Are you looking for an inflatable standup paddleboard that’s feature-rich but doesn’t cost a lot? Have you heard of Solstice’s new Bali 2.0 iSUP? No matter how good a product happens to be, there’s always room for improvement. This is why even with the successful launch of the Solstice Bali, the Solstice Bali 2.0 hit the shelves carrying with it brand-new features and improvements that weren’t available with the initial offering.
The paddleboard is a remarkable improvement of the original Soltice Bali which was released by the same company. In this new version of a classic, Swimline Corporation managed to add new features that were missing in the original – therefore ensuring that buyers will be every bit satisfied with the new model.
About Swimline Corporation
This isn’t their first time introducing a quality product in the market. Swimline Corporation started as a business dedicated to pool maintenance and accessories. Established in 1971, the company slowly expanded their products and services, turning into the industry giant it is today. Currently, the Swimline brand is well-known for their product lineup of pool toys, pool maintenance tools, and various watersports equipment, including the Solstice Bali 2.0 stand up paddle board.
A Quick Overview of the Solstice Bali 2.0 Paddle Board
The Bali 2.0 iSUP from Solstice is a versatile SUP with a weight capacity of 200 pounds. This performance inflatable standup paddleboard can be used by any rider with ease, thanks to the rounded nose, pinned tail and wide beam. Paddlers can use it in the surf as well as in flat water owing to the side thruster fins and a removable 10-inch skeg. This board can turn without difficulty and go straight just as easily.
Features of the Solstice Bali 2.0
With a price tag just a tad under $500, you would wonder if the Bali 2.0 has anything more to offer other than the plain paddleboard. You’ll be surprised when you check out its features:
In an effort to stand out among the competition, Solstice makes sure that their paddleboards provide a hard surface for the paddler to stand on. Heavy-duty DropStitch technology was utilized to make the board rigid. The Bali is stiff enough to give a positive feedback to the rider for optimum control.
Paired with the hard feel of the board is the diamond grooved, non-slip deck with integrated cushioning. That’s a combination of grip and comfort for you. Grip gives the paddler the ability to stand steadily on the board at the same time the ability to maneuver while comfort lets you stay upright on the iSUP without getting tired so quickly. Solstice found a good balance between the two.
An iSUP is supposed to be easy to stand up on and balance. The manufacturer saw to it that the Bali is stable by incorporating a round nose construction to the 5-inch core. With this, standing up the on the paddleboard and maintaining your balance should be easy – even if you’re fairly new to paddle boarding.
Steering and handling the Solstice Bali 2.0 is a breeze with its Tri-Fin construction which features a removable 10” skeg and two fixed thruster fins. Optimal tracking is achieved, giving the rider more control with less effort. Combined with the paddle that’s included in the package, you shouldn’t have any problem directing to go – whether you’re on fresh or salt water.
Bow Mount System
You can easily mount your favorite accessories to the Bali iSUP with this great feature. From your favorite action camera to your Bluetooth, waterproof speakers, you can bring your gadgets without worrying about them falling off. It also comes with a bungee storage system to tie down your dry bag or life vest. Anchor and dock this paddleboard securely with its double pad-eyes.
Apart from the Bali 2.0 inflatable standup paddleboard, your $500 gets you a carry bag, a handpump with a pressure gauge, an adjustable paddle, 5 stainless-steel D-ring tiedowns, a safety ankle leash, an inflate/deflate release valve, a comfort grip handle, and a bungee storage system. This is a great bargain from Solstice and a huge improvement over its predecessor, the Solstice Bali.
Easy to Carry and Store
Weighing in at just 27 lbs, the Bali 2.0 iSUP is easy to carry. It’s also deflates in no time, plus folding and storing in the bag are done with much ease. A complete package – the unit even comes with its own bag so you never have to worry about carrying it with you from home to water. That’s time and energy that you would rather spend on the water. The space saved for storing makes this product even more appealing.
Pros and Cons of the Solstice Bali 2.0
Now that you know all about the features of the Solstice Bali 2.0, it’s time for you to consider if it’s worth buying or not. Take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of this paddleboard:
- Low Price
It’s $500, 499.95 to be exact, according to Solstice’s website. The price is not that cheap since the lowest priced boards have an average price of 300. It’s not that expensive either as premium iSUPs can go over a thousand dollars. You could say it’s a midranger but when you think about what you get, the Bali 2.0 is a steal. Which brings us to its next strong point.
- Great Value
Have you come across an iSUP that comes with everything you need? Not all paddleboard makers give you a hand pump, carry bag, paddle, D-rings, ankle leash, and a comfortable handle. Most products require you to buy the accessories separately. It’s amazing that Solstice throws all the kit in at that price!
- Deflate Valve
Getting a pump with the package is always a welcome addition because who wants to spend half an hour inflating the paddle board? However, most manufacturers forget that spending minutes deflating the same board is just as bothersome. This is why the Solstice Bali 2.0 comes with a quick release valve that lets you completely deflate the product in just a few minutes. This way, you can pack up quickly and head back home after a satisfying day of exploring the water.
- Good Weight Capacity
This iSUP from Solstice can carry 200 pounds of weight total. Factor in its dimensions of 10’6” x 32” x 5” and you have a lot of surface real estate. What does this mean for you? You can bring your child or pet along for the ride. Alternatively, you can bring other stuff for your adventure day trip like a backpack with clothes, water or food in it. Just be sure to tie them down well and you’re good to go.
- Optimal Safety
The high-traction build of the iSUP helps improve the grip and balance of its user. In case you find yourself paddling through rougher waters, the surface of the board should provide enough friction to keep you standing and in complete control of your direction. There’s also a grip located in the middle of the board, giving you an excellent point for getting on top of the model. The location is also perfect for carrying the paddle board once it is fully inflated.
- Ideal for Beginners
One of the basic characteristics of a beginner iSUP is ease of control in any situation. The Bali 2.0 definitely checks this box. However, it’s essential for learners to practice with this board on calm water. This way, one can focus on tracking and balancing the paddleboard.
The Bali 2.0 is great for newbies but being a good all-round inflatable standup paddleboard makes it even better. Experienced paddlers can enjoy SUP yoga on this board as well as SUP surf and SUP touring.
- Low Maintenance
The product doesn’t require too much work in order to keep it in excellent shape. Just make sure to rinse it off with fresh water after every use, allow it to dry, and then use the quick-deflate valve before folding it and putting it back in its bag.
- Suggested 15 PSI Limit
You need to be extra careful when filling up this iSUP because of the recommended maximum inflation pressure. Make sure you always hit the 15 PSI mark and try not to go below or above it as this will reduce the effectiveness of the paddleboard in the water. On the bright side, the package also comes with a pressure gauge so monitoring the PSI is very easy even if you’re outdoors.
- Lower Weight Capacity
This 2.0 version of the Solstice Bali has a lower weight capacity – capable of handling 50 pounds less than the first generation at just 200 pounds.
How Does the Product Compare with Other Paddleboards?
Compared with the first-generation Solstice Bali, the 2.0 is a definite improvement. Here’s a look at the most significant comparisons between the two products:
- Product Size and Weight
The variation in the two product’s size is incredibly small with the first generation having a measurement of 10’8” by 30” by 4”. In comparison, you have the 10’6” by 32” by 5” – the Solstice Bali 2.0 obviously a tad shorter but definitely wider than the first. In terms of weight however, the Solstice Bali 2.0 definitely beats the first one at just 27 pounds while the first generation is at 34 pounds.
- Product Weight Capacity
Oddly enough, the weight capacity of the Solstice Bali 2.0 is set at just 200 pounds. In comparison, the first-generation release can take up to 250 pounds from its user.
- On Rigidity and Thickness
Once you look deeper into these two standup paddleboards, you’ll instantly see the variation in thickness. The first-generation model has a 4” core while the Solstice Bali 2.0 comes with a 5” core. This makes the Solstice Bali 2.0 much more rigid and reliable, especially with rougher waters.
- On Safety and Traction
Materials have gone a long way since the flagship model was released. The newer model comes with an integrated and diamond-grooved deck that minimizes slippage while standing up. This should be viewed in comparison with the Solstice Bali original which comes with an EVA foam traction pad. While the original provides sufficient grip and friction – there’s just something more to be said about the 2.0 version when it comes to safety.
- Accessories Attachment
One feature the Solstice Bali 2.0 comes with and not present with the flagship produce would be the attachment for accessories. With the second version of the product, you can record and share all your adventures online thanks to the convenient decks for your camera and other accessories. This way, you can record every movement and watch yourself take on the water during those sunny days.
- Paddle Inclusion
Here’s another notable difference between these two models – the Solstice Bali 2.0 comes with an adjustable paddle. This is a feature that you just can’t have with the first-generation product. With the first model, you’ll just have to buy your own paddle on top of the paddle board price. Fortunately, this isn’t a problem with the 2.0 version.
- On Overall Convenience
When it comes right down to it, both models are built for convenience from the moment you inflate it, ride it, and then deflate it again for storage. Both models come with their very own storage bags, valve, gauge, and other accessories necessary for its use.
- Water Use
Both models can be used on both freshwater and saltwater without any problem. Just make sure to rinse and dry it off before actually storing it your compartment. What’s cool about these two units is that they can both be used together with a pet! If you have a dog who happens to love the water, the Solstice Bali 2.0 would be an ideal choice for bonding with your four-legged friend.
Verdict - Final Thoughts!
So is a new version better than the old? In this case yes, the Solstice Bali 2.0 is an excellent choice for SUP enthusiasts looking for an upgrade over their current paddleboard. Offering a combination of features that focus on safety, ease of use, and convenience – it’s not surprising that the reception for this new product has been overwhelming. If you’re looking for a new addition to your water sports activities, this product might just be the perfect one to take home as a budget-friendly purchase.