Pau Hana Solo Backcountry ($1,249)







What we like:

Ultralight and compact build makes it easy to tote far distances.

What we don’t:

No center fin box and thinner materials than most.

Oh what places you’ll visit when you’re on a stand-up paddle board. When your board folds into a compact dry-bag backpack, your adventure list is even more extensive. Pau Hana’s brand new Solo Backcountry is a Houdini in the world of SUPs. It has an overall width of 10′ and 10 inches, a 30-inch width and a thickness of 6 inches It appears to be an ordinary-sized board, but weighs in at only 14.8 pounds (most have at least 20lbs.) It is also flexible enough to fold into a compact package. The paddle is a feat of engineering, featuring the ability to roll and has a three-piece shaft which disappears into an unnoticed corner of your bag. Add the dry bag as well as a repair kit, leash, and pumps, and your complete kit weighs in at just 23 pounds. With this simplified design and design, dragging your board several millimeters (or even) into your preferred river or lake just got a lot simpler.

There are some inherent disadvantages when you choose an ultralight and lightweight design. The first is that the ultralight materials used in the Solo Backcountry aren’t as durable as double-layer PVC which is why you’ll have to take extra attention (although the drop-stitch system allows it to be inflated up to a respectable 15psi.). Additionally, to allow this board to fold down, Pau Hana removed the center fin’s box and went for twin fins. This offers a bit more speed than a traditional three-fin configuration (less drag) however, it’s noticeably less stable. Thirdly, this model Solo Backcountry is definitely expensive at $1,249. We think Pau Hana has nailed the compact design more than other setups such as those of the Red Paddle Co Compact and the Nixy Huntington G4 are both smaller in length at 9’6″ and less lightweight or portable, making this Solo Backcountry our top pick for paddlers who want to explore the trails using their SUP. It’s also worthwhile to mention that iRocker recently launched their Ultra series, a collection of affordable, durable and high-performance boards that have a the primary focus on the weight and portability.


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