This is a review of the Bote Rackham Aero inflatable paddle board.
Many anglers will tell you that nobody does it like Bote. Their fishing SUPs are some of the most remarkable ones I’ve ever seen. Every detail seems to have been carefully thought out and the quality is hard to beat. The Bote Rackham Aero is a fishing machine, full of features that would impress any angler. I’m excited to talk all about it in this review.
The first thing you’ll notice once you get onto the Rackham Aero is how stable it is. Whether you’re looking to catch some big fish or you’re new at SUP, you’ll have nothing to worry about. The Bote Rackham isn’t tippy and it’s extremely hard to make it flip.
It comes in two sizes; the smaller one is 36 inches wide while the bigger one is 38 inches wide. With such a wide platform and a recessed deck, the stability is incredible.
The other thing that I have to mention is the number of accessory mounting points. Just because you’re using a paddle board doesn’t mean that you can’t bring all the gear you want.
The Bote Rackham Aero comes with tie-down points, Rac receivers, bungee storage, sand spear straps, D-rings, and so much more. You have more than enough attachment points for all your fishing and expedition adventures.
The Bote Rackham Aero sounds like the best inflatable fishing paddle board out there. It has been described as the “most feature-rich platform”. But is it the right fishing board for you? Here is everything you need to know about the Rackham Aero before you buy it.
Pros and Cons of the Bote Rackham Aero Inflatable SUP
Paddle Board Specs
- Length: 11’/12’4
- Width: 36”/38”
- Thickness: 7”
- Weight: 36 lbs/45 lbs
- Weight capacity: 300 lbs/400 lbs
Who Is the Bote Rackham Aero Inflatable Board Best for?
The Bote Rackham Aero inflatable SUP is designed for anglers of all sizes and skill levels.
There are two main things that every fishing paddle board needs to have: stability and gear attachment points.
The smaller Rackham Aero is 11’ long and 36” wide while the bigger one is 12’4 long and 38” wide. If you’re a fisherman, you’ll have a large platform that offers incredible stability for all your fishing adventures.
Fishing from a paddle board can be tricky and many seasoned paddlers will tell you to be prepared to take a swim several times. And they won’t be wrong. But this Bote board is really wide with a recessed deck–factors that contribute to its stability. Anglers can fish comfortably without ending up in the water, even beginner fishermen.
The other factor that makes this an excellent fishing board is the abundance of gear mounting points. They allow anglers to attach all kinds of fishing accessories including a cooler, tackle rack, sand spear, and more. You can have your ideal fishing setup with the Rackham Aero.
How does the Rackham Aero Inflatable Paddle Board Perform?
So, how does the Bote Rackham Aero perform on the water? How does it’s design impact it’s handling – and what should potential buyers be aware of?
I’ll break down this board’s performance, and take a closer look at each of its features and the benefits they bring.
Large, Stable Platform
The Bote Rackham is unbelievably stable, which is exactly what you need for paddle board fishing.
Maintaining balance on a SUP board isn’t as easy as it looks, especially for beginners. Add to that all the movement involved in fishing and you can barely stay upright. This is why a fishing SUP has to be stable and I can confidently say that the Rackham Aero is one of the most stable boards you can find.
The large platform ensures unmatched stability. It doesn’t feel wobbly, even when casting or fighting fish, which is awesome.
In addition to the wide platform, the Rackham Aero has a recessed deck. It lowers your center of gravity and enhances stability. Even though you’ve never SUPed before, you won’t have a problem with this SUP board.
The quality of construction also contributes to the stability of the Rackham Aero. I have paddled inflatable SUPs that bend in the middle because they are not rigid enough. They tend to be wobbly and unstable. This isn’t an issue with the Bote Rackham. When fully inflated it will easily hold you plus all your gear without losing stiffness.
Easy to Handle
Even the most stable SUP won’t be a good fishing board if you can’t control it on the water.
Fortunately, this isn’t a problem with the Bote Rackham Aero fishing board. It is easy to paddle and turn in most water conditions, despite its size. Big paddle boards can be a pain to maneuver, especially if you’re on the smaller side; but the Rackham is amazing.
The 11’ Rackham is slightly more maneuverable compared to the 12’4 one, which is expected. It is best for petite anglers.
Tracking is a paddle board’s ability to remain in a straight line, without snaking all over the place. Tracking is, essentially, how well a board travels in a straight line through the water
While your paddling technique also has a role to play in this, the Bote Rackham won’t give you any trouble. It has three fins that prevent it from veering off the path every time you make a paddle stroke.
One downside of fishing paddle boards is speed. They aren’t the fastest and the Rackham inflatable is no different.
At 36 and 38 inches wide, these Bote boards face more resistance which hinders speed. So they’re definitely not racing paddle boards. However, both SUPs glide well with decent speed and you won’t have a reason to complain.
Besides, you can always mount a trolling motor for even better speed.
Quality construction is non-negotiable when it comes to fishing SUPs. You want a paddle board that can handle all your gear and holds up well even when you accidentally hit obstacles.
The Bote Rackham Aero is built using Bote’s Aero technology. The board has a dropstitch core and a layer(s) of military-grade PVC material.
The smaller Rackham features AeroUltra technology which uses a single layer. It makes the paddle board lighter without compromising its quality. The 11-foot SUP weighs 36 pounds and can support up to 300 pounds.
The 12’4 Rackham is made using AeroBote technology which uses two layers. This results in a virtually indestructible fishing SUP that will last for years. The paddle board weighs 45 pounds and can hold up to 400 pounds.
The two boards can’t exactly be described as “lightweight” but they are SUP carry system-compatible so you can use a SUP carry strap.
Both inflatable paddle boards have a two-year warranty.
This quality construction allows you to go on adventures and have carefree fun. Unlike solid boards, you won’t be stressed every time you hit an obstacle thinking you’ve damaged your SUP.
You can also bring all the gear you need, even for long fishing and expedition adventures. The Bote Rackham Aero will hold you without sinking or flexing. It is super stiff when fully inflated and you might mistake it for a hard board. If you’re a bigger paddler or you have a lot of gear I’d recommend the larger capacity board with a 400-pound limit.
The smaller Bote Rackham is available in three colors or style options: Classic Cypress, Full Trax Jade, and No Quarter (a limited edition). The longer one is available in four style options: Bug Slinger Redfish, Classic Teak, Full Trax Citron, and Verge Camo.
Each of these designs looks nice and stylish.
All the boards have a recessed deck–a unique feature that helps with stability.
Bote Rackham Aero Inflatable SUP Features
Here is a closer look at some of the standout features of the Bote Rackham Aero, the added benefits they provide, and what you can expect from this board.
Like most fishing inflatable paddle boards, the Rackham Aero comes with three fins–one large removable center fin and two side fins.
These fins play a key role in performance as they make the SUP more maneuverable and super stable. More importantly, they keep the tail in place when the blade pushes back water during a paddle stroke. Without the fins, the tail can easily be pushed to the side causing the board to change direction.
Soft Textured Deck Pad
The Bote Rackham deck pad is heat-sealed and you can tell that it isn’t the kind of cheap deck pad you find on some SUPs. It doesn’t start coming apart after a few uses.
The BVA foam deck pad feels nice and soft under your feet–comfortable enough to stand on for hours while fishing. It is designed to shed water and provide traction so you don’t slip when the board is wet.
Multiple Grab Handles
The grab handles are newly redesigned and strategically placed, to make carrying your Bote paddle board easier. No more numb fingers when you’re carrying the SUP solo or with a buddy.
The handles also come in handy when you have to drag the paddle board into or out of the water.
D-Rings and Attachment Points
The Bote Rackham Aero really shines in this area. It has features that you would expect on a fishing SUP and others that are just unique and awesome.
The inflatable paddle board has front and rear bungees for quick and easy storage. It also has Rac receivers which are compatible with the Bote fishing tackle rack.
Other gear attachment points include velcro straps, paddle sheath, sand spear sheath, sand spear straps, and additional D-rings.
There is also a Power-Pole Micro mounting point. The Power-Pole Micro is a battery-operated command center that provides power for fish finders and other SUP fishing gadgets.
Lastly, the Bote Rackham comes with a Magnepod–a cool feature for storing your Bote magnetic accessories.
Paddle Board Accessories: What Is Included in the Bote Rackham iSUP Package?
What do you get when you buy the Bote Rackham Aero? The package includes:
- Inflatable SUP
- Hand pump
- Rolling travel bag
- Adjustable paddle
- Repair kit
- Removable sand spear sheath
- Removable paddle sheath
- Slide-in Rac receivers
All these accessories are high-quality and will easily fit in the SUP storage bag. The loaded bag weight is about 70 pounds.
Optional Rackham Aero Accessories
Other than the above accessories, Bote has additional options that are sold separately. They offer convenience and make your fishing expeditions safer and more fun.
- Coiled leash
- Aero SUP paddle seat
- Travelink SUP carry system
- Sand spear
- Wheel Rac (SUP cart)
- Kula cooler
- Aero electric pump
- Bote belt PFD
- Tackle Rac
- Bucket Rac
What Paddlers Are Saying About the Bote Rackham Aero Paddle Board
Personally, I’d say the Bote Rackham Aero is one of the best fishing paddle boards you can buy. But would other anglers agree?
Let’s see what people who have used the SUP have to say.
This Redditor was torn between the Rackham Aero and the Blackfin Model XL, both amazing SUPs. He wanted a paddle board that would be good for exercise and fly fishing.
Someone replies saying that he would choose the Bote because of their customer service, warranty period, and the fact that they use a standard fin box.
Another paddler recommends Bote. He has the Rackham Aero and it feels pretty solid, despite him being on the bigger side. He uses it for fly fishing and he loves it.
Bill always struggled with stability with other paddle boards. As a tall guy, most of the SUPs he tried just weren’t stable. He finally got himself a Bote Rackham Aero and he couldn’t be happier. It is stable even in waves.
Emily says that the Rackham Aero inflatable SUP is no small board and you should be prepared to carry it. She also says that sometimes it holds water in the middle. Other than that, Emily says the board is awesome. It fits all her gear and even an additional passenger.
From the quality construction to the accessory attachment points on the deck – not to mention the general design– you can tell that a lot went into making this SUP.
It’s large and well-made, factors which definitely contribute to its unmatched stability. You can bring all your gear and even a pet and the board will hold up well, without flexing or tipping. What’s more, it comes in two sizes for you to choose from depending on your build and your lifestyle.
If you are looking for a quality fishing SUP or a paddle board that can hold a lot of gear, check out the Rackham Aero. It might just be perfect for you.