Isle Paddle Board Reviews

In this section, we go over all of the inflatable models in these Isle Paddle Board Reviews. 

Isle Surf and SUP has been one of the OG paddle board manufacturers for a while and were one of the first ones to provide quality inflatable paddle boards to the public eye

Since then, Isle has made a good name for itself as one of the more reliable SUP manufacturers out there. Recently they added designer Jimmy Blakeney who has had vast experiences in a variety of paddling pursuits and was formerly employed by BIC. Some of his insight has improved and created products like the Switch Kayak + SUP Hybrid board. 

The purpose of this section is to go through all of Isle’s inflatable paddle boards and let you know specifically what board is good for what purposes as well as things to look out for.

Let’s get into it!

Isle Paddle Board Review Lines

Isle makes inflatable paddle boards that are known to be more stability focused compared to other brands. This makes them ideal for beginners or activities like SUP yoga or even SUP fishing. But we’ll get more into which boards are good for what below. 

To Jump to Each Section Click “Jump to Review” on the right under Price

BoardDimensionsWeightMax CapacityActivityPrice
Pioneer 2.010’6” X 34” X 6”24 Lbs285 LbsRecreational$$$$

Jump to
Review
Explorer 2.011’6” X 32” X 6”24 Lbs300 LbsRecreational/ Light Touring$$$$

Jump to
Review
Switch Kayak + SUP11’6” X 35.5” X 6”19 Lbs425 LbsRecrfeational/ Kayaking$$$$$

Jump to
Review
Sportsman11’6” X 36” X 6”27.6 Lbs350 LbsRecreational/ Fishing$$$$$

Jump to
Review
Grom8’6” X 28” X 6”18.6 Lbs145 LbsRecreational$$$

Jump to
Review
Megalodon 12’12’ X 45” X 8”34 Lbs650 LbsRecreational$$$$$$

Jump to
Review
Megalodon 15’15’ X 56” X 8”50 Lbs1050 LbsRecreational $$$$$$$

Jump to
Review
$ = $200, we do this because prices fluctuate over time

Isle Pioneer 2.0 (Beginner SUP)

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 10’6” X 34” X 6”
  • Board Weight: 24 Lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 285 Lbs
  • Materials: Air-Tech Fusion and cross-threaded drop stitch

Total Score: 8/10 (Accumulation of Below Scores)

  • On-Water Performance – 8
    • Stability 9
    • Tracking 7.5
    • Speed 7.5
    • Maneuverability 8
  • SUP Construction – 8
  • Board Features – 7.8
    • Deck Pad 8
    • D Rings 7
    • Deck Bungees 8
    • Handles 8
  • Accessories – 8
    • Backpack 8
    • Paddle 9
    • Pump 7.5
    • Fins 7.5
  • Set-Up/ Take Down – 8

Who It’s For

The Isle Pioneer’s profile are best suited for brand new paddlers who have very little to no experience paddle boarding and want something that they can stand up on pronto. It’s also a great board for those who want to use it for SUP yoga thanks to its relatively clutterless deck pad space.

You can paddle this SUP in a variety of different environments such as small and large lakes, oceans, or even bigger slow-moving rivers. This board would be the perfect pick for those newer paddlers who live by the coast and don’t want the ocean waves to affect their balance too much. 

On-Water Performance

The Isle Pioneer will be one of the more stable inflatable SUPs you will encounter. Its 10’6” frame is a good fit for 85% of the paddlers out there. This is thanks to the board’s 34” width. Most inflatable SUPs can be found within the 30-32” inch width range, which depending on the board can make for more of a learning curve standing up. Thankfully the learning curve is a lot less with this SUP.

This paddle board won’t be winning SUP races due to its wider width mentioned above. But unlike some other “Stability focused” boards I’ve paddled it’s not a complete dog in the water and with proper paddling technique you should be able to keep up with most inflatable SUPs out there

This is also a pretty easy board to turn and even try out more advanced maneuvers like pivot turns thanks to the SUP’s width being more consistent throughout the board. Boards that are more tapered towards the nose and tail tend to be more difficult to try these things as you have less width to work with. 

Board Features and Design

The Pioneer 2.0 reminds me a bit of the Atoll board in its stripped-back approach of just putting what you need on the board. It comes with 5 rows of deck bungees (3 in the front and 2 in the rear), a clean embossed deck pad, a paddle holder, and two little taps at the front of the deck pad for a kayak conversion seat.

I do like the placement of the paddle holder as I find the side of the board is the most convenient area to place the paddle when you are not using it. In my experience, I find smooth embossed deck pads don’t offer as much traction compared to striped or even diamond-grooved deck pads. Although for yoga this style will be easier and more comfortable on your feet.

The package comes with a nylon touring-style fin, a travel bag, a dual action hand pump as well as the leash and carbon hybrid paddle. Out of this package, the talking point would be the carbon hybrid paddle that retails for $165. Most manufacturers within the Pioneers price point will include either an aluminum or fiberglass paddle which would be heavier. So props to Isle for doing this!

Pros

  • One of the best entry boards 
  • The boards stability is great for a variety of different sized paddlers
  • Great quality paddle that is included in the package
  • The board’s construction is keeping pace with where the industry is headed
  • A good board for SUP Yogis

Cons

  • Won’t be the best board for touring
  • The 34” width can be awkward for your paddle stroke if you are a smaller paddler

Isle Explorer 2.0 (Performance SUP) 

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 11’6” X 32” X 6”
  • Board Weight: 24 Lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 300 Lbs
  • Materials: Air-Tech Fusion and cross threaded drop stitch

Total Score: 8/10 (Based on Accumulated Scores Below)

  • On-Water Performance – 8
    • Stability 8
    • Tracking 8
    • Speed 8
    • Maneuverability 7.5
  • SUP Construction – 8
  • Board Features  – 7.8
    • Deck Pad 8
    • D Rings 7
    • Deck Bungees 8
    • Handles 8
  • Accessories – 8
    • Backpack 8
    • Paddle 9
    • Pump 7.5
    • Fins 7.5
  • Set-Up/ Take Down – 8

Who It’s For

The Isle Explorer is marketed for paddlers who want to go on touring excursions. Although we don’t think of this board as your traditional “touring SUP” but rather an all-around board that can be used for some touring capabilities

While it may not be the most stable board in the Isle line-up, beginner paddlers who want a board for longer paddles should do just fine on this SUP as a 32” width is manageable for most beginners starting out.  

On-Water Performance

Compared to boards like the Pioneer, the Explorer gives you better speed and tracking thanks to the extra foot length and the narrower board width. The explorer also comes with a nylon touring fin which will offer a better straight line compared to similarly designed SUPs that have a dolphin fin. In terms of speed the 24 lb board offers ample acceleration and will be one of the better all-around SUPs in terms of glide per stroke

While the Explorer is 2” thinner width-wise compared to the Pioneer it’s not a night and day difference in terms of stability. This is because the Explorer makes up for this with its extra length. An extra foot of length on a paddle board can make up the difference to a slightly thinner width. 

In terms of maneuverability, the Pioneer will definitely have the edge on this SUP due to the Pioneer’s stockier but shorter build.  Although chances are if you are seriously looking at the Explorer maneuverability is a bit further from your mind. 

To make the board slightly more maneuverable, you can always swap out the touring fin that comes with the board and put in a dolphin fin. Comparatively, it’s still a functional turner compared to other 11’6” boards that feature longer, more prominent side fins

Board Features and Design

The Explorer 2.0, much like many of the other Isle boards has a relatively simple design with 3 rows of bungee deck webbing in the front and 2 in the back which is a usable number. Especially for longer day touring excursions where you need room to store items on both the front and rear of the deck. 

The deck pad is slightly different here as you get 2 different textures of deck paddling. The smooth embossed part is in the middle and then it’s followed by diamond-grooved deck padding towards the back. 

This is for folks who want some extra grip in the back for gear or their foot positions. In my experience, the diamond-grooved deck padding is usually the grippiest. Although I would add a kick pad to the back to help kick the nose out for intermediate paddlers who want to do those pivot turns

Another noteworthy feature on this board is the 4 free D rings in the middle of the board. This gives you a bit more versatility in that you can use them for a kayak seat (has to be from somewhere else) or even hook a hard cooler to the back of the board. 

Pros

  • Glides well in the water
  • Tracks well thanks to the length and included fin
  • This SUP can be used for a lot of different things
  • Diamond Grooved deck padding in the back is a good step
  • Paddle included is the right choice and good value

Cons

  • No stomp pad
  • Some of the D rings are plastic which can degrade over time or snap

Isle Switch Kayak + SUP (Kayak Hybrid SUP) 

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 11’6” X 35.5” X 6”
  • Board Weight: 19 Lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 425 Lbs
  • Materials: Air-Tech Fusion and cross threaded drop stitch with 3 Stringers

Who It’s For

Out of all the inflatable Isle paddle boards, currently, this is the one turning the most heads. The Isle Switch is marketed as a 2+1 kayak/SUP hybrid paddle board. In the past, I’ve only found one or two boards to be good hybrids. The main problem is, that the kayak conversion seats can be uncomfortable, especially for people like me with back pain.

Isle tackled this SUP a bit differently. They raised the seat up with an inflatable pad as well as added a footrest. This takes the pressure off of your arms and allows you to transfer more of that energy into your core which will allow you to paddle longer at a better clip. In fact this SUP has won a lot of awards in 2022 as one of the best paddle crafts out there

On-Water Performance

Despite the wider length the Switch actually performs very well in our on-water tests. Especially for a board that features a wider 35.5” width. This is where the talents of Mr. Jimmy Blakeny come in. 

If you look at the board from the tip you could almost say that it has a bit more of a sit-on-top kayak shape than a SUP shape. It has a narrow pointed nose that fills out to a wide body and tail. This design actually made this SUP perform very well in tracking and speed tests despite its wider width.

This board would probably be the ideal pick for SUP fishermen thanks to its elongated frame. It takes a bit of getting used to casting from a SUP so you want a board that is as wide as possible to ease the learning curve. The added width also will help you feel more secure against uncertain movements like reeling in your catch or going through some chop. 

So how does this do in the kayak setup? 

Well pretty good! For one, you can choose where to place the kayak seat and footrest just about anywhere on the board. This is thanks to its patent-pending Isle- Link loop system on the sides of the board. When in kayak mode the board actually tracks very well. In fact, it performed better than many inflatable kayaks I’ve tested from our sister site Inflatable Kayak Authority

I would actually choose this board as the touring/ camping SUP out of the Isle lineup all due to the versatility that this SUP features

Board Features and Design

If there was a board on Isle’s list to rant and rave features about it would be this one. The Isle-Link connection system really is a game changer, not just with this SUP but with inflatable paddle boards in general

These fabric loops allow you to clip just about whatever you need onto the paddle board. More importantly, they can be exactly where you want them and you can place them in a position that is best suited for your height and body type. 

You can attach just about anything to this SUP- Kayak Hybrid. Anything from the included kayak seat and leg rests a second kayak seat, a cooler, strap-in additional dry bags, or camping gear for touring.

On top of all this package is only 19 lbs! This particular package is able to accomplish this thanks to its single layering of PVC with cross-threaded drop stitching material. It also features 3 stringers that run the length of the board on the top and bottom to further keep the board’s rigidity under loads. This allows the board to have its 425 maximum capacity designation. 

Pros

  • One of the best Kayak / SUP hybrids in existence
  • Lots of gear including the kayak set-up included
  • Extraordinarily lightweight for its size
  • Isle Link connection system is a game changer
  • The way the kayak seat is set up is more comfortable than most kayak setups for SUPs

Cons

  • I do wish they included a higher quality paddle then an aluminum one
  • Some folks may find it to be a bit pricey for a SUP- Kayak hybrid

Isle Sportsman 11’6” (Fishing Pick)

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 11’6” X 36” X 6”
  • Board Weight: 27.6 Lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 350 Lbs
  • Materials: Air-Tech Fusion and cross threaded drop stitch

Who It’s For

The Isle Sportsman is marketed towards the fishing enthusiast and has accessories that reflect as such. It’s wider 36” profile that stays consistent throughout much of the board makes this a very stable platform to perfect your cast while standing on this SUP

The SUP provides a big clutter-free platform to work on. You can bring all the gear you need such as tackle boxes, and coolers thanks to its 3 and 2-row bungee system. What’s more, is that this SUP has Scotty Mount holders to provide you with a whole world of customization. 

This SUP isn’t just for fishermen though. It can be used for beginners, taller/ bigger folks, or even people who want a multi-person/ pet SUP to paddle around with. 

On-Water Performance

The Sportsman package is built for primarily one thing. That’s to be a super stable board on the water. 

The 11’6” frame coupled with the 36” width allows this board to keep stable and counter the quick/ jerky movements you make when you are casting or reeling in a fish. It’s also a very stable SUP that will keep you upright even when faced with waves and wake from boats. 

In terms of tracking and speed, it won’t be the best all-around board for that. But we will give it a break as this performance factor is usually not the first thing fishermen and beginner/ family paddlers are worried about anyway. 

The Sportsman keeps its planning hull while the majority of the ISUP industry is shifting away from that style nose. The wider nose helps keep the SUP more stable but won’t help the board with track or speed. In my experience, wide planning hulls usually plow the water which adds more resistance to the SUP while paddling. 

Board Features and Design

The board has several strategically placed accessories that allow it to be a handy fishing tool. Perhaps the most important thing to note is the board’s 3 Scotty mounts. These Scotty mounts allows you to add rod holders, fishing GPS’s etc. You can take a look at the Scotty Mount website to get some ideas as to what you can mount on the SUP. 

New for 2022 the Isle Sportsman features fabric lashes near the top middle part of the deck padding for a kayak conversion seat. There are also D rings at the back for those conversion seats that have 4 attachment points. 

Pros

  • Great SUP for families, children, and dogs to come aboard
  • Features Scotty Mounts which can transform your SUP into the ultimate fish stalker
  • The wide dimensions allow the board to feel steady while casting
  • Ample room to stow away fishing gear under bungee deck webbing
  • Has a paddle holder which allows you to securely hold your paddle while casting

Cons

  • Won’t be the quickest SUP out there due to wider stature
  • Not a big fan of the side bite fins, in my experience they do nothing but take up space and bend when rolled up
  • Not the best SUP Yoga board because of the Scotty Mounts in the way

Isle Grom (Kids/ Small Paddlers Pick)

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 8’6” X 28” X 6”
  • Board Weight: 18.6 Lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 145 Lbs
  • Materials: Air-Tech Fusion and cross threaded drop stitch

Who It’s For

The Isle Grom is made primarily for kids! There is often that awkward stage where your kids grow up to become independent and want to paddle their own boards. Although to be fair I’d like to have my own board to paddle to! 

The Grom is ideal for kids or even smaller adults who want a maneuverable board that feels comfortable for their smaller size. The good thing with this SUP is that it includes all the features that all the adult style boards have including 5 rows for deck bungees, a paddle holder, a removable US Fin box fin and 3 handles

On-Water Performance

The Grom will be the best in the list for maneuverability thanks to its considerably shorter length compared to the rest of the Isle lineup. Thankfully it won’t be too squiggly in the water thanks to the inclusion of the center dolphin fin which helps the board track in a straighter line. 

Looking at the product description rating boxes for each activity I think Isle does overestimate some of the metrics for this particular SUP. For one, its shorter length will not make it a good touring SUP. Then again I know very few kids who actually paddle their own boards on longer 4-5 hour excursions. 

It should also be noted that this SUP should NOT be used as a multi-person SUP. For one it only has a 145 lb maximum capacity so even putting a smaller adult on here with a child will make the board clumsy and cumbersome to paddle. 

Board Features and Design

As Isle puts it the Grom is the mini version of the Pioneer for kids and smaller adults. As mentioned above it has the same features as many of the other Isle boards which I believe is a good thing. Kids like to have things meant for them that are similar to what their parents have so it’s a good move on Isles’s part to include those. 

When comparing the Isle to our Best Kids SUPs, the Grom has a lower maximum capacity than many of the picks on that list. While not a complete deal breaker you have to wonder how many years your kid will be paddling the Grom until having to upgrade to a bigger SUP. 

Thankfully what Isle did do well is include all of the same accessories that you would get with the Pioneer, Explorer, etc. This SUP includes the carry bag, travel paddle, dolphin fin pump, hose and ankle leash. All of this is enough to get your kid started on their own board

Pros

  • The board does not strip down any of the features compared to Isle’s other SUPs
  • The board will be very maneuverable and good in tighter sections
  • Includes bag, paddle, pump, fin, ankle leash
  • Big expansive deck pad for kids to have grip almost anywhere on the board

Cons

  • The bungees may get in the way of your kid’s feet when they are roaming the board
  • Board should have a higher maximum capacity for growing kids
  • I feel Isle could have made this board more lightweight, especially considering the Switch only weighs 19 lbs

Isle Megalodon 2.0 (Multi Person Pick)

Specifications

BoardDimensionsBoard WeightMax CapacityMaterial
Megalodon 12’12’ X 45” X 8”34 Lbs650 LbsMilitary Grade PVC
Megalodon 15’15’ X 56” X 8”50 Lbs1050 LbsMilitary Grade PVC

Who It’s For

The Isle Megalodon series is meant for families that want to paddle together on the same board! There are two versions of this series, the 12’ and the 15’ series depending on how many people you want to bring with you.

These Multi-Person boards are also a great way to start team-building exercises and can be a great addition to summer camps that are by the lake. It should be noted though that because of the bigger thickness these boards can be more prone to being bullied by winds and tides. So in my opinion I’d limit the use of these to calm days on the lake. 

On-Water Performance

Both the 15’ and 12’ versions truly excel at one thing, which is stability. Because of the 45” and 56” widths of the Megalodon paddle boards, you will need multiple people on there to efficiently paddle this behemoth. Although these can also be used as a platform that stays anchored that allows kids to jump off of. Or you can even place a chair on the board and relax in the sun’s rays. 

In terms of pure paddling purposes, you will all need to learn to work together and paddle in unison. Especially when it comes to maneuvering the board or turning it around. In terms of tracking performance, the wider frame of both SUPs won’t do you any favors.

The good news is the Megalodon series has 5 fins, the bad news is that 4 of them are small 2” side bite fins, which in my experience do little for the board. So essentially the SUP is relying on that center fin to help with tracking. This means paddling in unison becomes even more important than ever. 

Board Features and Design

The Megalodon features some of the same stripped-back features that most Isle boards have but in different areas to better suit the board’s usability. For one This series of SUP features 8 sets of handles which allow you to carry the board in different places, This would be an especially handy feature for kids who want to carry the SUP to the water. 

Unlike some of the other Isle SUPs, this particular model has stripped the back rows of bungee deck webbing to allow more people to stand on the board. This is probably a smart move as many people underestimate how easy it is to have your feet tangled in deck webbing. 

This series has also stripped back some of the accessories as there is no carry bag, or ankle leash. What the package does come with is 2 carbon hybrid paddles, the center fin, and a hand pump. Although if I were you I would get an electric pump to pump this behemoth up. Trust me, you will thank me later!

I personally would have liked to see a carry bag included as it would help keep all of your paddling-related stuff together instead of having to have different people remember to bring different items like the fin, paddles, pump, etc. Isle does sell a roll-out bag specifically for the Megalodon but its sold separately. 

Pros

  • Very stable on the water and can hold a minimum of 4 people standing
  • Well throughout deck design which has a lot of roaming room
  • Comes with 2 carbon hybrid paddles which is a good addition
  • 8 handles allow this board to be easily carried to shore

Cons

  • Takes some time to get used to paddling in unison
  • No bag that comes with package
  • The Side bite fins are attached which takes up folding room and don’t do much performance wise. 

Isle SUP Accessories

Isle has a good amount of available accessories that you can use to make your life a bit easier whether you are pumping, transporting, or storing your SUP. Some of these accessories include 

  • Full Carbon Paddles
  • Kayak- SUP Paddle
  • Isle Custom Electric Pump
  • Travel Bag
  • Cloud Kayak Seat
  • Cloud Kayak Foot Brace
  • Center Fins
  • Cooler Backpack
  • Day Carrying Bags
  • MTI Inflatable life jacket
  • Megalodon Rolling Travel Bag
  • Board Storage Rack

Isle may not have much in the way of gizmos and gadgets to attach to the paddle board but it does carry a good amount of accessories that can help make your life easier. 

Isle has recently added their own electric pump to the mix, following the steps of manufacturers like Nixy and iRocker. Although this specific pump can only be used for inflation purposes only. You don’t have a deflate option which is actually a nice feature to have when you want to suck as much of the air out as possible for folding purposes. 

One of the things that I feel Isle may be missing out on is packaging their kayak paddle, seat, and foot brace together. This would allow paddlers a chance to transform their own paddle board into a more comfortable kayak hybrid package. Having an uplifted seat with a foot brace is a game changer because this setup takes a lot of strain off of your lower back.

Isle Customer Service

Out of a lot of the ISUP companies I’ve reviewed, Isle has some of the best customer service in the game. Especially when I look at 3rd party customer reviews (reviews not on the Isle website. As of the time of writing Isle has a 9.9 Trust Score on Trust Pilot based on 2288 reviews. 

The brand also features a 4.5/5-star review on its Facebook page based on 385 reviews.

Looking on Reddit, I’ve read a few comments about customers enjoying their SUP for well over 5 years. 

Keep in mind this is when ISUP technology was not as lightweight and strong as it is today. As of the last year Isle has changed their PVC to a fusion process (machine pressing multiple layers of PVC into one) and a X-patterned drop stitching which helps make the SUP more rigid and stronger. 

Isle Warranty and Returns Info

Isle feature a 2-year warranty and a 60-day money-back guarantee. The warranty is about the standard for what ISUPs would normally be while the 60-day return is longer than the standard 30 day that most legitimate ISUP companies have. 

One of the things you should note though is that ISLE has a 20 % restocking fee per item, so be mindful of that charge beforehand. 

The Isle Warranty does not cover misuse and damage from external elements like the sun, wear and tear, as well as external damage from collisions against hard or sharp objects. This is pretty standard though as most ISUP manufacturers have this listed as a warranty exception. 

Where to Buy Isle Paddle Boards

The best place to buy Isle ISUPs is from the Isle website. Also keep a look out for older product lines that go on clearance or on sale which can be found in the Isle Clearance section. This usually covers both older models as well as products that go on sale. 

You can also find Isle Paddle Boards on Amazon as they have their own storefront there. 

If you are outside of the USA, Isle also has shipping and distribution to Europe, The UK and Canada. 

Similar Manufacturers

Below are a few manufacturers that are similar to Isle. 

Gili Paddle Boards

Gili Sports are some of the first environmentally conscious ISUP companies that donate a portion of each sale to various sea charities. They make lineups similar to Isle in that they have wider SUPs, all-around touring style SUPs, fishing, and beginner paddle boards as well as Multi-Person paddle boards. Gili has not been around as long as Isle but they get good reviews from customers and SUP reviewers alike. 

iRocker

iRocker is one of the big dogs alongside Isle that got onto the Inflatable paddle board craze. iRocker has a similar distribution level as Isle except it reaches a few more countries. iRocker focuses a bit more on more slender SUPs although they still have wider SUPs like the Blackfin XL, Model X, and the iRocker Cruiser that will fit the bill for beginner paddlers. 

FAQ’s

Below are some common FAQs we get about Isle SUPs. 

Are Isle Paddle Boards Worth It?

If you are looking for a stable paddle board that is built well and offers a clean deck pad design then yes, I would say Isle Paddle Boards are worth it. 

What Is The Difference Between 1.0 And 2.0 Models?

The main difference between Isle’s 1.0 and 2.0 models would be the construction. The 2,0 models are now made with fusion layered PVC and cross-threaded (X pattern) Drop stitch which helps make the boards more rigid. 

The new 2.0 boards also come in different color schemes. 

Are Isle Paddle Boards Good For Beginners?

Yes, Isle are great paddle boards for beginners. Many of the Isle SUPS have a wider than normal width which makes them much more stable in the water. These make them great boards to learn paddle boarding on.

What Isle Paddle Board Is Best For Fishing?

The Isle Sportsman is the best Isle paddle board for fishing although I would also say the Switch is a close second. Both paddle boards offer a wide width which keeps you stable while casting and reeling in your catch. 

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