Although many of you are aware of my continuing love kayaking, surfskis, kayakfishing and fine rum, you may not be aware of my latest obsessions: surfing and stand-up paddling.
This is an 11' x 31" crossover standup board. Weighs just 30 lb, convenient carry handle in the middle. It is designed as a good beginning to intermediate board. Crossover?
That means it's good for flat-water cruising - as well as surfing small to moderate surf. There's enough surface area to catch almost any small wake or wave, and stay on. It is just stable enough to fish from, although a true fishing SUP (stand up paddleboard) will be another foot longer, perhaps an inch or two wider. A brand called "BOTE" actually provides for a good sized cooler for both sitting and storage, plus some lash points up front for additional gear, even a leaning post!
Stand-up has terrific potential for flats fishing, as the ability to sightfish from a standing position makes a huge difference. Believe me, I've spent a couple of days with Guide Randy in Key West - he standing and me in the usual kayak seated position. He saw everything, I saw nothing and was complete dependent on his view.
Now for the shameless plug...
Behold Mario, the owner of Paddles and Boards concession (Link) located on Sunrise Blvd at the lovely George English Park and launch area. Mario is a terrific guy, and before he knew how er, famous I am, Mario spent considerable time advising and helping me understand and choose a board. Even when I ended up buying a great used board from our old friend, the obsessive/compulsive Chef Mike, Mario was still pleased at my good fortune and proceeded to give me what amounted to a free lesson in the lagoon adjacent to his launch.
What a guy, ergo this shameless free plug...
Who: Mario of Paddles and Boards
What: Rental, sales, beach pickup/delivery, tours and lessons on paddleboards, and new/used sales.
Where: George English Park on Sunrise Blvd. in Ft. Lauderdale, just inland from the ocean.
Why: trust me, unlike my biking or kayaking this is a full body core workout. I thought this was just marketing hype - but trust me - it is.
Contact: see link above, telephone number is in the pic.
Again, thanks to Mario. Stay tuned for the fishing aspect of paddleboards on the flats...