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Planning Your Summer SUP Adventure

Posted by Catherine Morris

There’s nothing better than loading up your paddle board and going on a SUP adventure and, with the summer months fast approaching, now is the perfect time to get planning. Deciding where to go, when to go and what you’ll need to take is all part of the adventure, and to paraphrase a well know saying, a bit of prior preparation generally increases the chances of a successful trip! Which is good news for everyone involved…

So let’s get to it and start with the all important question of where to go….

Where To Go For a Paddle Boarding Adventure

The first thing to say is that you don’t necessarily have to go that far from home! There are paddle board adventures waiting to happen in all sorts of places and as long as you make the necessary checks (more about this later) there’s a lot of fun to be had. Maybe it’s a local river you’ve never explored, a different part of the coast or even a city river, all of these can make for some epic SUP adventures.

Looking further afield, there are of course thousands of great places to paddleboard around the world all of which offer something a bit different and plenty of opportunities for some great adventures. Some of our personal favourites here at Red Original HQ include the River Danube in Hungary and the stunning Lake Moraine in Canada. We also recently fell in love with the coast around Faro in Southern Portugal, the location for our Red Original Photoshoot, the results of which can be seen across the website. A stunning coastal region, this area also includes the Ria Fromosa nature park, home to some beautiful lagoons and waterways, ideal for a SUP adventure.

Top Travel Tips for A Great Paddle Board Adventure

Wherever you choose to head for a SUP adventure, it’s important to make sure you’re fully prepared, not only so you get the most out of the trip but also to stay safe. Over the years we’ve learnt a lot about doing these trips and here are some of our top tips…

Plan your route

Being spontaneous is great, but having a plan is better! Knowing where you’re heading and the location of some epic stop off points (such as great look-out or a fantastic waterside bar) will really help make it a memorable adventure. Also make sure you know the tide times for the whole adventure. Not only is this important for safety but also makes a big difference to how easy it is to paddle! It’s also important for launching and landing - don’t get caught out and end up having to wade through mud to get back to the car! Also consider where you are going to leave kit and where you can leave your vehicle. If you are struggling to find a SUP route, look for kayak routes or wild swimming locations as they are generally ideal for SUP too!

Pack enough provisions

Make sure have enough food and water to last the duration of your trip, or at least until you can replenish supplies – and make sure you know where, on route, you can do this.

Campfire on a SUP adventure

Plan a stop

Take your time. Be bold – take a tent or tarpaulin and plan an overnight stop along the route. You can get mini collapsible grills which are easy to pack too.

Forage with knowledge

If you know what to look for and what is safe to eat, then this can be a great way to supplement your food supply!

Packing for a paddle board trip
Pack the right kit

If you're in a cooler climate, plan for the worst in case the weather is changeable and pack the right kit so you can get dry and warm if you need to. A waterproof deck bag will ensure all your kit stays dry.

Stay hydrated on the water

When you’re paddling you’ll be burning more calories (which requires more water) and also dehydrating through sweating, so it's important to stay hydrated while on the water. You’re likely to drink more water if it’s refrigerator-cold, so pop ice in your bottle before you head out. The Red Original Water Bottle will keep your water cold all day!

Leave only your footprints
Take your rubbish home with you and leave everywhere you stop just as you found it.

Take a phone
Even if you’re getting away from it all on your adventure, be sure to take a fully charged phone with you in case of emergency.

Take a fishing line
Why not try and catch your dinner off the back of your board?

Stay Safe While You SUP

No matter where you’re heading on your adventure, safety should always be a priority. And here are some key points to help you stay safe:

  • As well as making sure you know the tide times and conditions, make sure you’ve also checked out the weather forecast for the local area to ensure it is safe to venture out on the water.
  • Always tell someone where you’re going, how long you will be on the water and when you’ll be back. Always take a phone with you in case of emergencies.
  • Wear a personal flotation device. A waistbelt PFD is unobtrusive and simple to wear, and yet could save your life. Wear one!
  • Dress for the conditions. Make sure you’re wearing suitable clothing for your trip. And remember that conditions can change, so be prepared and take wet weather gear and a dry change of clothes, even if the forecast is for good weather.
  • Don’t go it alone. Solo adventures are fun but it’s safer with a friend!

And finally, always remember the mantra “if in doubt, don’t go out”.

Paddling Gear For Your SUP Adventure

The key to packing for a paddle board adventure is to be smart with the storage space you have available. It’s not possible to bring abasolutely everything you might need, but here are the trip essentials that we couldn’t do without:

Coolbag – the best adventures always feature an al fresco feast or ice cold drink in the summer sunshine. A coolbag should come with you on any adventure, keeping your refreshments cold and dry.

Paddle board lock

Water Bottle – Vital to make sure you stay hydrated. But they don't just have to be for water. Thecapacity is enough for a bottle of wine & will keep it cold! Or you could take hot water to make a fresh coffee.

Board Lock – the adventure isn’t just about being on the water. You might stop off to climb up a mountain, have a game on the beach, or a drink at a pub. Using a lock means you can leave your boards securely behind as you go explore.

Microfibre Towel – small, lightweight, easy to take with you. You can use it to dry off, sit or lie on, change under, wrap up in, and it will dry in no time.

Go Explore

So there we have it, our guide to planning your SUP adventure. What are you waiting for?! Start planning your trip today.