2016 marked the 10th anniversary of The Butterfly Effect. Since founder Tatiana Howard started the event, they’ve gotten thousands of women on the water in 18 countries. The Butterfly Effect is a non-competitive event that encourages women to get on the water. They provide clinics (yoga, stroke, etc.) and then go on a downwind run. No men, no pressure to compete. Howard is a ripping surfer, paddler and windsurfer from Maui.
On October 12, Julieta Gismondi and LouAnne Harris set off from the shores of New York City with their sites set on the southernmost state of the American east coast, some 1,500 miles away. Throughout the next four months, their epic paddling adventure carried them through irreplaceable experiences, wrought with unforeseen challenges, unprecedented triumphs and generosity from countless supporters along the way. 125 days after leaving NYC the female paddling duo now famously dubbed the Atlantic SUPergirls stroked into Miami’s Biscayne Bay and successfully completed their mission. Their journey not only inspired thousands of people, but also raised more than $16,000 for charity.
For three years in a row, Team Australia won gold at the ISA World SUP and Paddleboarding Championships. Meanwhile, USA had never won standup paddling’s ultimate battle of nations. That was until last year, when an underdog US team, fueled by spirited efforts from the likes of Izzi Gomez, Candice Appleby and Danny Ching, finally broke through and claimed gold. Filmmaker Brent Deal was there to capture the highs, lows and triumph of America’s run at the top of the podium. And SUP magazine teamed up with him to bring you Chasing Gold, a documentary highlighting the US SUP Team’s improbable run.
It’s hard not to give this award for this race. The Molokai 2 Oahu is the most prestigious race in our sport and always a feat whether you finish first or your finish last. Kai Lenny has won just about every race and accolade that one can achieve in this sport but until this year, an M2O victory eluded him. Not only did he find that victory this year but he also set a new course record against arguably the most stacked field of talent the Ka’iwi Channel has ever seen. For that, he more than deserves this award.
Annabel Anderson has been a force in the SUP world ever since she hit the scene. The outspoken Kiwi has won almost everything you can in the sport, from stock runs across the Ka’iwi Channel during Molokai 2 Oahu, to the Battle of the Paddle (sweeping both the distance and surf races two years in a row). She collected her FOURTH STRAIGHT Carolina Cup victory this year and in crushing fashion, winning by five minutes over top names like Appleby, Wylde, Black and Honscheid. And anyone that’s been to Carolina knows that it’s one of the toughest courses in the business.
Australian Matt Nottage swept downwind week in Australia winning both The Doctor and King of the Cut against the country’s best paddlers, including Travis Grant and James Casey. He also came in third at Maui 2 Molokai, third at the OluKai Ho’olaule’a and fifth at the Japan Cup. While he’s mostly a downwind guy, he has chops in the flats as well. He’s a talented OC-1 paddler a la Ching and Grant. Look for this Aussie to make a big mark on the world stage in the years to come.
29-year-old Floridian Seychelle Hattingh had a big year. She set the 24-hour paddling Guinness World Record, covering 110 miles. She won the 125-mile, five-stage SUP 11 City Tour in the Netherlands for the second year running. She also claimed the “Fastest Paddler on Earth” time trial at Germany’s Lost Mills race, proving that she has both distance and sprint chops.
San Clemente, CA
The Original Female SUP Icon, Winning Countless Races and Surf Contests, 2015 PPG Champion
Holmes Beach/Jupiter, FL
Top Female SUP Surfer, Youngest Women’s Standup World Tour Champion, Pushing the Bar of Women’s SUP Surfing
Lake Wanaka, New Zealand
Best Female Distance Paddler In the World, Challenger for Best Female Paddler Ever, Beating Lots of Men
Fastest Downwind Paddler In the World, Winning Nearly Every Race At Least Once, 2015 PPG Champion
SUP AWARDS HISTORY:
2015 Top Male Paddler No. 3, 2014 Top Male Paddler No. 1, 2014 Best Male Performance, 2013 Top Male Paddler No. 3, 2012 Top Male Paddler No. 1, 2011 Top Male Paddler No. 1
Kahana, Maui, Hawaii
Top Competitor On the Standup World Tour and Series, 2016 Ultimate Waterman Champion, Relentless Stoke for All Thing Ocean.
Mastering Jaws, Multi-SUP Surfing and SUP Racing World Champion, The SUP Movie
SUP AWARDS HISTORY:
2015 Top Male Paddler No. 2, 2014 Top Male Paddler No. 2, 2013 Top Male Paddler No. 1, 2012 Top Male Paddler No. 2
It wasn’t just the perfect weather, potent drinks, appetizing eats or brand new venue at Doheny State Beach that made the 2016 SUP Awards a resounding success. It was the stars. The fans. The paddlers of passion and the lifelong water lovers. Then again, it’s never the award show itself that really makes SUP Awards great. It’s the people who pack the house. Here’s a gallery of the great times from the show floor in tribute to the best night in SUP.
Full recap from the 2016 SUP Awards
2016 SUP Awards Presented by Tommy Bahama Celebrates Standup Paddling
It was another memorable night at the 2016 SUP Awards presented by Tommy Bahama, where an impressive array of the world’s elite athletes, aficionados, philanthropists and filmmakers gathered under the stars at Doheny State Beach. It’s the first year at the new venue—which happens to be the site of #PPG2016—and really, the weather and energy couldn’t have been better for the gala event to celebrate the year’s best.
Returning SUP Awards’ hosts Dave Boehne and Sam George supplied a standup act as they presented the coveted awards, which were voted for by paddling fans around the world. Connor Baxter was voted top Male Paddler of the Year—for the fourth time in SUP Awards’ six-year history—and Candice Appleby, no stranger to the Top Paddler award herself, took home top Female Paddler of the Year honors.
“It was a great surprise,” Baxter said. “The results seem to mix up every year so it’s always interesting. I’m really stoked for my brother Zane and Kai, too. That makes (the top three paddlers) all Maui boys. It’s a great feeling.”
“I’m super surprised and very grateful,” Appleby said. “Thank you SUP the mag, the voters and God for blessing me. Looking forward to a great weekend at PPG!”
Zane Schweitzer (#2) and Kai Lenny (#3) were also honored as top paddlers for their impressive performances this year, along with Izzi Gomez (#2) and Annabel Anderson (#3) on the women’s side.
“I feel super blessed and grateful and want to thank SUP the Mag,” said Schweitzer. “This is what we love, thanks for letting us express ourselves and giving us the opportunity to follow our dreams.
“SUP Awards was lit!” Gomez said. “I love how everyone in the industry comes together for this event. It’s so much fun.”
With a record breaking performance earlier this year at the famed Molokai 2 Oahu, Kai Lenny earned the award for Best Male Performance of the Year.
“It’s such an honor to be recognized for my race at M2O,” said Lenny after his acceptance speech. “My whole gameplay was to just do the channel as fast as possible and it ended up working out for me.”
Annabel Anderson accepted a well-deserved Top Female Performance award for decimating her competition earlier this year at the Carolina Cup–finishing almost a mile ahead of the runner-up.
Representing the sport’s promising future, the young Aussie Matt Nottage brought home the Male Breakthrough Performer award, bursting onto the scene this year with a fourth place finish at the Carolina Cup and coming home third at the Olukai Ho’o. Floridian Seychelle Hattingh earned her award for Female Breakthrough Performer with a spectacular race year, earning impressive results on the Euro Tour and setting the new record for longest distance paddled in a single session–110 miles in 24 hours.
“Winning this award means so much to me,” a shocked and tearful Hattingh said. “Thank you so much to everyone.”
Rounding out the night’s honors, the award for Top Philanthropic Effort went to The Butterfly Effect–an organization dedicated to empowering women through standup paddling and positive attitudes. Movie of the Year honors went to Brent Deal’s new film, Chasing Gold–featuring the story of the US SUP Team’s improbable win at the 2015 ISAs in Mexico. Finally, the Atlantic SUPer Girls–Julieta “Jules” Gismondi and LouAnne Harris–won a SUP Award for Expedition of the Year for their epic 1500-mile journey from New York City to Miami.
Look for more exclusive photos and video from paddling’s biggest night coming soon.
Follow SUP magazine on Facebook and on Twitter @SUPthemag for additional information on the SUP Awards. Use the hashtag #SUPAwards to start the conversation on Twitter and Instagram.
It was another legendary night for the 2016 SUP Awards with the entire industry of standup paddling’s elite gathering for the gala event in our sport. We’ll have a full recap and gallery from the award show coming soon. Meanwhile, check out our live coverage of the highlights via @SUPthemag on Facebook and Instagram.
Here are the results for the 2016 SUP Awards presented by Tommy Bahama.
Male Paddler of the Year
1. Connor Baxter
2. Zane Schweitzer
Female Paddler of the Year
1. Candice Appleby
2. Izzi Gomez
3. Annabel Anderson
Male Performance of the Year
Kai Lenny, M2O
Female Performance of the Year
Annabel Anderson, Carolina Cup
Male Breakthrough Performance
Female Breakthrough Performance
Top Philanthropic Effort
The Butterfly Effect
Movie of the Year
Expedition of the Year
Atlantic SUPer Girls
The 2016 SUP Awards presented by Tommy Bahama are finally here. Tonight, standup paddling royalty will come together beneath the stars at Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, CA to celebrate each others accomplishments including the crowning of the Male and Female Paddler of the Year. With so much talent in one place, it’s sure to be an incredible time and something you won’t want to miss. And thanks to the advancements in social media, you won’t have to! Whether you’re at home or at the ceremony, here are the five best ways to stay up-to-date with all the #SUPAwards action.
Whether taking selfies with your best friends for Instagram or following along at home, this is the hashtag to remember. Include #SUPAwards for all your social media posts. There’s no easier way to make your friends at home very, very jealous they didn’t join you.
Snapchat filters are like…so hot right now. So we decided to join in on the craze and create our very own Snapchat filter for standup paddling’s special night. Using it is easy, just take a picture using the Snapchat app and swipe right until you find specially designed and totally awesome filter.
The crew at SUP the Mag will be working hard to not only provide a rad experience for those at the ceremony, but also our loyal fans at home. So if you aren’t able to make it out to Dana Point tonight, follow along in real time with our dedicated feeds on Facebook Live and Instagram Story. We’ll be broadcasting winner announcements, speeches, and much more content you won’t want to miss.
If you’re having a good time at SUP Awards–which you definitely will be–share some pictures with us. Simply tag @supthemag in your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter–or even Google+ if that’s your thing–and we may just repost your photo on social media. In fact, if you share enough awesome content, we’ll make an exclusive photo gallery on our site featuring user-generated photos. But the only way to get you and your friends’ beautiful smiling faces on our site is to tag @SUPtheMag.
Make it easy to catch all of the action from SUP Awards by following or liking all of our social media channels. We will be sharing the best content, photos, winner updates and more on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Google+. The festivities begin tonight and no matter whether you’re joining us or watching from home. We will be bringing you all the action from standup paddling’s biggest night.
More coverage from SUP Awards.
Want to be live and in-person for the show? A few tickets still remain for SUP Awards.
The first EuroTour awards took place in Dana Point, California coinciding with one of the sports biggest races over the coming weekend. With all the athletes in town, it was the perfect occasion to gather our overall champions and recognize their amazing efforts in Europe this past summer.
In the Women’s side it was American Fiona Wylde (Starboard) coming in 3rd place overall after her efforts which gained her a handful of podium finishes, besides her maiden win in Croatia to prove that she is one of the most well rounded athletes in the sport. In 2nd place Overall was American Seychelle Hattingh (Mistral) who, winning one of the biggest events in Bilbao, and also very strong performances in France & Germany cemented her place amongst the worlds best. Winning the EuroTour for her second consecutive year was none other than Germany’s Sonni Honscheid (SIC) where she went unbeatable all season and retained her crown with ease.
In the men side we had a fierce battle with the world’s best, throughout the 12 weeks of the EuroTour. In 3rd place came world beater Titouan Puyo (NSP) from France; after a very consistent season that showed him conquer the challenging San Sebastian race in the Basque country and accumulate a few podium results throughout the main events. In 2nd place and with a very close battle for first came Michael Booth (Starboard). In a summer where the Aussie virtually conquered almost all the long distance events and showed that few, if any, can match him on the long grinds. In 1st position also for the second year in a row came the undisputed world number one Connor Baxter (Starboard). The Hawaiian is probably the most recognizable figure in the sport and showed his adaptability by winning in France and also the Bilbao World SUP Challenge to secure the overall win.
The complete overall results for the tour can be found below: http://www.eurotoursup.com/rankings
From the entire staff of the EuroTour, we really want to thank all the 12 events for their amazing efforts throughout the entire series and making this project possible. We couldn’t have done it without the help of our sponsors. From our presenting sponsor Starboard that provided great support, besides having the biggest and most successful team on tour. To RedPaddle Co for sourcing the ever popular “XL Race to glory” and the “Junior Racing” that were part of most events on tour and a huge success with all participants. Thanks to Naish for being a Country Sponsor in Finland and also FOne & Howzit for being Tour supporters. We also want to thank all the media parters that shared all the news and press releases with a special mention to Supracer for doing a fantastic job on the Live webcasts and being there with us since day one.
Lastly we want to say special thanks to all the athletes that took place on the events , for sharing your stoke with us and making invaluable memories. We are hard at work with the 2017 edition, so stay tuned for more news shortly.
See you all next year,
With massive success at the inaugural Devil’s Isle Challenge, we’re gearing up and getting excited for Plastic Tides’ second annual Bermuda SUP race for charity next year!
Plans are in motion and dates are set for May 6 and 7 with more info coming soon!
Here’s what you might have missed at this year’s race…
The forty-mile ‘round de island’ race is like nothing SUP has ever seen. Gorgeous yet grueling, the term “Challenge” can’t be emphasized enough. Over half of the solo paddlers threw in the towel confronting choppy conditions that are standard on the island’s treacherous east end. Just finishing the race was a tremendous accomplishment and for those who did, the glory of this novel feat was up for grabs.
In our inaugural year, the bar was set for future record-breakers. New records from this year include: fastest male solo SUP circumnavigation, first-ever female solo SUP circumnavigation, fastest solo circumnavigation of any paddlecraft (surfski), and fastest four-man SUP relay circumnavigation.
Bermudian Chase “Too Good” Toogood took home the male overall crown and coveted “locals’ only” first-place prize that he donated to ocean conservation. His performance earned him the record for fastest solo SUP circumnavigation ever at 10 hours and 52 minutes and cemented his place in history as the third person to ever circumnavigate Bermuda without stopping. Only race organizers and Plastic Tides co-founders Gordon Middleton and Christian Shaw preceded him.
Middleton and Shaw found inspiration for the race during a daring twenty-hour expedition in 2015. The duo paddled through the night to complete the circuit in an effort to stem the flow of plastic microbeads into Bermuda’s pristine waters.
After stepping off a plane in Bermuda for the first time the night before the race, Josette Lata of New Jersey battled sun, salt, and seasickness to become the first woman and fourth paddler to ever complete the solo SUP circumnavigation. She set the bar for women at 11 hours and 56 minutes with her inspiring and tenacious performance.
The America’s Cup Sailing Teams–already on island in preparation for the 2017 finals–jumped at the novel opportunity, bringing with them world-class athleticism.
Olympian and World Champion Kayaker, Anders Gustafsson of Artemis Team Sweden set the record for fastest solo circumnavigation in a paddle craft. Taking on his longest race yet, Anders finished with a blazingly fast time of 5 hours and 25 minutes in his streamlined Swedish flag surfski.
Oracle Team USA came out in force and showed us what was possible with relay circumnavigation, putting up a four-man SUP team and a four-man surfski team.
Anders kept Oracle at bay for three quarters of the race before the endurance of the relay finally caught him…barely. Oracle came in just over five minutes ahead of Anders at 5 hours and 19 minutes.
The Oracle SUP relay set a ridiculously fast record at 7 hours and 25 minutes. We expect the SUP relay race to grow exponentially next year, with a radical new format and strategies never before seen in SUP racing.
Day two featured a full day of fun for the whole family with SUP Limbo and the 360 Spin Off as crowd favorites. The intermediate six-mile race took paddlers on a stunning lap around Somerset Island with a host of turtle companions. Nearly 20 kids raced this year and took home lots of cool raffle prizes including a new Werner Vibe. The permaculture workshop taught event-goers about sustainable gardening and avoiding plastics through homegrown and locally sourced food. Best of all, the entire event was completely PLASTIC-FREE.
None of this would have been possible without the tremendous help from so many local individuals and businesses. Bermuda is a beautiful place, but it’s not just the water, wildlife, and reefs–it’s the people. We love you Bermuda!
All proceeds from the race went directly to our newly established SUP’r Kids Bermuda program, providing free paddling opportunities to Bermuda’s youth.
The program gets kids that wouldn’t otherwise have this opportunity out on the water, connecting them directly with nature. Just over a week after the race, we hosted our first free paddleboard session. Ten students from Dalton E. Tucker Primary joined us out on the water. They learned how to paddle, work as a team and got to see over thirty turtles during the hour-long session.
We look forward to many sessions to come and with the support of local volunteers, we know that this program has a bright future. Check out this brief article from Bernews for more photos and reach out if you wish to be involved!
We aim to get every child in Bermuda on a paddleboard because we know that those who play in the ocean are driven to protect it.
More information about this year’s inaugural Devil’s Isle Challenge.
More Plastic Tides
It’s another beautiful day at Cardiff reef.
Surf is a steady three to four feet with bigger sets. Conditions are clean and I am stoked there have been a few double-ups ledging on the reef with the incoming tide. That last wave was pretty sick and as I am paddling back out I look over just in time to see a guy on a surfski go over the falls on a clean, hollow right. Based on the size and weight of that board I’m thinking to myself, “That’s gonna leave a mark.”
I return my attention to the incoming sets and after a moment I realize the guy on the ski still hasn’t surfaced. With my eyes pealed I finally see that this surfer is slowly drifting out of the impact zone, but appears to be struggling to remount his board. As he takes the next two waves on the head my concerns elevate and I paddle over to assist him. It looks like he needs some help.
Within moments, I’ve descended on the paddler trying not to get entwined in what appears to be a slew of equipment: leash, board and a paddle attached to his board with another leash. ‘Is all this gear necessary?’ I’m thinking to myself as I try to assess whether this guy’s troubles resulted from getting hit by his board.
Upon closer inspection he appears coherent and happy to see that help has arrived. I ask him, ‘You OK man?’ but before he can say a thing, we collectively brace for another wave of whitewater. As we emerge he says, “I’m OK. I could use some help getting back on my board though.”
I’m happy to assist in stabilizing his board as he begins to pull himself up and get situated. What I expected to be a quick mount becomes a 30-second endeavor. During the process, it becomes obvious that this guy does not have use of his legs and was mustering all his upper-body strength to compensate.
“Wow,” I think to myself – this guy has a lot of balls being out here, competing in decent-sized surf on what appears to be a pretty antiquated craft.
“My name’s Mark, what’s yours?” he says.
“Aubrey,” I respond with a new found respect. “Thanks a lot!” Mark says as we disengage. As he starts to paddle back into the lineup, I realize he didn’t really need my help. Although I’d seen him in the water before, I never knew he was an adaptive surfer.
Who would have known, that this encounter would draw me deep into the daily struggles that adaptive surfers like Mark face; not only in the water but in merely getting to and from the beach.
Over the next several months, every time I saw Mark in his van in the parking lot, I’d give up a good chunk of my surf time to assist him: riding his wheelchair lift up to the roof to get his board down, waiting to assist him with his wetsuit or board preparation, transporting him to the water while on his board using a trailer device, and giving him a well-timed water launch to beat the next set.
Although Mark never showed any signs of discouragement being an adaptive surfer, I couldn’t help but picture myself in his situation. Considering what changes I would have to make in order to maintain the same sense of freedom and enjoyment that surfing has provided me for more than 40 years.
Needless to say, the thoughts I had were none too positive and after considering the tools that Mark was working with–dilapidated van, worn out wheel chair, etc.–it moved me to a point where I decided some action needed to be taken. I wanted to help enable any adaptive surfer with the ability to be independent in their pursuit of surfing, an ability other surfers take for granted on a daily basis.
Although Cobian has been providing quality sandals and casual footwear for more than 20 years, it was formed by John Cobian as a platform to serve others less fortunate. So not surprisingly, after sharing this initiative with our project team, it took all of about one second for the team to give resounding thumbs up.
Our goal is to work with a variety of adaptive surfers at the forefront of the sport, to identify needs related to their surf vehicles–including associated accessories, devices, surf equipment–in an effort to design and manufacture the Ultimate Adaptive Surf Vehicle.
If successful, this project would enable our participating athletes to demo the effectiveness of the UASV project and hopefully inspire other adaptive athletes to join the adaptive surfing movement and community.
At the end of the day, it is our hope that this project will enable all adaptive surfers to be as autonomous as possible in their pursuit of catching waves–providing them with a stoke that can only come from the ocean.
This is the first installment in of SUP magazine’s six-part Adaptive Paddling series.
More feel-good stories about paddlers helping others.
One adaptive paddler’s mission to never give up.
Words by Rebecca Parsons
Due to the fact that one in five people will get skin cancer, it’s important for us aquatic humans to lather up before we paddle out. But surprisingly, the sun isn’t the only factor contributing to skin cancer. Sunscreen has been found to cause cancer as well. The chemicals found in traditional sunscreens are harmful to the skin and are also polluting our waters, threatening marine life and destroying coral reefs. So do you ditch the lotion and get fried by the sun? Probably wouldn’t be your best move. We’ve rounded up five all-natural sunscreens that are safe for both you and the environment. You might consider making the switch.
DO Naturals Sunscreen
DO Naturals sunscreen does not contain parabens, petrochemicals or nano-particles. Its active ingredients are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, with all of its inactive ingredients being plant-derived. It has an organic aloe base instead of water, so a little goes a long way. 60% of proceeds are donated to rainforest conservation and tree reforestation.
Manda prides itself in being comprised of organic ingredients you’ll actually recognize: thanaka, coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter, cocoa butter, cacao powder, cinnamon oil and the active ingredient, non-nano zinc oxide. Thanaka comes from the wood of a tree in Myanmar and has been used by the people of Berma for over 2000 years to protect and beautify the skin. Made from the highest quality, all-natural ingredients, Manda is designed with athletes in mind. It is extremely waterproof/sweatproof so that you can stay out on the water without having to worry whether or not it’s working.
Founders Nova Covington and Paul Halter became aware of the need for alternative skincare products when they discovered their daughter was allergic to the chemicals in traditional sunscreens. Goddess Garden natural sunscreen uses the pure minerals zinc oxide and titanium dioxide as its active ingredients. Their top priorities are helping people safely enjoy the sun as well as helping the planet. As a result, Garden Goddess annually donates to non-profits focused on families and the environment.
Designed in California, Bare Republic is 100% chemical-free. It contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, as well as plant-derived antioxidants to protect and nourish your skin. This water resistant formula with its all-natural coconut vanilla scent will keep active and protected.
Sun Bum Signature
While Sun Bum makes traditional sunscreen, the Signature line is a premium, mineral-based sunscreen. It is specifically designed with water athletes in mind and won’t bleed into your eyes, make your hands slippery or come off during rigorous activity. It is used and trusted by many lifeguard and beach rescue organizations throughout the United States.
More gear reviews.
The JP-Australia SUP team recently held their annual photo shoot featuring athletes including James Casey, Keahi de Aboitiz, and many others. The locations for this epic shoot? Maui and Croatia. So sit back and enjoy some of standup paddling’s top athletes shred in paradise with this slick edit.
More SUP surfing action from James Casey at Sunset Beach.
Keahi de Aboitiz rips down under.
It’s no secret that Badfish SUP has a dream team of river paddlers. From GoPro Mountain Games champ Spencer Lacy to up-and-coming groms like Miles Harvey to whitewater wonderwomen like Natali Zollinger, Heather Jackson and Brittany Parker, the squad is stacked with standing-wave surfers and rapid mavens who consistently produce some of the most progressive paddling on the planet. The team’s new whitewater compilation should be all you need to understand—and appreciate—the current state of river SUP.
Spencer Lacy SUP surfs spectacular Skookumchuck
More big whitewater
Paddlers gathering for a good cause is nothing new. Throughout the year, countless charity and awareness SUP events are held around the country and throughout the world. This video highlights a recent event held in Annapolis, Maryland, in which over 100 paddlers showed up to support the restoration of the Spa Creek Watershed in the downtown Annapolis area. Not only did paddlers get to enjoy a nice day on the water while meeting new friends, but they were also educated about what they can do to help preserve their local waterway. It’s just another example of paddlers doing their part to make a positive difference in their communities.
More uplifting stories about paddlers who #standupforothers
Learn how climate change could have a big impact on SUP.
As paddlers, we have the unique opportunity to explore one of the biggest and most amazing ecosystems on the planet: the ocean. And if we’re lucky, our paddle strokes will bring us over sea lions engaged in a morning hunt, a pod of dolphins frolicking in each other’s company, or give us an up-close view to a breaching whale. It’s moments like these that make paddling so special and leave us itching to share our tales with family and friends. But more often than not, people are unsure of what exactly they’ve encountered. We want to put an end to that. Here, we’ve compiled a list of common marine mammal sightings to give you some knowledge and insight about the creatures we are lucky enough to share our playground with.
Common dolphins earned their name due to the fact that they are found in every ocean in the world. These dolphins are very social and travel in pods composed of hundreds of individuals. The top of their body is dark gray and the underside is a whitish color, with a unique hourglass pattern on the side of the body. They are one of the smaller dolphin species and reach maturity between 7.5 and 8.5 feet in length.
You probably recognize this well-known dolphin species from movies and theme parks across the world. One of the larger dolphin species, these cetaceans can weigh up to 1,100 pounds and grow 10 to 14 feet in length. They are particular to the tropics, but can be found in waters ranging anywhere from 50 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. They are medium to dark gray in color, have a sleek, streamlined bodies, and always appear to be wearing a smile.
These light to dark brown pinnipeds are often referred to as the “dogs of the sea.” Sexual dimorphism is found among this species, with females weighing around 220 pounds and males weighing in around 850 pounds. They are typically found between Vancouver Island, British Columbia and Baja California, Mexico. Unlike seals, they have external ear flaps, are extremely vocal, and can rotate their hind flippers which allows them to “walk on land.”
Pacific harbor seals–found north of the equator in both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans–are known for their beautiful, spotted coats. At full maturity, they typically weigh around 300 pounds with males being slightly larger than females. They are true seals, meaning they lack external ear flaps and use their small, front flippers to propel themselves forward on land in a worm-like fashion.
Gray whales are baleen whales that are predominantly found in the Pacific Ocean. They typically grow to be 45 feet in length and are gray in color, with white patches of lice and barnacles across their body. They lack a dorsal fin and instead have a low hump, in addition to six to twelve knuckles across their back. These whales have the longest known migration of any mammal. Each year, they make the trek from their summer feeding site in the Arctic to their winter breeding grounds in Baja.
Blue whales are the largest animals on Earth, reaching lengths of 70-90 feet and weighing between 200,000-300,000 pounds. These baleen whales have been found in every ocean across the world and are typically spotted swimming alone or in small groups. Their bodies are long and streamlined, with small dorsal fins and long, thin pectoral fins. They earned their name due to the fact that they are bluish-gray in color, but when spotted under the water their body shimmers a magnificent blue.
These baleen whales are found in every ocean worldwide, typically along the edges of polar ice. They earned the name “humpback” because of the hump-like shape of their dorsal fin. They have long, wing-like pectoral fins and are typically gray to black in color, except for a portion of the fins and underside of the body. This particular whale species is popular among humans because they breach regularly and slap the water with their fins and fluke as a form of communication.
Source: The Marine Mammal Center (http://www.marinemammalcenter.org/)
Are pigs marine mammals too? This one seems to think so.
SUP animal encounters caught on film.
South African waterman Chris Bertish is gearing up to cross the Atlantic Ocean on a standup paddleboard.
This big-wave surfer and all-around waterman will be the newest paddler to attempt an unassisted, transatlantic SUP crossing. Bertish will begin his expedition in Morocco with the goal of reaching Florida–including stops in the Canary and Caribbean Islands. In total, Bertish plans to paddle 4,500 miles in 120 days.
As you may remember, this is not the first time someone’s attempted to cross the Atlantic by way of standup paddleboard. Earlier this year, Frenchman Nicolas Jarossay set off from Africa’s Cape Verde with dreams of reaching the Caribbean island of Martinique. Within less than 24 hours, those dreams nearly ended in death when Jarossay’s prototype SUP flipped and he was unable to self-right his rig. It was a testament to the preparedness and experience required to cross an ocean by oneself.
Thankfully, Bertish has no shortage of preparation. He has been preparing for not one…not two…but five long years. In the video above, check out what Bertish has to say about his extraordinary attempt and how he plans to help charities and school kids along the way.
What went wrong with Nicolas Jarossay’s failed transatlantic attempt.
There’s a lot of awesome SUP-loving animals out there. From dogs to cats and goats to ducks, animals just seem to love riding standup paddleboards with their masters. However, this little guy might just be our favorite animal of all-time. Meet Kama–Oahu’s SUP surfing pig. One day, Kama began following his owner–Kai Holt–down to the water when he would go surfing. Eventually, Holt put Kama on his SUP and as it turned out, Kama is a nose-riding machine. So check out this incredible video that is sure to brighten your day.
Meet Beep Beep, standup paddling’s favorite duck.
While you’re in the mood for it, check out this SUP surfing goat from California.
Oceana County, Michigan—After a year plagued by tragic accidents on the water another SUP death struck the community Monday afternoon near Mears State Park on Lake Michigan. The victim, a 10-year-old girl named Hannah Harris, was playing with her younger sister on standup paddleboards offshore while their dad was working on the roof of a nearby cottage. Neither sister was wearing a life jacket or leash.
“The conditions on the lake (were) really pretty rough,” says Lt. Craig Mast with the Oceana County Sheriff’s Department. “Between three- and four-foot waves yesterday afternoon. We had a pretty good offshore breeze producing those waves.”
It’s presumed the girls lost control of their paddleboards and fell into the rough water.
“We are led to believe the younger sister tried to assist her older sister, and realized that that was causing her to struggle as well,” says Lt. Mast. “She then had to release and swim for shore herself.”
The younger sister made it to shore. Hannah had been in the water for too long by the time police arrived and administered CPR. She passed away that afternoon, becoming the 41st drowning victim claimed by Lake Michigan this year.
All things SUP safety
The Common Sense of SUP Safety
Spate of SUP Deaths In Summer 2016
Tourist Dies Standup Paddling in San Diego Bay
Red Bull Heavy Water is an extreme event. Extreme athletes, extreme venue, extreme sponsor and if conditions align during this final week of the month-long waiting period (Open from September 1 until September 28 ), the show will be extremely entertaining. If not, we may have to wait until next year to get so extreme, but as Kai Lenny attests, the competition will be extremely worth the wait, regardless. So, what exactly is Red Bull Heavy Water? We caught up with Lenny for an updated breakdown and some insight about what to expect from Red Bull’s premier event in standup paddleboarding.
SUP: What is Red Bull’s goal in creating this race?
KL: I think Red Bull’s goal, and what this race will become known for, is creating an event for SUP similar to what the Eddie Aikau contest is for surfing. Maybe it won’t get big enough to run some years, but when it does it will be the best spectacle there is. There will be 40 of the best guys on the planet going head-to-head in giant surf as fast as they can. To win this type of race is such an accomplishment because you’re not just going up against the best paddlers, you’re going against the best of Mother Nature.
This is Red Bull’s first standup paddling event. What’s the relevance of such a prominent brand getting involved in the industry?
Having Red Bull involved in standup paddling and putting on an event is huge for the industry because they’re the most legitimate action sports brand out there and they put their money where their mouth is. They want to have the best event possible and have the conditions be absolutely all-time. They’re aiming to host one of the gnarliest SUP races ever, next-level from anything we’ve ever seen.
What makes the San Francisco Bay and Ocean Beach such an ideal venue for a race like this?
The waves at Ocean Beach are always big and with a month-long waiting period it has potential for conditions to be spectacular. It’s an awesome venue for the spectators because they’ll get to see the racers charging huge surf on these massive race boards with the potential to actually get barreled. The race starts in a heavy surf zone at Ocean Beach and wraps into San Francisco Bay. Competitors will need to be super methodical approaching the Golden Gate Bridge and take the right line to either avoid the current or use it as an advantage. It’s going to be the most technical condition-based race ever, and the coolest part is that fifty percent will be through the waves and the other fifty percent will be a flatwater and/or downwind paddle.
The forecast is calling for a bump in surf during the coming weekend but nothing too extreme. How do you see the event playing out as we approach the final days of the waiting period? Will it run?
Ideally we’ll wait for the swell to bump up a bit more. It’s fun because at Ocean Beach you never know what the conditions will really be like until you’re there checking it. It can always be bigger or smaller than what’s being predicted. It’s going to come down to the organizers making the right call, but it’s basically at the will of Mother Nature. A lot can change in the amount of time between now and the end of the waiting period so let’s just hope the swell kicks up.
What do you foresee being the future legacy of this race? How do you see it progressing in years to come?
I think if the conditions are right and it runs as planned it’s going to be a huge success. It’s going to be a very actionable race in terms of carnage and sheer wave-riding and fitness level as well. This is going to be a reoccurring event every year as long as the first one is as unbelievable as we expect it to be. In the right conditions, it will be phenomenal to witness, and they’re not going to run it in mediocre conditions. That said, there’s a lot of potential for it to run before the end of the waiting period so there’s no counting it out yet.
More Kai Lenny.
More Heavy Water.
Tired of towel changing? We feel you. After thousands of changes in soggy, sandy and too-small bath towels along comes something that we’d never anticipated: the Dryrobe Advance LS. This thing really is a game-changer. Designed for surfers, paddlers, triathletes, swimmers and anyone who has to change in the public outdoors the Dryrobe keeps you warm, covered and comfortable for all your changing needs.
We were skeptical to add another piece of gear to our beach-changing kit what with all the paddles, leashes, water jugs, wax, watches, sunscreens, etc., but the Dryrobe is quickly becoming a staple in the back of our vehicles for those days when it’s chilly, windy or overcast.
It’s also got some nice touches to it: an MP3 pocket inside, other pockets for long underwear, a beanie or a wallet, a plush hood, and arm holes big enough that it’s easy to pull in your arms to change completely underneath it. The faux lambswool interior is slightly scratchy when wet but is generally pretty warm and cozy. We put it out in the rain for a half-hour and afterwords the interior was still totally dry, even though the outer layer held the smallest amount of water.
Those features mean it’s pretty bulky, but you can also purchase a compression sack so it’s easier to store and travel with.
Overall, this is a luxury item that you might just absolutely need if you try it, especially if you live in places like the Pacific Northwest, New Zealand or the mountains and still like to get after it when its cold.
$179 as tested
Whether standup paddling into overhead wedges at his home break in Haleiwa, Oahu, championing races at events like Payette River Games and Pacific Paddle Games or stroking into monsters at big-wave breaks like Jaws and Mavericks, Mo Freitas is perpetually pushing the waterman lifestyle. The latest edit to come from Freitas and his sponsor Body Glove, aptly titled This is Mo Freitas, showcases Mo in his element on a variety of crafts, constantly redefining the extent of progressive SUP circa 2016.
More North Shore: Mo Freitas’ Hawaiian Winter
See inside Mo Freitas’ SUP ride.
For five thriving years, SUP Awards has been a pillar of success in the standup paddling world. It’s helped to legitimize the sport, recognize the accomplishments of incredible athletes and propel the rapid expansion of the standup paddling industry all while simultaneously providing free drinks and a killer who’s-who shindig for top paddlers to look forward to each year. With the 2016 SUP Awards merely one week away, we thought it pertinent to take a look back at some highlights from SUP Awards past. Enjoy!
In the famed words of Mark Twain, “The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” That phrase rings true for just about everything in life–including learning to paddle. So for those of you who have never set foot on a standup paddleboard before–what are you waiting for? SUP is a beginner-friendly sport and veteran paddlers will always be happy to assist you. In the meantime, check out this tutorial video that teaches the basics of SUP to first-time paddlers.
Learn a basic SUP yoga pose with this tutorial video.
Stay balance with these footwork fundamentals.
The stigma that keeps standup paddlers at bay in crowded surf zones is real. The wariness of traditional surfers, particularly high-performance shortboarders, is valid. It manifests in the lack of safety and equity caused by clashing styles of wave riding in a busy lineup, one that inherently beckons conflict, if not disaster, when forced at the wrong break without proper etiquette. But with exaggerated respect, general courtesy and an understanding of surfing hierarchy, it is possible for SUP to coexist with surfing. Here, former surfing champion and US SUP Team coach Ian Cairns shares some pointers that might help earn you and the rest of SUP surfing a secure spot in the local lineup. –MM
Find a peak with the fewest surfers out
Always spend time on the beach surveying the surf and selecting the wave you want to ride. This gives you the chance to find a wave with the fewest surfers on it, so that, from the get-go, you are reducing the potential for conflict.
Paddle out around the break
Because you have been watching, you have seen that there are sets and lulls and that there are channels that run out around the breaking peaks. Paddle out in the channel during a lull. If there are constant sets of waves and the paddle out is too hard, find an easier wave to ride.
Do not get in the way of a rider on the wave
When you’re paddling out always look for a rider on a wave. He has right of way, so try to let him surf past you rather than paddling into his path. Getting run over is not fun, can cause injury, damage to your board and is a major no-no in surfing.
Do not bail your board
If you’re caught inside of a set of waves, you need to learn to kick your board over the wave, rather than bailing out. Bailing sends your board over the falls and it may hit someone behind you. Kicking it over means the board will probably be next to you as you come up. If there are further set waves, turn the board to the beach, look for people that you may hit if you get pushed to the beach and hang on the tail of the board to control your equipment without letting it go. Another idea is to hold the leash as close to the tail of the board as possible and pull the board through the whitewater.
Check who’s in the lineup
As you paddle out, survey the lineup to see who is out already. These guys are in front of you, in line for the next waves, so be cool and remember them. Make sure that you identify the alpha dog in the pack. He is the one you may have problems with, so you need to be ultra respectful and surprise him with kindness.
Wait your turn
Because you know who is out and who needs waves before you, you can easily figure out when your turn in the rotation for waves is about to come up. You get one try at this. How you handle your first wave is often how you’re judged by the pack, so try to get it right and surf it your best.
Give waves away
Sometimes, even if it’s really your turn, give a good wave to someone else who looks hungry. Often they will paddle just to test you, so back off and generously let them go, but make sure you both know that you’re just being cool and generous. It’s a rare occurrence and will build goodwill.
Because you’re standing, you can see the set waves coming before anyone, so tell the crew that a set is coming and which wave is better. In this way, you dish up some good waves to the crew and they start to think you’re not so stupid, not cool yet, but not so bad.
Sit down and talk
Constant paddling through a crew in the lineup is seen as threatening to the surfers, so chill out, sit down and wait for your turn. This makes you human and not an eyesore and you may actually start up a conversation with some of the guys out there. Be sociable but not too eager.
Be aware of your wave count
It’s really important to be aware of the amount of good waves you’re taking. Keep count of your waves relative to the rest of the pack’s. It’s easy to look like a wave hog, which is the opposite of your intention. Get a few good ones and move along. That will make you some friends for next time you’re out there.
Do NOT drop in
If someone is already riding the wave, don’t even paddle for it, don’t hover on the top of the wave, don’t take off in front of someone then kick out and certainly don’t ride a whole wave ahead of someone with the right-of-way and stuff them into the whitewater. If you do this you’re back in the doghouse and may be asked to leave.
Do NOT back-paddle
Be super aware of who is out, where they are and whose turn it is for the next ride. Do not paddle around someone sitting and waiting for a wave. It is considered a very aggressive move in regular surfing and doing it will earn you serious heat and a trip to the beach.
Be aware of surfers paddling out when you’re riding
As you’re paddling for a wave, scope the length of the wave for any surfer who’s paddling out, who may potentially paddle in front of you. Although the surfer riding the wave typically has priority, the SUP surfer will usually be viewed in the wrong if there’s a mix up. Be vigilant to avoid any impacts or close calls with surfers.
Increase wave count by catching wide waves
If you’re smart about your paddling and really scope a lineup, you may find that there are good wide or deep waves that are not readily available to the surfers in the primary lineup and this is the way you can increase your wave-count considerably, riding waves that before had gone unridden. To do this you will really need to sharpen your spin-and-go skills, but once you get that dialed, you’re on your way to getting way more waves, without ever impacting the established lineup and the surfers out there.
Move around to other peaks
Do not wear out your welcome. Get a few waves and move on. There are usually many other waves in a surf area, so get a few and move to another peak and practice your magic on a new crew of surfers. This is a sign of respect and will be recognized and rewarded with future bonus waves.
The lineup is a close-knit community
Most surfers go to the same spot over and over. They become “locals” out there and make friends and acquaintances with the other surfers who frequent the break. You can be part of this local crew if you’re cool, friendly, don’t hog waves, generally understand and respect the locals and don’t perpetuate the SUP surfer stereotypes that earn standup guys a bad rap.
Have fun out there!
A Brush-up on SUP Safety Basics
Belize: An Idyllic Beginner SUP Destination
SUP magazine created the SUP Awards as standup paddling’s top honor, recognizing the absolute best that this sport has to offer. Our editorial staff tediously collects nominations from readers and fans over the first half of the year. Now it’s up to YOU to rank standup’s Top 3 Male Paddlers, Top 3 Female Paddlers, Movie of the Year, Top Expedition and Top Philanthropic Effort. Honorees will be presented at the SUP Awards show Wednesday, September 28, 2016 at Doheny State Beach in Dana Point, California. For the first time ever, the award show is open to the public with a select amount of tickets available.
San Juan Capistrano, CA – September 16th, 2016 – 404 is proud to announce Hawaiian Mark Healey as the newest member of their team. Fairly new to the SUP world, Mark is best known for his big-wave surfing, award winning spear-fishing, free diving, bow hunting, and Hollywood stuntman work.
Mark and 404 will be developing a board designed for diving, spearing, and touring and will be available in the Spring of 2017.
About 404 LLC
404 is dedicated to providing the highest quality SUP boards with the uncompromised goal of performance. The story of 404 first started at the 2009 Battle of the Paddle. Greg Jensen, a former professional surfer and shaper, and Danny Ching, a world-renowned outrigger paddler, met and decided to join forces. The two believe that the compliment of a knowledgeable shaper and someone who could test the limits of board design, would only lead to the best available SUP products on the market.
Fast-forward to the present, and stand up paddling is far more than just one type of paddling. 404’s roots are in racing, but quickly embraced the diversity of SUP and vows that every paddler, no matter ability or activity, deserves the highest quality of boards to help them achieve their best performance possible.
32240 Paseo Adelanto
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
San Juan Capistrano, California — September 16, 2016— BruSurf launches Snapdragon SUP, its line of women-focused standup paddleboards. With the exploding popularity of Stand Up Paddling among women, BruSurf has expanded its operations to focus on technical designs and branding for this important market.
The company’s CEO, George Mayou, says: “We are looking to grow organically this year with a great line up of new SUP products that complement and enhance our existing product lines. Our brand new women’s line, Snapdragon SUP, was incredibly well received during its launch at the September 2016 Surf Expo in Orlando, and our dealer base is super excited about this new brand. We believe that women should not have to choose a board from a selection that is designed primarily for men. So we designed an affordable line of smaller, stable, lightweight boards that are easier to transport, get on and off the car, and down to the beach or lake. Our women’s brand fuses energy and tranquility in a burst of spontaneous, fresh, bright colors, representing the exhilaration and freedom that Stand Up Paddle Boarding brings.”
Snapdragon SUP board sizes are 9’2”, 9’6″, 10”, 10’6”, 11” as well as a 11’6″ Touring Style. The boards have been designed using proven shapes with bold, colorful graphics with light-weight vacuum bag construction. Dealers leverage the extra value that BruSurf brings to the table, and have done incredibly well selling their products. Top customers include: Up Sports, Oceanside, CA; Fast Lane, San Diego, CA; Waxer’s Surf and Skate, Coos Bay, OR and Blue Line Surf & Paddle, Jupiter, FL. The company’s marketing focus and strong social media presence is committed to supporting their dealer base, driving customers to their stores and ensuring continuing profitability and brand success. Snapdragon SUP can be found online at snapdragonsup.com, Instagram @snapdragonstandup and www.facebook.com/snapdragonsup.
BruSurf continues to enjoy phenomenal sales growth with its constantly expanding dealer network. Growth can be attributed to their strong dealer focus, which includes a fleet of eco-friendly delivery vans to quickly supply customers from their West & East Coast warehouses.
BruSurf, a surf distribution company, established in 2010 and based in San Juan Capistrano, California, with warehouses on both the East and West Coasts, is a leading surf distribution company and registered owner of the BruSurf SUP and Snapdragon SUP trademarks.
“Not Your Boyfriend’s Board”
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