Photo: Ta-Hoe Nalu

Photo: Ta-Hoe Nalu

Ta-Hoe Nalu Eliminates Pro Aspect

Long ago, before standup paddleboard races existed, the Ta-Hoe Nalu was born from a few paddle and surf enthusiasts from Southern and Northern California here on Lake Tahoe. The first Ta-Hoe Nalu was the brainchild of Ernie Brassard, Bob Pearson and Rick Thomas in 2006. The fist SUP race ever was a race from Tahoe City to Tahoe Vista, eight miles with 32 competitors on SUP surfboards and two prone paddlers. TA-HOE NALU started as a one-race recreational event, adding a grom race for kids 12 and under with a BBG, some music, and a lot of Aloha.

When the Battle of the Paddle (BOP) came on the scene in 2008 with an Elite race and big cash purse, it changed the SUP world of racing by creating the "Pro" element. Ta-Hoe Nalu followed BOP by adding an Elite Race in 2010.

In the past few years, SUP has seen the development of multiple tours, several large prize purse events and other paddle "championships." At the Ta-Hoe Nalu, we've decided to stay true to our roots and foster the recreational paddler. We have counseled with many professionals, our event sponsors, and the World Paddle Association (WPA).

Unanimously, we have concluded that the sport needs to attempt to unite and work together for sustainable growth. We at Ta-Hoe Nalu decided to eliminate the "Pro" aspect of the event, and have removed the cash prize purse associated with the awards. The decision to eliminate the Pro prize purse is to help professional athletes coordinate their calendars and focus on the events that are designed around them, showcasing their talent. We still support professional athletes and welcome all to attend. We have added and Elite/Pro division in the 10-mile Distance and 5-mile Open WPA sanctioned races.

We are also expanding the Hawaiian paddle sport of Outrigger by adding a 6-man Outrigger race and OC-1 categories in the 10-mile and 5-mile events. We're also adding more fun events for all skill levels, with clinics and organized demos, as well as the first XSUP Games Tournament.


The XSUP Games is a fast paced team sport that incorporates competition, strategy, passing, and scoring. Played by two teams of 4 players with the objective of scoring goals, The XSUP Games is a sport unlike anything that the SUP community has seen before.

The Tahoe Nalu XSUP Games tournament will be played on boards provided by Boardworks SUP, helmets by NRS and jersey's by Victory Koredy. Teams of four will be determined by the organizing committee. All you have to do is show up, sign up, play, have fun and win! If you have a team in place, perhaps representing your shop or manufacturer, just let us know and we will make sure your team stays together. This proves to be a great addition to the already spectacular event being held at beautiful Kings Beach, Tahoe. The tournament brackets will fill up fast and we have a limited number of teams allowed so register now.

We invite and welcome all, including Elite athletes, to visit Lake Tahoe and compete at the TA-HOE NALU for the joy and fun of it. SUP has created a culture that's inspired many, and brought them to the world of water sports to enjoy fun, family, friends–and the true Aloha spirit.

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