Starboard is based out of Thailand and to be frank they’re one of the best companies at making Paddle Surf Boards. The Pocket Rocket is a staple for high level paddle surfers and even though I don’t personally ride one (because ya know, I’m not on that level) I don’t hesitate when a good surfer asks for advice on SUP Surf Boards.
|Starboard Tandem Inflatable||Tandem||10' 6"||Inflatable|
The Line Up
Starboard’s speciality is the SUP surfin’, it’s not that they don’t make a solid all-around board they’re just an expensive board to start on. There boards essentially start at a $1000 and go up from there.
The All Around Boards: Atlas & Blend
The Key Specs: Atlas
Max Weight: 110kg** approximate
The Atlas features a triple fin setup so it’s actually possible to use this SUP for surfing. That said, it’s primarily an all-around board and realistically it’ll only work with some light surf. It should also be noted that even though it’s setup for three fins it’s only sold with a center fin.
It’s a terrific step up from some of the cheaper inflatables on the market and gives you a bit more versatility in terms of what you can do with it. A little bit of touring isn’t out of this boards range either.
The Key Specs: Blend
Max Weight: 85kg ** approximate
The blender is slightly shorter and has a significantly slimmer profile. It comes equipped with a single US center fin, however it does have two spots for FCS compatible side fins. It’s probably a little bit more versatile than the Atlas, simply because it’s a little less bulky and easier to maneuver. Again, this wouldn’t be my first choice for SUP surf but if you’re just looking to get dabble in surf, but mostly you just want to paddle this is a pretty damn fine option.
The Surf Boards: The Converse and The Pocket Rocket
I briefly discussed the Pocket Rocket in my main paddle board review article. If you’re pretty slick on a SUP surf board you probably know what you want. If you haven’t tried the Rocket, it comes highly recommended by buddies who’re way better on a Surf SUP than I am.
The Key Specs: Converse
The Converse is a terrific board to get started on if you’re just learning the ropes of Paddle Surfing. A lot of guys who surf have asked me if Paddle Surfing will be easy for them. Yes, it will be in a lot of regards. Just like if you’ve snowboarded your whole life, skiing is going to be pretty easy relative to the next guy. That said it is a bit of a different animal and if you’ve never done it before you may struggle even if you’re a decent surfer.
Somewhat surprisingly, the side fins on this board aren’t included. A little bit mickey mouse for a board that’s advertised as a Paddle Surf Board. That said it features an EVA core and wooden stringers for added support. It’s fairly lightweight and moves well (once you add those fins!)
It’s pretty damn tough to find a decent Paddle Surf Board for under $1000.
The Converse is currently on sale for just $732 + shipping, which is a steal for a surf SUP from one the better manufacturers on the market.
Astro Tandem: The Like Being On A Tandem Bicycle Only It’s a SUP
The Key Specs: Astro Tandem
Max Weight: A lot. (Only kidding) Approximately 225 kg
Uhm, so I’ve never been on a tandem SUP before. I’ve had the misses sit at the front while I paddle. I’ve had my dog sit on a dog mat while I paddle. Two people paddling… in sync? That sounds whacky and a lot of fun.
I’m hoping to find a spot that rents these bad boys out somewhere in Vancouver. Tandem bicycles are hilariously fun and a little silly, I imagine a tandem SUP would be the exact same experience. One guy or gal, doing most of the work while the other sits in the back and pretends to peddle. Except on a SUP that wouldn’t work as well because you’d constantly have to switch sides, oh this sounds comedic. Can’t wait to try it out and when I do I’ll report back.