I am excited to announce my partnership with C4 Waterman stand-up paddle boards this summer. Locally-owned by Wenonah Canoes, a Minnesota-based company, they have a very unique line of paddle boards that I think are perfect for the ‘Land of 10,000 Lakes’! So keep your eyes peeled- periodically throughout the summer I’ll be sharing my paddle boarding adventures across Minnesota and at the MN State Parks with you!
I have secretly desired a paddle board since my first time out on one, about 5 years ago. It was a phenomenal experience, but I never got one because I couldn’t get past how difficult it was to transport the boards. I have a tiny Honda Civic that really doesn’t lend itself to transporting much of anything…
Fast forward to when C4 Waterman contacted me to see if I’d be interested in partnering with them on their inflatable SUPs I jumped at the chance!
A paddle board that you can inflate and deflate- What!?
My first thoughts were; “Amazing- I’ll be able to go places with it- travel with it- and it will fit in my car!” And then I started to wonder, “Will it actually work? How can you possibly blow up something to be as strong and sturdy as the paddle boards that I’m used to?”
All of my doubts were instantly eliminated as soon as I blew up my paddle board for the first time. I can’t tell a difference between my inflatable SUP and the “standard” SUPs.
How it works:
The deflated SUP rolls up into a long roll- like a Twinkie- and fits into a long backpack for easy transportability, along with a hand-pump. When you arrived at your lake destination of choice you unroll the board, like pictured above and start to pump.
The pump hose twists on and connects to the paddle board for an easy seal as you pump in the air. There are directions available right there as well that specify how many PSI you want to pump into the SUP.
The C4 Waterman Inflatable SUP (XXL) floats optimally at 15 to 17 PSI, although you’ll survive at 10 PSI if you’re just going out for a short time and not doing anything other than relaxing and enjoying the day. There’s a gauge at the top of the pump so you know when you’re done.
It is definitely a work out to pump the SUP up completely. It takes about 10 minutes to pump from start to finish. By the end you will be ready for a break. My recommendation is to give yourself at least 10 minutes break between pumping up the paddle board and setting off on the water- unless your arms are super buff you’ll need the break before using your arms to steer.
Once your SUP is inflated it’s easy to carry out to the water and head off- there is even a handle in the middle of the board for easy transportability!
When you finish your adventure you want to let out ALL the air out of your paddle board. Push the nozzle where you screwed in the pump originally to let the air will rush out. Twist the nozzle as you push it down so that it will stay open and you can start pushing the air out- just like you would with a blow-up mattress.
Note: the first burst of air is under quite a bit of pressure, so don’t push the nozzle while your head is up close or you’ll get more air than you bargained for.
Packing up your inflatable SUP
The first few times I went out I couldn’t figure out how to get the C4 Waterman Inflatable SUP rolled up small enough to fit back into the bag. The fins at the back kept making my “roll” just a little too big so I threw it all into the back of my car and practiced once I got home.
The trick to packing up the SUP is to roll it up tight. Start on the end without the fins and roll as tightly as you can. Push out any lingering air as you roll. Inside your backpack is a nylon clip that you can use to hold your roll together when you get done. You should be able to easily fit it into the bag if it’s rolled tight enough. It might take you two tries just to get the air all squeezed out. Your pump should also fit easily into the bag with your deflated SUP.
Zip it all up, slip it on your back and head out on your next adventure!
Although stand-up paddle boards were originally created by surfers to stay in shape, I love taking it out for leisurely paddles around a lake or two- especially on a hot day. Even my pup has gotten the hang of paddle boarding and has pretty much claimed the helm as his!
Disclosure: I have partnered with C4 Waterman and they provided me with the XXL Inflatable 10’8″ paddle board and pump, as well as the 3-piece HOE Adjustable paddle completely free of charge. All opinions expressed are my own.