As much as we love the great outdoors, our number one priority is always safety. Keeping our team safe, keeping you safe, and providing the world with the safest and best products we can possibly produce. For most members of the stand-up paddle board (SUP) community, paddling is a year-round activity. Therefore, an important part of our mission is to keep everyone safe all year long, even during the coldest and harshest winters. Of course, in order to safely paddle throughout all four seasons, one must have the proper equipment, accessories, etc. So, with all of that in mind, what are the best SUP accessories for winter paddle boarding?
Dress in Warm, Waterproof Layers
First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure that you dress in warm, waterproof layers. Getting wet in the midst of winter, especially unexpectedly, can immediately put one’s health and safety at risk. Therefore, please be sure to dress in warm, waterproof layers which will keep you safe both in and out of the water. We recommend a wet or dry suit (your choice) as well as waterproof gloves, socks, shoes, etc. We also advise all of our customers to bring a waterproof light that will increase your visibility as well as your range of vision. Trust us, it’s better to have more than enough safety equipment versus not enough.
Stay Connected to Your SUP with a Leash
In addition to a bright, waterproof light, our team of SUP professionals at Atoll Boards recommends all paddle boarders should have the following items with them at all times: a leash, a dry bag, and a personal floatation device. The leash, for starters, will keep you connected to your board at all times, even if you fall off. This can be invaluable during the coldest times of the year. For this, we recommend our Atoll 10-Foot Coil Paddle Board Leash.
Keep Your Valuables in a Dry Bag
Next, a dry bag can make a world of difference. If you fall into the water, and you weren’t ready for it—and you have your phone on you—this can spell disaster. In addition to risking hypothermia and similar conditions, you also run the risk of killing your phone and any other important electronics on your person. If, however, you stow all of these items in a dry bag—such as our Atoll Overkill Dry Bag Waist Pouch Fanny Pack—then they should all remain dry, even if you don’t.
Wear a Personal Floatation Device (PFD)
Last but certainly not least, you don’t want to be in watery waters without a PFD. It only takes a few seconds for things like shock, incapaction, and hypothermia to set in. With that in mind, when every second matters, you don’t want to be in a position where you can’t get yourself back on your board. That’s where a PFD comes in. With an Onyx M-16 Inflatable Belt Pack or any other PFD, you can quickly get back on your board, especially if a leash is keeping you close to your SUP. When every second matters, proper preparations can make a world of difference. Please stay safe out there, and make sure you have everything you need before you leave the shore.
In summary, if you ask our team at Atoll Boards, we would say that a leash, dry bag, and PFD are the best SUP accessories for winter paddle boarding; and the most important ones, too! To learn more about the best ways to stay safe on your SUP all year long, please feel free to contact our team at any time. We are always more than happy to help in any way we can. We hope to serve you sometime soon!