When we were working on our recent blog about planning the perfect winter SUP holiday, we were surprised (shocked!) to find out how many of our fans don’t actually take their paddle boards on holiday. If you’re one of our fans who keeps your board at home when you travel, read on for our simple tips for how to pack and store an inflatable stand up paddle board.
Before You Go
Whether you’re planning a winter SUP holiday or a winter break from your board, you do not want to stuff a dirty board into a pack or a corner. Sand, salt and debris on your board can damage even the tough materials we use, especially over time.
We repeat: do NOT pack away a dirty board!
Besides, spending some quality time giving your board and accessories is a great way to give your equipment a good check.
Follow this guide for cleaning your board:
- Hose everything off for several minutes with fresh running water. The more water, the better. You don’t want one grain of sand sticking to your board when you get down to step 2.
- Once all the sand, salt, twigs and dust are off your board, it’s time to get scrubby with it. For this step, be sure to use environmentally friendly soap that bubbles but doesn’t scratch. You also want to use a good quality soft cloth like this one.
- When everything is good and sudsy, it’s time to give it all a thorough rinse. Repeat. Repeat again. You don’t want any soap left sticking to your board.
- Once you’ve completely washed away all the suds, you’ll want to use another soft cloth to get everything really dry. Don’t take shortcuts here — moisture can lead to mildew if you pack up wet parts. If you’re lucky enough to be cleaning your paddle board on a sunny day, you can let the sun help you out with this step.
Idea: Since you’re getting up close and personal with your paddle board and parts, this is a great time to conduct an equipment check for signs of wear, needed tightening or even a wish list for next year’s holiday shopping.
Get the Job Done Right
Once every square inch of your paddle board and all the parts are clean, dry and checked, you’re ready to get down to deflating your board. Be patient with this step. Of course, the right pump helps make this step simple.
For speed and ease, nothing beats our Electric SUP Pump. It’s fast and easy on your arms. Just hook it up and wait it out. Your board will be fully deflated in a few minutes.
If you don’t have an electric pump, no worries. You can still get the job done right with our Full Throttle HP6 Hand Pump or Dual Action Hand Pump. Plus, you’ll get a bit of an upper body workout.
Once your paddle board is fully deflated and all the air is out, it’s time to break down your paddle, pull off your accessories and get everything packed up in a proper paddle board pack, with an emphasis on proper. You definitely do not want to try to pack your paddle board into a gym duffel! You wouldn’t eat poutine with a candy bar, would you? It’s like that.
You have two choices in picking the perfect stand up paddle board bag: the back pack style and the roller pack style. Both are great but depending on your plans — store your board for the winter or take your board on a dreamy getaway — one might better suit your needs.
For storing your paddle board over the winter, the iROCKER Back Pack will do the trick. It comes included with several iROCKER board packages and has all the compartments and padding you need to store and carry your board safely.
If winter temps have you longing for a sunny getaway, then the Rolling Travel Back Pack is the better way to go. This is because in addition to having all the compartments and space you need to travel with your board, it also has cinching straps to keep everything snug and wheels to make walking through the airport easy.
Tip: If you’re planning to store your equipment away for the winter, pick a clean, dry spot out of harsh sunlight and never store anything else on top.
Make Plans for the Winter
Speaking of wheels and winter, isn’t it time to plan that balmy winter getaway? Tell us your plans and send us your pics using the fields below. We love to hear your paddle board stories!