People warmed up to the idea of inflatable stand up paddleboards mainly because of the price. Hard paddleboards are expensive and many paddlers opted to rent them.
However, since the coming of inflatable boards, life has been easier for SUPers. They are very affordable and most of them come with the necessary accessories like paddles and pumps.
You cannot talk about cheap inflatable SUP board brands without mentioning Pathfinder. The Pathfinder inflatable paddle board is a well-known and well-liked cheap SUP board, with tons of positive ratings to prove it.
The Pathfinder iSUP 9’9” is an amazing product—if the reviews are anything to go by. However, although customer reviews say a lot about a product, they might not really convince you to buy it. What works for one paddler might not work for you.
So what is it about the Pathfinder inflatable SUP? Why do other riders like it? Will you like it? This review is tailored for you, to answer all your questions, and then some. Everything you need or want to know, you will find here.
Quick Summary of Features and Specifications
Made of strong PVC material and multi-layer Dropstitch construction
Large EVA traction pad
Features a D-ring for attaching a leash
Bungee cords for fastening cargo
Comes with a paddle, removable center fin, pump, bag and valve wrench
Length of the paddle is adjustable
Comes in two colors: blue and orange
Maximum pressure is 15 PSI
Measures 9’9” x 30” x 5”
Maximum weight: 240 lbs
Weighs 35 lbs
A Closer Look at The Features and Specifications
The Pathfinder SUP is made of strong PVC material, reinforced with a multi-layer Dropstitch construction. All the quality iSUPs in the industry are made of this outstanding technology. The material is among the toughest and there is very little you can do to dent the iSUP. Coupled with the Dropstitch construction, the result is a virtually indestructible SUP for all your adventures. Whatever the conditions are, you can always count on your Pathfinder to hold together and come out of it completely unscathed.
The measurements of this iSUP make it suitable for SUPers of all skill levels and for different SUP variations. It is 9’9″ long, a length that does not hinder it from being fast so you can use it for touring and light racing events. The width, 30″, offers enough deck space for moving around when doing SUP yoga or SUP fishing. If you want to bring your kid or dog along, space will not be a problem. As for the 5″ thickness, it makes the board more buoyant and prevents it from bending in the middle or submerging into the water.
It features a large traction pad. It spreads to most of the area that you are likely to cover when you are out on the water. This pad makes the Pathfinder the perfect board if you are the kind of paddler that loves to stay long out in the water. At the end of your adventure, you will still be able to feel your feet or knees. The pad, just like a yoga mat, gives you a comfortable platform to practice SUP yoga. If you are a beginner, this EVA pad is non-slip to protect you from losing your foothold when the deck is wet.
The deck has five stainless steel D-rings. One of them is located at the tail for attaching your leash. The other four are placed at the front and have a bungee cord strapped on them for storage. This storage system ensures that your cargo is safe and does not fall into the water. Instead of paddling with a backpack on your back, this bungee cord lets you SUP freely with no extra weight on your shoulders.
The package includes a paddle, removable center fin, manual pump, bag and valve wrench. The paddle is adjustable and made of aluminum. Anyone in the family can use it regardless of their height. Instead of buying a board and several paddles, just buy the Pathfinder. The large center fin helps your board to cut through water and it is detachable so you can remove it when it is not needed. The bag looks really sleek and has shoulder straps for easy carrying.
The Pathfinder is lightweight and features a center carry handle. These two features make carrying of this board very easy. Whether it is deflated and in the bag or fully inflated and you are carrying it across the beach, this iSUP will not wear you out. The center carry handle is very convenient. Make no mistake; the lightweight feature does not interfere with its performance at all. It is still very steady in the water.
Why You Should Buy The Pathfinder Inflatable Paddle Board
The Pathfinder comes with a great package. The complete SUP package can cost you a significant amount of money if you buy everything separately – not to mention the time you will spend looking for each of them. The manufacturers of this iSUP understand the struggle and have chosen to take the load off your shoulder by including most of the accessories in the package. Everything you need to go paddling (except a leash) is included. This should convince you to get the board.
The measurements of the Pathfinder provide for awesome speed, stability, and maneuverability. It is not too narrow that a beginner will find it hard to stay on board, neither is it too wide that it hinders speed. It is somewhere in the middle.
The Pathfinder is very strong and durable. Every consumer wants to be sure that what they are buying will last long and, at least, be worth the money spent. You have that assurance with this iSUP. The PVC material is really tough. Add to that the Dropstitch construction and the durability is incomparable. Unlike traditional hard boards, this inflatable SUP can stand a lot of conditions. There is no need to be too careful with it – it is not prone to dents and dings.
The provided backpack is spacious and of great quality. The paddleboard and every other thing you will need can fit easily fit into this bag – even the paddle and the pump. The shoulder straps are strong and padded for comfort. If you want to walk to your paddling spot, the bag will come in handy.
The Pathfinder is the perfect family board. Different members of the family might be into different SUP variations. The best way to make everyone happy is to buy a board that can be used for anything. Even better, it comes with an adjustable paddle.
It does not come with a leash. It looks like the manufacturers got everything else right. Therefore one would wonder why they did not include a leash in the package. You have to go buy one for yourself. Anyway, they tried and at least they have included most accessories. Besides, a leash does not cost much, so do not let this be a deal breaker.
The paddle is made of aluminum. A paddle made of carbon is known to be lighter and floats on water. It does not leave your arm fatigued and if it falls you can find it effortlessly. The same cannot be said of the provided aluminum paddle. However, considering it is included as a bonus in the package, it would be unfair to complain.
The maximum weight limit might be a little too low. It will be difficult for two adults to be on board at the same time, or a heavier person with a kid or dog. This might be limiting for a paddler who wants to paddle with someone else on board.
In case you’re searching for a higher-end paddle board, with a larger weight capacity, have a look at my 15 best iSUP reviews.
What Users Are Saying About The Pathfinder SUP Board
There is no shortage of reviews for the Pathfinder on online platforms.
Considering the price of this board, users could not be happier. According to them, there is nothing not to love. First of all, they appreciate the accessories in the package as they are all well-made. The pump works well and is very efficient in inflating the iSUP to maximum PSI (it takes about 5 minutes). The board itself is super tough and rigid when fully inflated. The stability is commendable and has been mentioned quite a number of times. It knifes very smoothly through the water and has great speed. Its durability has been proven by paddlers who have had it for several years now.
The Pathfinder 9’9″ inflatable SUP is a good board – no doubt. Evidently, it was made with paddlers in mind.
The manufacturers used the best inflatable paddleboard material and state-of-the-art material for unmatched durability. The all-inclusive package is really attractive, especially for the price. The measurements are suitable for all paddlers and all water conditions.
The Pathfinder paddle board is an investment worth making.