Only best products in a given category receive “A” grade.
Paddle Board Highlights
Who is it for?
If you’re looking for a fast, non-inflatable, race board to paddle then the Viper from Pau Hana is worth a look. This stand up paddle (SUP) board comes in the Vector Carbon Fiber construction which is relatively durable and has its ups and downs. Because the board is 24 inches wide the Viper is very unstable, however, it is fast. The board has 2.01 lbs per foot and weighs 28.2 lbs total which is pretty lightweight for a 14ft board. Its shape makes the Viper a race board that should be used by advanced paddlers and was designed for competition. Its construction and shape combined best fit this board for flatwater racing. Retailing at $2,199, the board is in the high-tier price point but is among the best that the brand has to offer.
On first impressions, the graphics and color are good, the shape design is quite thoughtful and the construction appears durable. The Viper has some appealing looks, coming with an interesting mix of color and graphics that go well with the vector carbon fiber construction of the board. The shape design is unique for boards in these categories and has features made primarily for racing with speed. The construction does appear as something that can withstand frequent but careful use. This paddle board is relatively easy to carry for a 14 ft board and the glide does feel fast which is to be expected since speed-centric design is heavily at focus. And once you put it all together, the Viper is an unstable but fast board that only lightweight and skilled paddlers will comfortably glide away.
Primary UseRace Use
Paddle Boards fall into two broad categories, All-Around and Specialty boards, with all-around designed primarily for recreation while speciality boards for top performance in specific disciplines
Durability is largely a result of the board construction and shape, with more durable boards typically carrying more materials (added layers, PVC, etc) and as such adding to the weight.
Stability is a product of construction and shape, where boards w/ 30”+ wide and 200+ liters in volume offer plenty of stability for your AVG adult while a board under 26” wide is a challenge.
Glide is a result of board shape and construction, w/ boards weighing under 30lbs and designed for racing offering best glide while recreational boards normally being on the slow side.
Dimensions14' x 24" x 6.5"
Industry standard in board dimensions reads: L (length, from nose to tail) x W (width, from rail to rail at midpoint length), and H (height, from top to bottom of board at midpoint length).
Standup paddle boards tend to fall into 4 different weight classes: extremely lightweight (under 20 lbs), lightweight (20-28 lbs), average weight (28-35 lbs), heavy (above 35 lbs).
Volume is a key metric to determine how much weight a board can carry. Boards w/ 200+ liters offer most floatation with boards under 150 liters typically for high-performance surf.
Capacity is the max cargo weight a stand up paddle board can carry, considering not only the paddler’s weight but whatever else the paddler may choose to carry alongside him/her.
Add-on’s include bungee cords, a minimalist way to haul things; Connexsup, which allows for all sorts of attachments, even fishing rods; and FCS II/Connect, for easy fin instal.
HandleInternal Ergo Grip
Handles directly affect carrying ease, with external grip handles (Liftsup & EZgrab) offering most comfort, Internal Ergo Grip the mid-tier comfort, and box handles as least comfortable.
Fishing rod holders and/or paddle holders can make paddling that much more pleasant, esp. when needing holders for the rod or having a safe place for the paddle during yoga.
|12 Feet 6 Inches||24/25/26 Inches||6.5 Inches||199/207/216 L|
|14 Feet 0 Inches||24/25/26 Inches||6.5 Inches||220/229/238 L|
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