the removable fin and you’re ready to start SUPing.
We took it on the Pacific, near Malibu, California, as well as various lakes in the Eastern Sierra, just south of Yosemite. On the water the board tracked well and felt stable, even when it got a little choppy. We even let our 10-year-old hitch a ride, and there was plenty of float. We also appreciated the durability and easily adjustable paddle.
The 10-foot board made of military-grade PVC is comparable to SUPs that cost hundreds of dollars more. It totes a 275-pound weight limit, but can accommodate a few pounds more so it’s suitable for cruising around with a passenger, even for bigger guys. Inflated, theWeekender measures 10 feet by 30 inches by 6 inches. A few inches narrower than some other beginner boards makes it feel faster. A wider board might be a bit better for SUP yoga, but yoga is still doable. It also comes with a handle.
The only things we'd change: The pump isn’t great. You can remove the hose, which is great for storage, but it’s tough to get a good seal where the hose attaches to the pump (where it attaches to the board is solid). As you pump, the pump can leak, which can affect the gauge, making an accurate reading more difficult. And we would've liked if theWeekender included a backpack to make hiking to the lake easier. [$600; tentoesboards.com]