The Thurso Surf Waterwalker is an iSUP for all conditions, all skill levels, and all SUP variations. One thing that has always stood out in Thurso SUPs, and in this case the Waterwalker, is the design. The colors blend so nicely, resulting in boards that are beautiful to look at. But people don’t buy paddleboards just for their beauty, do they? It can be a factor but it’s not the most important one. In this Thurso Surf Waterwalker review, we are going to take a closer look. We will see whether it is worth buying or not.
But first, who is behind Thurso paddleboards?
Shenglong You started Thurso Surf in 2017 with one thing in mind—to help people take a break from their daily routines. He believes in finding peace within yourself. According to him, paddleboarding is a fantastic way to do that. But for more people to achieve this, he knew that they needed quality SUPs at affordable prices. The company uses modern technology like structural analysis and fluid dynamics to ensure that you get the best at friendly prices.
Before we delve deeper, check out the pros, cons, and board specs of the Thurso Waterwalker.
- Advanced military-grade construction, theoretically indestructible
- Premium accessories, carbon shaft paddle, roller backpack
- Sleek, gorgeous design
- Quick-lock removable fins
- Different size options
- Manual inflation is not easy
Paddle Board Specs
- Length: 10’/10’6/11’
- Width: 30”/31”/32”
- Thickness: 6”
- Weight: 25 lbs/28 lbs/30 lbs
- Weight capacity: 260 lbs/300 lbs/330 lbs
Who Should Buy The Thurso Waterwalker?
The Thurso Surf Waterwalker is ideal for beginners, young/smaller paddlers, families, and any avid paddler looking for a secondary SUP.
The 10’ and 10’6 Waterwalker boards would be especially great if you are on the smaller side. Wide and long SUPs are a pain to handle for many smaller paddlers. You don’t need the extra length, more so if speed is not important to you. This also applies to younger paddlers. For parents who are trying to introduce their children to SUP, this would be perfect. You want something that they’ll continue to use even when they’re grown.
Stability is a priority for any SUP beginner. Learning to stand up paddle can be hard. You don’t need to make it harder by using a tippy paddleboard. Depending on your size and how much stability you want, you can choose any one of the three Waterwalker SUPs.
The inflatable paddleboard is also high quality and comes with well-made accessories. You don’t need to buy anything else to go SUPing—except a life jacket.
If you are a family of SUPers, it is wise to get a board that anyone can use, such as the Waterwalker. And sometimes, you’ll want to paddle with a child or dog on board. The 11’ Waterwalker is wider and longer with a higher weight limit. It would make a great family SUP.
For the avid paddlers who own a solid SUP, racing board, or any other paddleboard that can’t be used in every situation, the Waterwalker would be nice. You can go with it anywhere and be as adventurous as you like. It is portable and extremely durable. You won’t have to worry about dents, regardless of the condition.
All of the three Waterwalker SUPs are stable—but it depends on your size. Smaller paddlers will be comfortable in any one of them. Bigger paddlers are better off with the 11’ board.
The paddleboards measure 10’ x 30”, 10’6 x 31” and 11’ x 32”. The bigger the platform, the more stable you can expect the paddleboard to be, especially for heavier people. This is also the case for activities that require more stability. For instance, if you will be doing SUP yoga, you should go for the 11’ Waterwalker.
Another thing that affects an inflatable paddleboard’s stability is the construction. When an iSUP is poorly made, it is likely to flex and become wobbly. This gets worse as you push towards the weight limit*. Thankfully, the Thurso Waterwalker paddleboards are made using state-of-the-art technology. They are impressively solid and sturdy. When fully inflated, you can easily mistake it for an epoxy SUP.
The Waterwalker doesn’t have a pointy nose. This means that when you have a child or dog on board, the stability won’t be affected. It doesn’t help that kids can be restless sometimes. So the all-around shape at the front ensures stability even when they won’t sit still.
I love that Thurso Surf made different sizes of the Waterwalker. Now paddlers can choose the one that is best for their size.
A paddleboard’s maneuverability largely depends on the length. Shorter boards are easier to handle and are perfect for making quick, sharp turns. The 10’ Waterwalker is, thus, the most maneuverable of them all. It is suitable for short SUPers who may not be comfortable handling a longer board. The other two are quite maneuverable as well. They are responsive and you won’t have a hard time making rapid turns.
The Thurso Surf Waterwalker tracks remarkably—that is, it maintains a straight line.
In SUP, you can paddle on one side several times before switching and the board will still follow a straight path. However, if the paddleboard tracks poorly, you may have to switch sides more times than necessary, causing you to get tired quickly.
The Waterwalker comes with three fins that help with this. They are removable and you can change the configuration depending on where you’ll be paddling. For instance, if you are going to SUP leisurely in flatwater, the center fin alone will be enough to help with tracking.
The Waterwalker glides with decent speed.
The longer Waterwalker SUP (11’) will probably be faster than the others. But they are narrower and have less resistance so the speed difference is not that big.
For cruising leisurely, paddling around with friends and family, or angling, you will love the speed of the Waterwalker. You will only be disappointed if you get into a race with people who have long, narrow racing SUPs. All-around paddleboards are not designed for speed.
The finishing allows the SUP to move smoothly on the water, making for a thrilling ride.
The Thurso Waterwalker features a Dropstitch core and double layer PVC construction. The deck and sides have triple/quad military-strength PVC coatings. On top of that, the top and bottom are reinforced using PVC seams to prevent delamination. The rails are reinforced with carbon for added rigidity.
First, this construction makes the Waterwalker exceptionally durable. Paddlers are adventurous people. You will eventually get tired of SUPing in the same area and you’ll want to explore other places. And wouldn’t it be amazing to have a paddleboard that can handle anything? You never know what to expect, so a rugged board is a good idea.
A Thurso iSUP can survive conditions that a solid SUP would never. It won’t get dinged when you bump into a rock or when you accidentally drop it. Feel free to go paddleboarding anywhere you like.
Secondly, the Waterwalker doesn’t flex. Some inflatable SUPs appear stiff until you get on them. They start to bend, mainly in the middle. This mostly happens when the paddler is heavier (you don’t even have to exceed the weight limit). It is one of the reasons why some SUPers are still not convinced about inflatable paddleboards.
The Waterwalker’s construction, however, is reliable. You can support both ends with chairs and stand on it—you won’t notice any bending at all. The additional PVC layers make it as stiff as the traditional paddleboards.
This iSUP is six inches thick. Unlike thinner inflatable paddleboards, it has a higher volume, is more rigid, and can handle more weight.
The Thurso Waterwalker all-around paddleboards look amazing. Instead of using colors that are way too bright or dull designs, the Thurso boards artwork is inspired by nature.
Part of the board looks like it is made from wood—they scanned the graphic from real wood– giving the SUP a polished and appealing appearance. The other colors on the SUPs are also inspired by natural elements.
This board has a hybrid shape. It is a combination of the typical touring SUP shape and the all-around paddleboard shape. As a result, the Waterwalker can perform exceptionally in every category and condition. It is suitable for rivers, calm lakes, and the open ocean. It is fast, stable, and fun.
The paddleboard has a GoPro mount too. It is located at the nose to help you capture all the awesome moments.
The Thurso Waterwalker comes with three fins: a central fin and two side fins. The center fin is large and facilitates tracking.
All the fins are removable and you don’t require any tools. Most iSUPs do not offer the option of removing the side fins. While it’s not a big deal, it is good to be able to change your fin setup whenever you like. You don’t always have to use the three-fin system.
Besides, you will love how neatly the paddleboard folds when all the fins have been removed.
The fins help with maneuverability, stability, and tracking.
2. Deck Pad
The Waterwalker has a textured deck pad that keeps you comfortable and prevents you from slipping. It is not a full-length pad but it covers where you’ll be standing or kneeling.
There are three grab handles: at the nose, tail, and center. The ones at the nose and tail come in handy when you want to drag the SUP or when two people are carrying it. The center one is for solo carrying. And it lets beginners know where to stand when they are learning to paddleboard.
The Waterwalker has about 15 D-rings. 10 of them have bungee storage cords attached: six at the front and four at the back. The rest of the D-rings can be used to attach a kayak seat. There is a paddle holder for when you want to free your hands.
SUP Board Accessories
The Thurso Surf Waterwalker SUP package includes a bag, pump, paddle, and leash.
a. The Paddle
It has a carbon shaft which makes it much lighter than fiberglass and aluminum paddles. The Waterwalker paddle only weighs 33 ounces. A light paddle allows you to paddle faster for longer. And you also make efficient strokes so you don’t waste a lot of energy. It floats too.
The paddle has a new locking shaft mechanism. You can quickly convert it to a kayak paddle using an extra blade (sold separately).
b. The Pump
The new Chimera dual-chamber, triple-action manual pump inflates your paddleboard 100% faster. You can use it to both deflate and inflate. It has three action modes for different pressures.
c. The Bag
The Thurso roller backpack has a premium nylon outer shell that won’t get damaged by sand, salty water, or even sunlight. The back, waist straps, and shoulder straps are padded to ensure that the weight is distributed evenly. This and the rugged wheels make it easy for people who have to hike to the water.
What Users Are Saying
Someone on Reddit wanted to get two boards: one for himself and another one for his wife. He had narrowed down to several options and wanted to know what other paddlers had to say.
A Redditor replied, praising the Thurso Surf iSUP. He says that it will work in the conditions that the original poster highlighted. He goes on to say that it is an awesome board for the price. He highly suggests it.
In a different Reddit post, a user was wondering what to get between the Waterwalker and another paddleboard.
Hawkweasel replied that he recently got his Waterwalker 11’. While the conditions could not allow him to go SUPing at the time, he was impressed by the quality. He noticed how light the carbon paddle is. At first, he was torn between the Thurso and an iRocker. He chose to go with the Waterwalker because it is more stunning.
Vicky had been using solid paddleboards for a long time. Then she decided to try iSUPs, and the Waterwalker was her first choice. According to her, she has never had so much fun on a traditional paddle board. The Waterwalker is responsive and the deck pad offers amazing comfort and traction. It is not as hard to inflate as she expected. The board is unbelievably rugged and stiff—her friends couldn’t believe it was an inflatable.
Joe’s iSUP had gotten old and he was looking to upgrade. He wasn’t sure about the Thurso Waterwalker but he chose to go for it anyway. He says he couldn’t be happier. Inflation is quick and the paddleboard is remarkably stable. His only complaint is that he didn’t get an instructional manual.
Morris starts by complementing the Thurso customer care. They listen, answer questions, and solve customer issues promptly. He says that the paddle is very light and fun to use. He also comments about the traction pad, describing it as “grippy”.
Karen wanted something that everyone in the family could use. The family consists of people of all sizes. She settled on the Waterwalker 11’. The stiffness was surprising, to her and her friends with solid paddleboards. The board handles well even in choppy water. She was a little scared, being a beginner, but she had lots of fun. SUP has become her new hobby.
Thurso Waterwalker Alternatives
Thurso Waterwalker Vs Atoll 11’
The Atoll inflatable paddleboard is another great iSUP. It is made using laminated dual-layer PVC and Korean Dropstitch technology. The construction makes it incredibly tough. It holds up to 700 pounds and it is virtually indestructible. You can run it over with a car and it will still be as good as new. Despite being this tough, it only weighs 21 pounds.
The SUP comes with a paddle, bag, leash, and pump. The Atoll paddle has a carbon fiberglass shaft and a nylon blade. The bag is newly redesigned and made using heavy-duty materials.
Both the Atoll 11’ and the Waterwalker have a beautiful appearance. They are made using impeccable construction and are among the most durable iSUPs around. The manufacturers of the two paddleboards offer a two-year warranty. The included accessories are high-quality.
While the longest Waterwalker can only handle 330 pounds, the Atoll will hold more than double that weight. It is lighter too.
You get a universal fin box with the Atoll, so you won’t have a problem finding a replacement fin.
The Atoll 11’ only has two grab handles whereas the Waterwalker has three. You can also remove all of the three fins on the Thurso boards, an option you won’t have with the Atoll.
Other than these few differences, the two inflatable paddleboards are outstanding. You can’t go wrong with either one of them.
Thurso Waterwalker Vs iRocker All Around 11
The iRocker 11 offers a wide range of options as far as colors are concerned. You can choose from six colors—some muted, some bright.
The paddleboard is made using triple-layer composite PVC. This construction makes it rugged and lightweight. The iRocker All Around comes with all the accessories you will need and all of them are well-made. There is a carbon blend paddle, wheel-compatible backpack, twin-chamber hand pump, and a 10-foot leash. It has 20 D-rings and four action mounts to allow for customization.
The Thurso Waterwalker and the iRocker All Around have many similarities. They both have three grab handles and all removable fins. The iRocker comes with a two-year warranty, just like the Waterwalker. They have front and back bungee storage areas too.
The iRocker 11 has four action mounts and four safety handles for a child to hold. Thurso SUPs don’t have these. The deck pad on the iRocker is larger than what you get on the Thurso Waterwalker. Additionally, the iRocker has a much higher weight capacity (435 pounds), compared to the Waterwalker (260, 300, 330 pounds).
The Waterwalker has a more appealing design though. Its shape and colors look much better. The Thurso comes with a paddle holder, a feature that is not available on the iRocker.
Thurso Waterwalker Vs iRocker Cruiser
The iRocker Cruiser, like the iRocker All Around, offers you six color options. It is made using triple-layer composite PVC and weighs 25 pounds. The Cruiser can hold up to 400 pounds. It comes with high-quality accessories and lots of attachment points.
Compared to the Thurso Waterwalker boards, the Cruiser will probably be slower than the 10’6 and the 11’. They are narrower and move with less resistance in the water. However, the Cruiser is more stable because it is wider. The stability difference is not noticeable, especially with the larger Waterwalker.
The Thurso SUPs and the iRocker Cruiser have removable fins and three grab handles.
With the Cruiser, you get action mounts for fishing rod holders, cameras, and other gear. The Waterwalker only has a GoPro mount. But it comes with a paddle holder too which you don’t get with the Cruiser.
These two paddleboards have minor design differences. They are both made using reliable construction and come with premium accessories. I would recommend any of them.
Thurso Waterwalker Vs Nixy Newport
The Nixy Newport is quite rigid and can be inflated to 20 PSI. It is designed in California and constructed using advanced dual-layer fusion technology. It weighs 23 pounds only but its toughness is impressive. The package includes a paddle, leash, shoulder strap, backpack, and pump.
Its backpack is made using heavy-duty nylon and it comes with wheels for ease of transport. It has cargo hooks and extra padding. The paddle has a fiberglass shaft and a nylon blade. It weighs 16 ounces.
Both the Thurso Waterwalker and the Nixy Newport have three grab handles and three removable fins. They have two bungee storage areas and additional D-rings for kayak seat attachment.
The 10’6 and 11’ Waterwalker boards are more likely to be faster than the Nixy because they are narrower. Being wide, the Nixy Newport may be slightly more stable than the Thurso SUPs.
The Newport offers color options and is lighter than all the Waterwalker boards, even the smallest one. It can hold more weight than the Thurso SUPs too.
I’d say the Nixy Newport and the Thurso Waterwalker are high-quality paddleboards. None is better than the other—it is a matter of personal preference.
The Thurso Surf Waterwalker is arguably one of the best all-around paddleboards. It is constructed using military-grade materials and advanced technology. You can have carefree fun without worrying about dings and dents. The iSUP comes with premium accessories that will last just as long. It performs well in every condition and anyone can use it for any SUP-related activity. On top of that, it features a gorgeous design that will stand out wherever you go.
Do you have a question about the Thurso Waterwalker? Ask us below. Happy paddling!