Tower Paddle Boards Adventurer Inflatable 9’10” SUP Review
The Tower Adventurer inflatable SUP is a portable alternative to a standard rigid stand-up paddle board (SUP). The savings in size and weight over a traditional board have made inflatable boards an attractive option for those looking to get into this fast-growing water sport.
Traditionally, inflatable boards have had to trade off maneuverability and durability with ease of transport and setup. The Tower Adventurer offers much of the load capacity and durability of a rigid board in a much more compact package, giving the curious newcomer to this sport a chance to try it without the additional investment of roof racks to transport the board.
The Tower Adventurer makes us of heavy duty materials and construction to offer many of the advantages of a rigid board without the weight, storage, and transport issues that come along with such boards. When properly inflated, it offers many of the positives of a rigid board with few of the negatives.
- Thickness — While many inflatable SUPs are only 4″ thick, the Tower Adventurer is a full 6″, adding to both stability and rigidity.
- Weight capacity — Offering up to 350 pounds of carrying capacity means that it can be used for tandem applications as well.
- Drop-stitch construction — Thousands of very fine stitches at the seams offer a far superior joint strength over fused seams.
- Heavy-duty materials — Military-grade PVC offers superior durability and tear and puncture resistance.
- Compact size — At 25 pounds and approximately the same size as a rolled sleeping bag, transport is a snap.
- Performance — When properly inflated (to between 10 and 15 PSI), this SUP offers much the same stability and maneuverability of a hard board, meaning the compromise in performance is minimal.
- Toughness — The combination of superior materials with heavy duty construction means that this SUP can be used in even demanding applications like white-water rapids and rocky shallow waters.
- Portability — The compact size and low weight means that transport is not an issue, even for smaller riders. Also, it does not have to be stored indoors, but instead can be kept in a garage or shed in the off season.
- Demanding applications — For those looking to use the board for the toughest areas, there will always be a trade-off in performance between an inflatable SUP and a rigid one. For experienced riders in tougher situations where every bit of maneuverability is crucial, an inflatable will never be quite as nimble or fast as a rigid board.
- Flex — Even the best inflatable board will have some flex under heavier loads, although this can be minimized with proper inflation. Heavier riders or tandem riders especially need to pay close attention to both weight limits as well as inflation guidelines.
- Cost — Consumers often expect an inflatable SUP to be significantly lower in price than a comparable rigid SUP, and this often not the case. The cost of an inflatable SUP is usually lower than a rigid, but the price reflects the premium paid for portability and ease of use, and many consumers are put off by this initially.
Who this is best for
- New Riders — Those looking to try this sport without the need for costly transport options (roof racks, etc.)can jump right in without worrying about such things. Easy transport and storage remove some of the roadblocks to enjoyment that come with a large, rigid board.
- Small riders — The light weight and small form factor mean that even a petite rider can easily transport this SUP from vehicle to water without a lot of worry. Backpackers — Anyone wanting to transport a SUP to a hiking destination will appreciate the form factor of the Tower Adventurer, as it barely takes up more space than a sleeping bag, and is easily hiked in and out.
Who this is not for
- Highest level riders — The riders in the most demanding of applications, who need every last bit of agility and maneuverability will have to give up some bit of that to use an inflatable SUP, and will most likely go with a rigid board.
The Last Word
While not a traditional SUP, the Tower Adventurer offers many of the advantages of one with a minimal trade-off in performance. It offers a great deal of convenience for new and experienced riders alike with its light weight and small form factor when not in use.
The cost is not radically different from many rigid boards but because it is so easy to transport and maintain it will prove to be a popular option with riders of all levels of experience. The difference in performance between this and a traditional rigid board will be minimal to all except the riders with the most demanding applications.
Very little is given up in performance and much is offered in convenience in the Tower Adventurer, and as an all-around choice for those looking for an inflatable SUP it is a very attractive option.