Mellowwave’s Mark Iles is a familiar face within the south coast surfing scene. An avid longboarder (as well as dabbling with new school surfboard shapes) he’s also pretty keen on touring SUP action. It’s no surprise then that MW have introduced a range of stand up paddle boards to their line up. We got hold of their brand new 10ft longboard SUP to put through its paces.
As regular readers of SUPM will be aware we’re fans of longboard SUP surf sleds. For most they offer exactly what riders need, in terms of accessibility and performance. It’s become apparent, however, that this category can be split into two. On one side you have narrower/lower volume boards that are scaled up from their surfing siblings. While at the opposite end of the scale there’s the type reviewed here.
Looking more like an all rounder (on paper) time and again we’re keen to point out dimensions don’t really give the full picture in terms of what a board can do. Coming in wood reveal and red rail livery MW’s 10ft is looser and more manoeuvrable than you’d imagine. With good stability, but displaying a playful nature, it tracks efficiently and glide is good, ensuring riders can pick up waves early.
Once in surf stance the 10ft grips through bottom turns and has enough residual speed to slingshot paddlers up to lips without too much effort. Getting over the fins allows for fulfilling re-directs off the top. It’s not a super critical board for turns but can gouge well. Vertical hits are achievable but riders will need to be right on the tail to avoid pearling when heading back into the trough (we’d suggest a rounded pin tail would help here – something you can change when customising your MW SUP).
Clearing sections in a flash Mellowwave’s 10ft gives paddlers room to breathe and set up for the next move. In particular it loves big round house cutties, across open faces, back into the pocket. Moving feet pro-actively about the deck SUPers will be able to unlock the 10ft’s wave potential. For progressing riders it’s also a good platform for schooling in the ways of the wave.
We love to see new brands coming into the UK SUP market and Mellowwave have delivered a desirable stand up paddle surfer with their 10ft. Fun to burn around the break it turns well and while not quite as critical as some it’s a board many will find favour with. For us we’d get rid of the nose bungee and supplied fins would do best being swapped out for a more performance orientated set – these are just minor points though. Also if waves fail to materialise then MW’s 10ft is fine for a bit of scooting round on the flat.