Ultimate Review of The Best Paddle Boards for Fishing in 2021

Paddleboards have been around for a long time now, and people have traditionally used them for leisure transport, but recently they’ve started to catch on with anglers.

See, while fishing is generally thought of as a boating or shore sport, paddleboards are well optimized for fishing acivity.

Fishing SUPs come with seats, secure storage, rod holders, and cooler straps to optimize the fishing experience.

For me, however, their greatest draw is that they allow you to fish while standing. This standing position lets you sight fish better and increases the chances of a hookup. Sure, you can stand up on a kayak, but you’re not always up and sighting the fish like on a SUP.

And that’s not all!

Fishing paddleboards are stealthier and don’t draw as much attention or water as skiffs or kayaks do, so it’s easy to work your way into shallower waters without scaring the fish.

Plus, paddleboards are fun to use, easy to handle, and will keep you high and dry.

But then, using a paddleboard for fishing can be something of a challenge, especially if you pick the wrong option. Wind and swell often keep your balance in check, anchoring can be a nightmare, and then there’s your gear, which, at any moment, could end up in the drink.

Regardless of how cautious you are with your paddleboard, the degree to which you’ll enjoy SUP fishing will be determined, in part, by your choice of board.

As a bare minimum, you’ll want a board with a large, expansive deck for stability while offering enough room for your fishing cargo. There’s also a wide range of factors to consider, including glide, durability, and maneuverability.

For this reason, we’ve prepared a comprehensive guide outlining the best options on the market. We’ve also included a handy buying guide to help with your selection.

Table of Contents

Quick Comparison Table!

Sea Eagle FishSUP 

4.8

4.8/5
Isle Sportsman Fishing Paddle Board

4.6

4.6/5
Airhead Bonefish Fishing Paddle Board

4.5

4.5/5
Elkton Outdoors Grebe Fishing Paddle board

4.3

4.3/5
BOTE Rackham Aero Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board

4.0

4/5

The Best Paddleboards for Fishing For The Money

Best Paddle Boards for Fishing for the money

#1 Sea Eagle Fish SUP - EDITOR'S CHOICE

4.7/5
4.2/5
4.8/5

An increasing number of anglers are discovering how fun and convenient SUP fishing can be, and the Sea Eagle delivers what anglers have been asking for—a rugged and stable fishing platform that comes with everything you’d ever want in a fishing SUP.

The new Sea Eagle offers a convenient way to access your favorite fishing spots, and, even better, it comes loaded with a great feature that all professional anglers will appreciate.

Features and Benefits

Build quality

The Sea Eagle doesn’t cut corners with its build quality, especially the durability.

The FS126 is an incredibly well-made board utilizing military-grade Decitex drop stitch with an outer PVC skin that is virtually indestructible.

But just how durable is the construction?

Well, according to user reviews, it’s possible to navigate lakes and ponds containing plenty of submerged trees, stumps, and sharp barnacles without the worry of a leak.

Additionally, you can drag the board over a rocky jetty or shore without worrying about scratches.

And that’s not all!

The FS126’s hardware is also top-notch, as the fins, grab handles, and stainless steel D-rings won’t fail even under pressure and will offer a long-lasting experience.

In particular, the deck is padded with quality EVA-foam that not only offers a stable grip when chumming but can also withstand the abrasion and punctures of fishing hooks.

Dimension

There’s nothing discreet about the Sea Eagle FS126.

First, it has a massive length of 12 feet, which is large enough to comfortably spend a day on the water with all of your fishing gear and even a partner. The deck is spacious, and it offers plenty of wiggle room, which is critical when chumming or reeling.

Next in line, anglers will love the massive 40 inches width. Honestly, rarely do you come across such an expansive width for a board.

While the width may limit the board’s accessibility to backwaters and curtail its speed, it offers unprecedented stability, mostly when jigging or reeling in big fish.

It’s also an excellent option for beginners who are still working on their balance and tendency to wobble.

Stability on the Sea Eagle is further underlined by a swallowtail design that gives the board incredible stability, allowing you to confidently cast when standing up without fear of taking a swim.

Comfort

The Sea Eagle is much better than even we expected, and we couldn’t believe how comfortable it was.

With the board, you have the choice of paddling while standing or sitting comfortably in the swivel seat and using the paddle.

For longer distance fishing, you have the option of fixing an electric trolling motor which offers more power and strength to your paddling.

Features

The Sea Eagle FS126 will amaze you with the number of features it holds, all tailored to make your fishing experience an enjoyable pleasure.

For instance, the deck features a handy 36″ fish ruler, so no more worrying about losing, forgetting, or dropping your traditional ruler.

There are also eight stainless steel D-rings running along the sides of the EVA foam traction that are perfect for attaching a kayak seat, or even other essential fishing gear such as a cooler, tackle, and chum box.

Finally, the board’s center has a convenient carrying handle which eases the inflated board’s portability. There is a grab handle on the board’s nose that offers an easy way to pull the board in and out of water.

That said, the Sea Eagle is a dedicated fishing SUP and not the right paddleboard for everyone. It doesn’t do very well in maneuverability, but that’s not a surprise considering its dimensions. However, it ticks all the boxes for the best paddleboard for anglers.

Pros

Cons

#2 ISLE Sportsman Fishing Paddle Board - Best Lightweight Option

4.6/5
4.3/5
4.6/5

ISLE Surf and SUP never seem to go wrong with any of their creations, and the ISLE Sportsman is no different.

Designed for enthusiastic anglers, this fishing paddleboard has everything you would wish to see on a fishing board.

From the build quality to the design, this option ticks all the boxes for the best fishing paddle board.

Features and Benefits

Build quality

As far as the build quality is concerned, we’re convinced the ISLE Sportsman is an example to follow in the industry, and this can be deduced by looking closer at the board’s construction.

We shall not go into details on the manufacturing process, but, undeniably, it’s the closest you can get to an inflatable.

Here’s why:

First, the board utilizes a high-density PVC material, so you can forget about dings, leaks, and blown seams even when navigating murky, obstacle-ridden waters and lagoons.

But that’s a standard among paddleboards.

The biggest differentiator is the Airtech Fusion Lite construction, making the board 30% lighter than competing models while maintaining quality. 

To give you a general perspective, the Sportsman at 27 pounds is roughly half the weight of the Sea Eagle, so backpacking anglers will have an easier time carrying the board to their on-point destination.

Dimension

The ISLE Sportsman isn’t anywhere close to the Sea Eagle’s dimensions, but make no mistake, it’s not a modest board either.

It’s still a relatively expansive option with a length of 11 feet and a width of 36 inches.

The board is incredibly stable, which is important for anglers as they rock and shake more than average users. It’s also an excellent option for beginners who have not yet mastered the art of balancing.

Stability aside, the substantial length translates to a larger carrying capacity. From coolers to dry bags to gearboxes, you can carry a ton of gear on this SUP board.

For anglers who are concerned about their equipment, forward and stern bungee cargo areas make it easy to secure your fishing gear.

When it comes to thickness, the ISLE Sportsman’s six inches keep the board afloat and, more importantly, rigid enough to hold a substantial weight of 320 pounds.

Grooved traction deck pad

The Sportsman strikes a great deal of balance with their EVA traction pad that isn’t only comfortable for your feet, but also offers a friendly resting platform when kneeling.

It doesn’t irritate your feet either and will offer excellent gripping power to keep your feet steady on the SUP.

The textured surface maintains your feet grip, ensuring neither you nor your gear slips when you encounter choppy water. Simultaneously, the grooves help with displacing the water in case the board goes underwater.

Features

For a genuinely enriching angling experience, this board comes with a host of features, including reinforced carry handles to help carry the board.

It also comes with four additional, center rail-mounted D-rings to give you the option of adding more bungees to your SUP or securely strap other fishing accessories.

At the same time, the three gear mounts can be used for rod holders, and while they’re not in ideal positions, they deliver more value than an inconvenience.

Pros

Cons

#3 Airhead Bonefish Fishing Paddle Board - Best Value Purchase

4.4/5
4.5/5
4.5/5

There’s a lot to love about the Airhead Bonefish Board as this dedicated paddleboard is designed to make your fishing experience both practical and fun.

And going by the customer reviews, this option is super stable and rigid and will see you through several seasons without the need for a replacement.

Features and Benefits

Build quality

Bonefish’s overall build quality is impressive, and will not shirk at taking on rough waters’ knocks and bumps or improper handling.

The PVC drop-stitch construction offers a solid build, allowing you to navigate mangroves with submerged stumps, trees, and sharp barnacles without worrying about leaks or tears.

It’s such a sturdy option that you can even drag the board across a rocky beach or jetties without scratches or wear.

Similarly, the Bonefish’s hardware is also durable, with the fins, rod holders, D-rings, and other components offering reliable performance.

Dimension

Like our previously reviewed options, the Bonefish is quite large, measuring 11 feet by 38 inches wide.

It’s almost as long as a racing iSUP, so you get plenty of space to hold your fishing accessories, including a more relaxed seat and other cargo space. 

Additionally, the large platform gives you plenty of wiggle room, which is necessary when casting your fishing line.

At the same time, the width offers a stable platform, allowing you to stand and cast your reel without taking a swim.

We also found it stable enough to reel wiggling fish without getting tipped into the water.

But what I like most about the board’s stability is the triple-valve construction. Typically, paddleboards come with a single valve, but this option has a central chamber and two auxiliary chambers on the side that make the whole platform stable for maximum peace of mind.

However, given what we’ve just mentioned, we expected the Bonefish to come with at least a six-inch standard thickness, but you only get four inches.

It’s not a deal-breaker, though, considering you get extra two air chambers to support additional weight.

Deck

For anglers who think that looks are just as important as functionality, the Bonefish doesn’t disappoint either.

The classic teak look on the EVA deck is not only a sight for sore eyes but grippy enough to offer steady footing.

Features

The Bonefish isn’t only super stable, but it also comes with a host of other features to make every second of your angling experience enjoyable.

First, you get four integrated mount pads for holding the rod racks, along with two smaller mounts for storing accessories.

As if that’s not enough, the board comes with a host of holding features, including 10 D-rings and two stretch tie-downs, so loading your gear isn’t an issue.

Pros

Cons

#4 Elkton Outdoors Grebe Fishing Paddleboard - Most Versatile

4.3/5
4.5/5
4.3/5

Elkton Outdoors is already known for making high-quality products, and they’ve released the Grebe which, in our opinion, is among the best fishing SUPs on the market.

This inflatable SUP is versatile but perfect for casual fishing excursions.

It’s also stable, and like most of the previously reviewed options, it comes with plenty of storage space.

Features and Benefits

Build quality

We weren’t surprised to see that the Grebe is built using heavy-duty PVC material, because it’s simply the safest and toughest material any SUP maker can go for.

The drop stitch technology used on this board is superior by any measure and will hold up to the impact of rough handling and choppy water usage.

Accidental brushes against hard rocks in shallow waters or even contact with submerged tree stumps and other sharp objects do little to no harm to the board’s integrity.

The same thing can be said for other board’s accessories as they’re made to match the SUP’s shell. The fins, rods, bungee system, and D-rings are as durable and highly functional as on equivalent boards.

Dimensions

The Grebe is such an outstanding board, to be honest, and coming with 12 feet in length and 36 inches in width, it’s among the bigger options on the SUP market.

In particular, the length appeals to anglers because, with the board, you get so much space for holding your fishing gear and accessories. It also offers plenty of wiggle room.

And to be realistic here, fishing boards don’t always have to be lengthy for an optimal experience. Balance is perhaps the number one factor affecting the board’s performance, as well as yours.

Fortunately, the Grebe doesn’t fail in this department either, with the 36 inch width helping to promote excellent stability and substantial support, especially when taking on big fish.

And while reeling in your catch, your feet won’t get wet thanks to the six-inch thickness, which is rigid. It’s also almost impossible to submerge the board in the water.

Comfortable

Using the Grebe is a delight, with the textured EVA pad on the deck offering a comfy place to rest your feet or even knees while lower down.

It’s also gripped, so you’re sure-footed even when reeling in a big one.

Another feature is the pair of comfort grip handles, placed directly at the board’s center to make carrying it out of water a breeze.

Features

Like any other value purchase, the Grebe comes with a host of accessories and features, including a cargo bungee for keeping your equipment secure.

We also love the hardcore D-rings, which can withstand +100 lbs of force and make an excellent place for tying an anchor.

Pros

Cons

#5 BOTE Rackham Aero Inflatable Stand Up Paddleboard - Best Heavy Duty Option

4.2/5
4.6/5
4/5

Looking for a heavy-duty stand-up paddleboard that will take whatever you throw at it?

You can’t go wrong with the BOTE Rackham.

Modeled after the brand’s original Rackham fishing SUP, the inflatable BOTE Rackham is a serious rig that packs down into a bag for easy transport and storage.

Features and Benefits

Build quality

From the word go, it’s easy to tell that the Rackham is a masterpiece of a paddleboard  built to survive all manner of heavy use. 

It uses drop-stitch technology to create a virtually indestructible watercraft that can take on rocky jetties and obstacle-filled mangroves or lagoons without blinking.

The board doesn’t tear or scratch, even when dragged over a rocky beach, and isn’t easily compromised even when stored in less than perfect conditions.

Dimensions

This is where the BOTE Rackham excels, especially when compared with other boards within its class.

First, at a length of 12 feet, 4 inches, this board offers what a traditional boat offers and is nearly as stable as a kayak or canoe.

When heading into choppy waters, you shouldn’t expect to get wet, and with a few strokes, beginners will be impressed with the board’s stability.

It doesn’t wobble and offers the support you need when reeling in sizeable fish.

It’s also a lengthy one, offering more than enough space for storing your fishing accessories.

Most importantly, however, the BOTE Rackham is probably the most solid inflatable we’ve come across. BOTE pulled out all the stops, taking every opportunity to make the board rigid.

Part of this is due to the impressive seven-inch thickness, which edges it closer to a true hardboard and ensures you never get wet feet, and that it doesn’t flex even when holding a large capacity.

Comfort

A non-slip deck is a no brainer for fishing paddleboards, but the EVA padded deck on the BOTE Rackham feels pleasant under bare feet and surprisingly comfortable for a full day on the water.

Plus, the deck is grooved, so you’ll always be sure-footed even when the deck feels slippery or when you are jiggling your bait.

Features

BOTE offers several accessories for the Rackham that increase the board’s versatility and usability considerably, especially for anglers. 

First, it includes a paddle sheath for easy stowing of the paddle and rod.

The top deck also features rack mounts for attaching BOTE’s grab and bucket racs, along with tackle.

You’ll also find multiple D-rings for lashing down your cooler and other accessories. Finally, the dual bungee storage areas at both the nose and tail give you additional on-storage options.

Pros

Cons

Best Paddle Boards for Fishing Buying Guide

Best Paddle Boards for Fishing buying guide

Now that you have the opportunity to read through our reviews of all the best fishing paddleboards, you might be wondering which option is right for you.

This is why we’ve created a useful buying guide below. We want to ensure you’re 100% satisfied with your purchase decision.

Factors to Consider When Selecting the Best Paddleboards for Fishing

Paddleboard size

The first critical element to consider when purchasing a paddleboard for fishing is the size, or rather measurements, since they affect your overall fishing experience.

Length

If you plan to bring a buddy with you, the chances are you might need a SUP with a minimum length of 12 feet. 

A SUP with a larger spec. also offers more space for cargo and provides more wiggle room.

Width

The width of a SUP board determines how stable you will be on the water. 

The width of a fishing SUP is even more critical if you’ll be casting a net for a catch than if you are using it as an angler, as it’s more challenging to maintain your balance on a narrow board.

Generally, the wider the board the more stable it is, and for a fishing board, you should look for a product with a minimum width of 33 inches to ensure you stay on the top, even in rough weather conditions.

Thickness

The thickness of of the fishing paddleboard affects the overall buoyancy of your board.

When looking for an inflatable board, you want to make sure they’re at least six inches thick, which ensures plenty of rigidity and stability.

Inflatable vs. rigid

The next factor to consider when selecting a board is the right material.

Here, you have two essential options to pick from—inflatable or rigid.

Inflatable

The inflatables are filled with air, and when inflated they become rigid.

They’re not inferior to a rigid option, as their durable, military PVC-grade materials ensure they can stand up to as much popping and ripping as you can throw at them.

Rigid

Also known as hard shells, rigid SUPs are made from quality materials made to last.

Their only downside is portability, and storage is likely going to be challenging.

Weight capacity

I can’t overemphasize the importance of weight capacity on a paddleboard for fishing.

You need to have a realistic idea of the amount of weight you’re going to carry on your board.

Consider your weight, the weight of your fishing gear, and accessories and leave some capacity for holding your catch.

Of course, if you plan to bring a partner along, you’ll undoubtedly need a board with an even higher weight capacity.

Deck pad

The grip is essential when balancing on a paddleboard, especially when reeling in a big catch.

Generally, the majority of the boards feature a textured grip to prevent slippage.

The grip provided is necessary to prevent you and your gear from sliding around and possibly slipping off the board.

However, if you plan on kneeling, we recommend a board with a soft grip.

Storage space

Again, you need to consider the kind and amount of equipment you’ll bring along with you on your fishing expedition.

Some boards have bungee cords for storage in the front or rear, or both, and for fishing SUPs you would want to go with a product offering storage options at both ends for maximum storage capacity.

Paddle and rod holders

Paddle and rod holders are crucial and will keep your paddles secure and free your hands when fishing.

Price/budget

Price is going to come into play when selecting a fishing SUP.

Generally, though, SUPs are inexpensive compared to kayaks. Still, you need to pick an option that you feel comfortable spending money on.

Wrap Up: Our Choice

wrap up

Our list consists of some exciting options, each standing tall in its own right.

It’s easy to feel confused about what option to choose, but we’re here to help.

If you’re still undecided, we would recommend the Sea Eagle FishSUP.

It’s not that it’s any better than the rest, but its few improvements and features make it stand out, although by a hair, from the rest.

The Sea Eagle FishSUP’s most significant draw is its massive weight capacity. With a weight capacity of 500 pounds, this board can easily accommodate two average-sized adults comfortably.

Another plus with the board is the substantial width. WIth its 40 inches, few boards come close to it.

What does the width help with?

Well, as we’ve seen in our buying guide, a sizeable width helps with stability, a critical element for anglers, especially when casting a net or reeling in big fish.

Overall, this board has many features tailored for anglers, but then again, remember it might not always be the right option for you.

For instance, if you prioritize lightness and portability, the ISLE Sportsman would be an inspired choice, and if you’re looking for a rigid and heavy-duty option, you can’t go wrong with the BOTE Rackham.

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