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Shaun Hunter | 08.09.2019

ISLE Explorer Inflatable Paddle Board specs

  • Length: 11'
  • Width: 32"
  • Thickness: 6"
  • Weight: 22 lbs.
  • Capacity: 275 lbs.
  • Construction: military-grade PVC
  • Includes: Dual-action high pressure pump, Carry backpack, 3-piece adjustable carbon-shaft paddle, Leash, PVC patch kit

Where To Get It

$795 • Amazon | ISLE Surf and SUP

The Bottom Line: ISLE's 2019 Explorer Inflatable SUP is the company's addition to their all-around paddle line. The Explorer combines high-quality construction with 6" thickness and two built-in bungee straps and extra D-rings to make a stable board capable of carrying and handling extra gear. Made to combine portability with speed and ease of use and overall stability on the water, the Explorer is aimed at everyone from beginners and the occasional user to those who feel comfortable out on the water in a variety of conditions.


The Explorer packs easily into a backpack for convenient carry. Shaun Hunter.

I'll preface this by saying that I'm a huge fan of inflatable SUPs. I've owned a couple over the years and have never had one break or puncture, instead upgrading models that are a better fit for my needs as time goes on.

The reasons to choose an inflatable model over a fiberglass board can be the ease of which you can fit an inflatable into the backseat or trunk of a smaller car rather than requiring a roof-mounting rack for your vehicle. Price can also be a factor, with inflatables generally costing less than fiberglass boards in comparable sizes and dimensions. And finally, inflatables and their accessories can fit into a carrying pack that you can strap on and hike with. This has let me carry my board down to beaches or lakes and then inflate and strap my gear on top to paddle to backcountry and otherwise hard-to-reach locations.

After having put ISLE's 11-foot Explorer model (ISLE also makes a 12-foot model) to some use, it seems clear that ISLE has found and improved upon the drawbacks of older inflatables I've used. The Explorer Inflatable has front and rear bungee straps, allowing users to secure a good amount of gear, but also has additional D-rings so that even more gear can be strapped down if desired. The attachment of the removable bottom center fin can be done quickly and easily with a locknut able to be loosened and tightened by hand. This is a vast improvement over other inflatables I've had, which require the use (and carrying) of an Allen wrench or screwdriver. In fact, aside from the included dual-action pump, no other tools are required to get the board inflated and on the water.

Finally, ISLE's carry backpack is the best inflatable carry pack I've seen. It has adjustable shoulder straps, along with hip and chest straps, and a padded frame, making it resemble a backpacking pack in terms of comfort and load balance. This is especially helpful since the bulky size of the deflated rolled-up boards can still be an awkward load when strapped to your back.

With a thickness of 6 inches, the Explorer emphasizes stability and handles well on bodies of water from calm lakes to ocean environments that have some choppy surface motion. As with any SUP, users can opt for a model built for speed or one built for stability. The Explorer does have a pointed-nose, but aside from that, all features tend toward the secure and stable side of the SUP spectrum. The only area that I found the board lacking in was its maneuverability, seeming to have a wider-than-usual turning radius while in motion. Though for an all-around board that can handle well in a wide variety of conditions, I'll always opt for stability over a smaller board that might be more susceptible to choppy waters.

The included accessories that come with the Explorer Inflatable SUP package include the carrying bag, a coil leash, a high-pressure dual-action pump (this pump has a specialized fit on the valve, meaning that users must use the pump and can't connect to something like a car-charger or battery-operated pump), and a three-piece carbon-shafted paddle that is quickly and easily adjustable for height and of good quality to make it fine for nearly all recreational users.

Unpacking and inflating the board takes about 5 to 10 minutes, while deflating and packing up is slightly quicker—although with all my inflatables I'll typically unroll it later at home to hose off any sand or dirt that sticks to it while rolling it up immediately after use.

Overall, I'm a huge fan of inflatable SUP's for their ease of transporting and the fact that I can hike with it to access water that would be difficult to reach with a hard board. ISLE's 2019 Explorer is a vast improvement in all the small details over my previous board from a different manufacturer. The durability and stability of the Explorer and its accessories are impressive, and the board stands up well to choppy water conditions with ease. ISLE's Explorer Inflatable SUP is a great all-around board and I've been extremely happy with it!


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