Bark Paddleboards Reviewed: The Best Race Competition SUP’s on the Planet

Bark Paddleboards Reviews

Joe Bark is a Paddleboard and Surf board shaper. If you read his bio on the website you quickly find out he is also everything else that is ocean. He’s a little bit like Poseidon in that way. He’s also one of the most copied paddle board shapers on the planet (okay he probably is THE most copied shaper on the planet).

He’s been shaping paddle boards long before paddle boarding was a thing and the result is world class boards that have finished atop the podium more then any other brand on the market.

BoardTypeLengthPriceOverall Rating
Bark Paddleboard Tuftile Racing12'6"$$$
Bark 14' DominatorRacing14'$$$
Bark 12'6" Competitor Pro-EliteRacing12'6"$$$$

The Line Up Bark Paddleboards

You’ll find Bark boards under the Surftech brand, often designed and shaped for legendary waterman Laird Hamilton. As a total aside, can you imagine being that good across that many disciplines?

12’6” Surtech Lard Bark Tuflite Paddleboard

Turflite is Surftech’s premium epoxy construction that consistently out performs other, cheaper imitations. It features five different layers each designed to provide a lightweight, yet incredibly durable board.

This is Bark’s cheapest SUP model, although when I say cheap, it’s still a damn expensive board. It’s not the lightest board in their lineup but for a starter race board this board will do nicely.

It performs exceptionally well in choppy conditions but again, isn’t as slick as some of the other 12’6” boards on the market.

14’ Bark Dominator – The Top Flat Water Race Paddle Board On The Market?

I’ve test driven a ton of boards from short SUP surf boards, to all-around beginner boards and of course race boards. I haven’t had the chance to take the Dominator for a paddle but I hope to in the near future.

With that said, the paddling communities general consensus is this might currently be the fastest 14” board on flat water right now. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Joe Bark has created yet another incredible board.

It’s only 27 1/2” wide which is quite narrow for an average paddler and just 7” thick. There was an excellent first hand review written over at SUP Global which talks in great detail about how stable this board is despite it’s dimensions.

This board is not for the casual paddler. It’s really not for anyone outside of the folks who’re looking to go fast, really bloody fast.

The board uses Surftech’s Pro-Elite (isn’t that redundant?) series technology which is essentially a fancy way of saying incredibly durable and light weight materials.

Shit you’d find in aerospace. You dig?

One important thing to mention is it’s very (VERY) easy to leave indents on the carbon fiber boards. Even the aerospace fancy shit can’t help – use extreme caution when transporting any Bark Pro-Elite model.

12’6” Bark Pro-Elite Competitor Paddle Board

The Competitor is another high level competition board designed from Bark. It’s quite a bit more versatile than the Dominator. I have literally never heard anyone say anything negative about this board.

Do you know when you check your pocket after a night at the bar and you find not one but two crisp 20’s? Riding the competitor must be like that, not only does it out perform (in terms of speed) several pin tails at an equal price point the Bark Competitor also gives you that wow I didn’t expect that feeling when you initially step on and feel the stability beneath your feet.

Like I said, it’s like finding a couple of fresh 20’s, but probably a little more exciting.

Overall, if you’re looking for a race board look no further than Bark. It’s going to cost you but the design is flawless and it’s always surprising how stable and quick these boards are when you get going. The foot wells are always comfortable and reassuring.

If you’re going to spend mucho dineros on a paddle board for comps, Bark should be the first brand you look at.