Just seven years ago, stand-up paddle-boarding was a barely known, old-school tradition practiced by serious water men who wanted to connect to the roots of surfing. Today it’s a bonafide mainstream sport that’s migrated inland from beaches to Middle America, where it can feel more like an outgrowth of flat water kayaking. Long, slender, almost boat like boards now dominate the SUP market, as day touring and recreational racing have become the biggest areas of growth. But no matter where you paddle, the draw is the same: easy learning curve, minimal equipment, awesome view, and that feeling that you’re walking on water.
Outside Magazine’s test team spent months riding dozens of boards in conditions ranging from hot and still to wintry and wild. These are their top picks, with at least one of these bound to fit your needs – BY MARK ANDERS.
2013 GEAR OF THE YEAR – Bic Sport Wing Ace-Tec $1,299
A killer flatwater SUP made by BIC Sport, the Wing Ace-Tec is bombproof: a molded epoxy board with a thin thermoformed shell makes it more durable than most boards on the market. And yet it’s relatively lightweight at 34 pounds. A displacement hull with a flat midsection makes for a speedy, race worthy ride that cuts through chop. At 30 inches wide and over six inches thick, the Wing Ace-Tec is stable but won’t feel like a dog to seasoned paddlers. In short: a practical, durable, affordable, fun-to-paddle SUP. 12’6″ (also available in 11′); bicsup.com STABILITY: 4.5 / GLIDE: 4.5.
This year, Bic launches its One Design Challenge, a series of short (half-mile or so) community-based events in which competitors race a twelve foot- six-inch Wing Ace-Tec SUP. The BIC SUP One Design Challenge is an international challenge with fun-based competitions where the goal is enjoying the day, not worrying about who’s got the best gear. The format is the usual One-Design principle: all competitors race on the same rigid board design, racing round pre-defined courses, all under a set of simple race rules with a clear aim : racers having fun, racing for fun, and no one being at any advantage through « superior » equipment.
To know more about SUP gear available in India by BIC, contact:
Reg. Office: 2/714/A, Anandi Niwas,
Near Water Tank,
New Vaddem, Vasco-Da-Gama,
Phone No.: +91 832 2528012,
Mobile No : +91 9422641419,
Fax : +91 832 2528012,
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org