So I have been SUPing for a few years with the Costco inflatable 11’ long and 35" wide. Now I am ready for an upgrade and a second SUP. Looking to get a hard one for additional performance and speed. I am 5’ 9" tall and weigh 165 lbs. It is down to these three, all 12’ 6" long. What say you?
Starboard Touring Lite Tech: 29" wide, 30lbs
2023 Touring Paddle Board » Starboard SUP
Cruiser V-Max LE: 31.5" wide, 28.5lbs
Cruiser SUP V-MAX® LE 12'6" x 32" Touring Wood/Carbon/PVC Paddle Board
Bote Traveller: 28" wide, 34lbs
Traveller 12'6" Classic Cypress Paddle Board | SUP | BOTE
I would go with the Starboard, if it fits your budget. Are you planning on paddling on protected waters or do you need a stable board for rough water downwinding etc. It would be best if you define where you paddle and what your goals are. Going from 35 inches wide to 29" will be quite a jolt, don’t get discouraged the first few times you go out, at your weight, the starboard should be plenty stable once you get some paddling time in.
The Starboard is comparable in price but doesnt come with a paddle which makes it a bit more money, but thats not an issue. If its the better one, the price is within the ballpark for me to get it. I was also leaning towards the SB but not exactly sure why. I live in Long Island and usually prefer to SUP in flat waters but due to winds, wake of boats I can usually find myself in a little bit of chop. I don’t like high level of chop or strong winds, I usually get on my knees during those sections, depending on the severity. I was wondering about going with less width. The SB Touring Lite Tech also comes in a 31" but if I am going to upgrade might as well go for the slimmer version and I figured I would grow into it. I am sort of athletic, run, bike, etc with no major issues of balance. The Traveller pushes the width even lower to 28" and I also dont like the extra weight. The problem with the SB now is that they are hard to come by. The other two I can order now but the SB seems more difficult but I am hoping that towards spring things will improve.
Paddles that usually come in packages with boards are very often not the best quality. In southern California it’s pretty easy to pick up a used high quality paddle, as there are lot of SUP paddlers. You may be looking at spending ~ $300 for a decent carbon paddle new.