Thurso Surf Waterwalker 132 Review

This article may contain affiliate links to which we are compensated if you buy. This comes at no extra cost to you.

Last Updated:

In this Thurso Surf Waterwalker 132 Review we go through all the ins and outs of this board through my testing in mid-March at the Nikomekl River. 

I put the board through its paces as I tested the stability, tracking, maneuverability and got a feel for the speed potential of the board. Through these tests, I also got a handle on the ideal audience for this board and some of the features that make the board unique. 

Let’s Dive in! 

What Did We Think of the Thursosurf Water Walker 132? 

These were our thoughts

  • The board offered good stability, especially when paddled after the Expedition 150 Review which you can read here.  
  • The board’s rounded nose offers good stability for paddlers of most levels all the while still providing good glide thanks to its rocker.
  • We found the board to be highly responsive and maneuverable in our on-water tests that included reverse sweep strokes, reverse side paddles, etc. 
  • We appreciated that the Board came with an electric pump in the package while maintaining a good affordable price point.

Thurso Surf Waterwalker 132 Paddle Board Review Ratings

Below is how we rated the Waterwalker 132. We take the averages of the below ratings and put them into a total score. We do this to show you our rating systems clearly and pick what matters most to you. 

Total Score: 8.1/10 (Average of Below Scores)

(Click the links in the scores below to jump to each section)

Pros

  • Has good stability: Both a beginner paddler or an intermediate paddler can feel comfortable with
  • Great Maneuverability: Specifically for an 11’ paddle board
  • Good Rigidity: Despite still using knitted construction the board felt very firm in the water. I believe the carbon side rails helped aid with this
  • Beautiful Design: Offers a fantastic color mixture all the while keeping the classic wood print.
  • 2 Types of Deck Padding: I found the striped deck padding in the front to be grippy on the feet while the diamond-grooved deck padding in the back is ideal for more advanced maneuvers such as pivot turns. Etc. 
  • Comes with an Electric Pump!: The package comes with an electric pump in a protective case to stash all the related contents. 
  • I like the Pouch that comes with the SUP: The pouch allows you to stash all of your odds and ends more easily without everything flying in the bag.
  • The Paddle is impressive: While it may not be my favorite SUP paddle it is up there! I like the feel of the rubber handle especially as it gives you solid grip when doing your strokes.

Cons

  • The Fins take a while to install: When I first got this board, I had trouble with the click-in fin system. It turns outI just needed to remove one of the rubber nubs. The side fins also take longer to install as you have to tighten 2 screws on each side of the fin.
  • Handle can be uncomfortable carrying the board: Especially for longer distances. Although there is neoprene on the bottom of the handle the nylon at the top digs into your hand a bit.

Who Should Be Using the Thursosurf Waterwalker 132?

The Waterwalker is ideal for both beginners and intermediate paddlers alike. Is it the most stable paddle board on earth? No, but the board does the job just fine and falls within our median range for stability among all-around boards. 

You can use the board for a wide variety of different purposes such as day paddling, a couple of hours on the board, or even an excursion. However, for pure multi-day excursions, I would choose the Expedition 150. 

You can use this board in calm lakes, larger rivers, and coastal conditions. Infact in my testing I paddled this board in a tidal river where the tide was coming in and the board was not too much of a struggle to paddle. 

What SUP Activities can the Thursosurf Waterwalker 132 be used for?

Being an 11’ All Around board the Waterwalker 132 can be used for a wide variety of different purposes. 

A Board to Learn on

You can use this as your first paddle board and get enjoyment out of it for years and years. It is a bit more on the narrower end of the spectrum though. While I felt perfectly stable on it (this is after I tested the thinner Expedition 150). A complete beginner may need a few runs to get comfortable on this board. 

You can read our in-depth How to Paddle Board Guide specifically written for beginners. 

Recreational Paddling

For those who are new, the Waterwalker 132 is a great multi-purpose board for anything from day padding to letting the kids jump on and off the board at the local lake.

Family Paddling 

When paddling this board you can take smaller family members onboard thanks to the SUP’s 330 lb maximum capacity. It’s perfectly acceptable to take a small child or dog onboard and have them set at the front. 

While you can have 2 adults on this board, it will start to decrease the on-water performance. If you are looking for a board with a higher capacity from Thursosurf check out the Max Multi Purpose ISUP which holds 370 lbs max capacity

Day Paddling

The Waterwalker 132 is also good for longer day paddling trips where you are on the water for a few hours. Its 5 rows of deck bungees allow you to stash some gear while on your day trip such as coolers, dry bags, backpacks, etc. 

Thursosurf Water Walker 132 On-Water Performance

We found that the Water Walker 132 offered a good balance of the 4 on-water metrics that we measured through some simple tests. 

Rating FactorScoreAverage SUP Score
(All Around Boards)
Total On-Water Score8.4 /108.0
Stability Score8 /108.3
Tracking Score8 /107.8
Speed Score8.5 /107.7
Manueverability Score9 /108.1
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

Stability

The Waterwalker 132 felt stable doing a bunch of the on-water tests. But perhaps the most important factor for beginners is getting from your knees to the standing position. When getting up on the board I did not feel a lot of wobble and it felt like a smooth straightforward transition. 

I believe a lot of this is due to the width of the nose which provides a more gentle contouring to the tip compared to how many all-around boards are made now where they have more of a pointed nose. 

Paddling forward the board also felt steady, even when I was adding a bit more power into my strokes. 

The only part where I felt a bit of “wobble” was when I was doing some reverse side paddles. I had one moment I needed to correct to not fall into the drink but I credit that more to the movement of the tide as when I was testing this the water was moving inwards. More on this in the maneuverability section. 

Tracking

In my experience, the board had the tracking ability of what you would expect from a mid-tier all-around board at about 6 strokes per side before you have to correct. This is about average with the ratings which we have accumulated over the years for 11’ all-around paddle boards.

Tracking FactorPaddle StrokesAverage Paddle Strokes (All Around)
Paddle Strokes
To Keep Straight Course
65.8
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

If you look at the On-Water video above you will notice that the strokes are not exactly even. This is due to the movement of the tide which perhaps flawed the test a bit. However, I did try my best to go with the tide so that I could get as accurate a reading as possible. 

Speed

Unfortunately on my first run out with this board, I was not properly able to put a number to speed because of the tidal conditions. So for this, I had to go by feel. Overall the board felt like it had decent glide but other All Around boards have quicker acceleration. A bit part of this is because of the board’s 25.3 weight. Which may drag the acceleration down a bit from a stand still. 

We think part of the slower acceleration is due the fact that Thursosurf still uses knitted drop stitch which requires more threads and makes the board heavier compared to SUPs that now use woven drop stitch materials. 

One of the advantages of slightly heavier boards is that you get more momentum with your glide once you get going. After getting into the momentum the board gilded well.

We also liked the rocker profile (nose curved up from the water) this board had which kept the rounded nose out of the water. Some lesser-made SUPs with rounded noses tend to have no rocker and aqua plane which can reduce your speed in the water. Thankfully this is no problem for the Water Walker 132. 

Maneuverability

The Waterwalker 132 offered very good maneuverability scores which were slightly below the averages of other All Around boards. 

Manueverability
Factor
Paddle StrokesAverage Paddle Strokes (All Around SUP’s)
Paddle Strokes for Reverse Sweep Stroke44.2
Paddle Strokes for Reverse Side Paddles1213.3
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

It did a reverse sweep stroke (see video above as to what this looks like) in 4 strokes which is slightly below the average of 4.19 average score. 

The board did reverse side paddles in 12 strokes which is slightly below the average of the 12.88 score we have. This is even more impressive because it’s an 11’ all around board which makes it one of the more maneuverable 11’ SUPs we have tried so far. 

Once again these will be tested in calmer conditions as for the first time around we had to do this in moving water of the Nikomekl tidal river. 

Water Walker 132 Stats Deconstructed

  • Type of Board: Recreational
  • Length: 11
  • Width: 32″
  • Thickness: 6″
  • Volume: 300 L
  • Weight: 25.3 lbs
  • Maximum Capacity: 330 Lbs

The Water Walker 132 features A dual layer fusion outer layer with a knitted drop stitch core which explains why this board may be considered on the medium-heavy end by today’s standards. Let me explain…

Rating FactorScoreAverage Score (All Around)
Construction Score8 /108.3
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

Many SUP Manufacturers have moved to woven drop stitching which uses stronger threads of drop stitching but fewer materials making it just as durable all the while saving weight. Most reputable SUP manufacturers use dual-layer fusions which is 2 layers of PVC heat pressed together to create a stronger bond. This process requires less glue compared to dual-layer or triple-layer PVC layering. 

The Water Walker 132 also features carbon side rails which serves for 2 different purposes. One, it adds an extra layer to the most sensitive area of the SUP which are the side rails. Two, is adds extra rigidity when you stand on the board which gives it less bend. 

There’s a lot of debate in the SUP community as to whether these types of carbon material side rails do anything in the way of rigidity. In many SUPs we have tested I believe it does and I think they play at minimum a small part in making the board more rigid. 

Waterwalker 132 Board Profile

Compared with the Expedition 150

The Waterwalker 132 has a narrow profile with a rounded nose that creates that extra bit of stability for the board. The rounded nose does not get in the way of the board’s glide though. I found the rocker profile to be slightly more uplifted compared to some other all around boards. 

Interestingly enough, when I had the Expedition 150 and the Water Walker 132 side by side the tail was almost the same measurement. This gives the Water Walker a bit less drag as there is less surface area passing through compared to boards that have wider tails like the Tranquility SUP which is meant more for stability for SUP Yoga. 

Board Features (Whats On Deck)

The Thursosurf compared to some other SUP’s won’t have as many doo-hickies onboard such as action mounts extra handles etc. Although they still have some good innovations which we will go through below. 

Rating FactorScoreAverage SUP Score
(All Around Boards)
Board Features Score7.88.1
Deck Pad Score9 /108.3
D-Rings Score8 /108
Deck Webbing Score8 /108.1
Action Mounts Score7 /107.8
Handle Score7 /108.2
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

I would say Thursosurf would be more on the minimalist spectrum of onboard accessories. This is neither a good nor bad thing as this just comes down to paddler preference. 

Water Walker 132 Deck Pad

When testing this board in March I had surf booties on so I did not get the complete feel of the deck pad. But I can say if you have SUP shoes on it’s a more grippy surface as opposed to if you were just on bare feet or sandals. Surf Booties also add extra comfort for yout feet too!

I liked the way the Thursosurf presented the deckpad in terms of styling and usefulness. The deckpad has 2 different types of textures to it. The striped and the diamond grooved on the back.

This is smart placement as the diamond-grooved deck padding offers more grip in the back for when you want to do pivot turns or simply stand on the tail to get better turning out of the board. 

Water Walker 132 D-Rings

There are 15 total D rings on the Water Walker 132 with most being used up with the deck bungee arrangement or the Ankle Leash. There are 4 free D rings for attaching a kayak seat (sold separately) or a shoulder strap to help carry the SUP. 

You could also use them to strap down a hard cooler on the last row of free D rings if you using this board as a DIY fishing SUP. 

Water Walker 132 Deck Bungees

There are 5 rows of bungee deck webbing on the Water Walker SUP. 3 in front and 2 in the back. This is starting to become a standard arrangement among mid-tier SUP’s these days. 

The front 3 rows of deck bungees are more widely spaced out which is where your bigger items would go such as backpacks, dry bags, etc. I like to put items I need access to more often in the front and things I don’t use as often in the back rows

The back rows of bungee deck webbing are closer together which would house smaller items such as water bottles speakers etc. I found this compared to other SUPs the deck webbing in the back is a lot smaller compared to arrangements from other all-around boards like Gili and iRocker.

Mounts

While there is one camera mount on the board’s nose there are no others to be found on the board. We like the camera mount and would rather have one onboard than not. However, We felt that ThursoSurf could have replaced it with an action mount to give the board more versatility.

With action mounts, you can add more accessories onboard such as:

  • Fishing Rod Holders
  • Camera Mounts
  • Drink Holders
  • House small speakers
  • Camera Holders

As opposed to just limiting the board to an action camera station.

Thursosurf Handles

The Water Walker 132 offers 3 sets of handles onboard with the middle being a combination of neoprene on the bottom and nylon at the top for the logo. I found the nylon part to be too prominent as I found it dug into my hands. Especially when I was walking more than 50 meters. I feel like Thursosurf could have used the nylon embroidering for their logo and not the top half of the entire handle.

There are also handles at the front and rear of the board that are used more for guiding the board in the water or carrying it with two people. These handles don’t need to have as much of this padding as less weight will be on your hands when carrying the board. 

Thurso Surf Paddle Holder

One of my favorite on-board features with the Water Walker 132 is the locations of the paddle holders. It has 4 sets of velcro tabs on each side keeping the paddle out of the way for you to go full savasna onboard. 

I found these paddle holders to be especially helpful when it came to carrying the board. Often I have to juggle a bunch of items such as water bottles, extra accessories, a paddle, and not to mention the paddle board! 

When you can strap your paddle in the paddle holder it makes things so much easier to carry and you don’t have to worry about the paddle sliding out from the deck bungees. 

Water Walker 132 Accessories Explained

Thurso Surf offers solid accessories for a board of its price point. I found the package to be very well thought out as we detail below. 

Rating FactorScoreAverage SUP Score
(All Around Boards)
Accessories Score8.4 /107.9
Backpack Score7.5 /108.1
Paddle Score8.5 /107.8
Pump Score9 /107.6
Fin Score8.5 /108.1
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

Backpack

There are things I liked and disliked about the bag. Starting with the things I liked:

  • The bag is very lightweight
  • It included wheels
  • Has a front pocket
  • Can fit all the accessories quite easily

On the plus side, the backpack is very lightweight which is good news for minimalists out there who don’t want to lug around a heavy backpack to accompany all the contents inside. 

I did appreciate that Thuso Surf included wheels on their bags as not all SUP’s in this price range do. There is also some room in the front pocket which can fit small PFDs or even the pouch that comes with the SUP (we will detail that later). 

Most importantly the bag can fit all the contents quite easily, even with an improper fold. This is key as there is nothing I hate more than a paddle board that does not fit into the bag. 

On Top of that, you also have to try and fit all the accessories in. Anybody who has bought any of those Amazon boards is probably getting PTSD reading this. 

Some things I disliked about the bag were:

  • Not enough smaller pockets
  • I felt that there was not enough padding on the backpack straps
  • The bag does not open up all the way

Probably the main thing I was not a fan of was how skimpy the backpack straps were. This won’t be the ideal bag for hiking as they will start to dig into your shoulders. However, the wheels do make up for it as long as you are on relatively leveled ground. 

3 Piece Carbon Hybrid Paddle

When SUP companies say carbon hybrid a lot of the time they mean the shaft is made of carbon hybrid material and the blade is made of a nylon plastic sort of material. I do like it when the blade is made of carbon or fiberglass as well but having said that…

I was impressed with the paddle that Thurso Surf provided with their SUP. It is one of the lighter carbon hybrid paddles and it felt good in the hands while doing a variety of different strokes. 

I particularly liked the rubber on the handle which contours the hand nicely and also gives you a bit extra grip when you are dperforming those harder strokes. The carbon also felt nice and smooth in my hands with no attachment pieces getting in the way of my hand placement. 

Another thing I did appreciate was the fact that the paddle was simple enough to put together. I didn’t have to force anything or tighten any latches before going out. I’ve had this problem with some other SUP manufacturers in the past where latches are too loose, or handles have to be forced in. Thankfully no tools were needed to be involved with either of ThursoSurf’s boards that were sent here. 

The paddle is adjustable for most folks and can go from 71” to 87” which covers a good range of paddlers and their different height ranges. 

Thurso Surf Pouch

One of my favorite accessories from an organizational perspective was the pouch that the Water Walker provides. It acts as a nice organizational accessory where loose ends don’t get lost in the bag. The pouch can also fit in the front pocket. 

Packaged inside the pouch are the leash, touring fin, and repair kit which has a brush, patches, and extra rubber nubs for the click-in fin system. 

Thurso Surf Electric Pump

One thing I always appreciate is when the SUP manufacturer includes an electric pump in their package. It makes the setting up process much easier as well as it makes taking the SUP down an easier process as well. 

Scroll to Set up / Take Down to see what the process is for setting up the Thurso Surf Water Walker

The pump has 4 buttons, and 2 valves and is powered by your car’s cigarette lighter. It’s pretty simple to use with a power button that turns the device on and off, a PSI/Bar button, and a plus/minus button to control the PSI/ Bar rating to what you want it to be. 

I was pretty happy using this pump as it did the job in about the time that the Outdoor Master and iRocker pumps took to inflate the board. I will be timing all the different electric pumps at some point so keep your eyes peeled for that piece of content coming up!

The deflate valve is also a welcome addition (and surprisingly a lot of electric pumps still don’t have them!). The deflate option helps take all the air out of the board making it 100 X easier to fold and put back into the bag. 

The electric pump has a max PSI pressure of 20, is 12 volt,s and has a flow rate of 360/ 78 liters a minute 

Water Walker 132 Fin Setup

This board comes with a 3 fin set-up which has two 5” side fins and a 9” center fin. I must say I applaud the quality of the fins that Thursosurf provides as they are made of good-quality plastic. 

The Water Walker series uses a click-in fin system for its center fin which means you just slide the fin in and click it down with a bit of handy dandy force. To take it out you just have to yank it out! What allows the fin the ability to do this is the little rubber nubs that keep the fin safely in place while you are paddling. 

One thing I do want to mention is to remove at least one of the rubber nubs before going out. There was some head-scratching from my end as I was trying to fit it into the fin slot but it didn’t go.  As soon as I removed one of the rubber nubs from the center fin was able to click in with a bit of force. 

The side fins were also interesting and something I have not come across in an ISUP before. You had to use a key to screw the side fins into place which is a bit of a time-consuming process. There are 2 screws on each fin slot so the whole process takes a few minutes. 

In this case, I preferred NIXY’s solution of the screw being attached to the fin and screwing it into the fin slot. 

Leash

The leash was standard and did what it was supposed to do. These days I find myself clipping the leash to my PFD as opposed to my ankle as it feels less in the way while I paddle. 

Thurso Surf Water Walker Set-Up/ Take Down

The set-up and takedown with the Water Walker 132 was relatively straightforward. Luckily enough for you folks, I recorded a video on the exact process I used to set-up and take down this SUP! (See Review Video Above)

The Water Walker 132 is a pretty easy set-up when it comes to inflating the board, made easier thanks to the inclusion of the electric pump! Just plug it into the cigarette lighter, set the PSI, and press power and away it goes! I usually like to start new SUPs at 14 PSI at first and then eventually get them to the 15 PSI range.

Rating FactorScoreAverage Score (All Around)
Set-Up/ Take Down Score8/108.2
Average Score is based on data base of SUP’s we’ve Tested

The set-up the first time I tested this board in the on-water performance tests did admittedly take longer than I had hoped/ expected. This was mostly due to figuring out the fin setup. And when I say figuring out the fin set-up I mean being a typical guy and not wanting to look at instructions 😛 and just figure it out. Thankfully I did after a few minutes delay!

I had a hard time using the click-in center fin system the first time because of the 3 nubs that were in the center fin. This made it harder to attach the fin, after a bit of fiddling I decided to take one of them out, and that made it easier to attach! After that, it was off to the water I went!

The takedown is also pretty simple once you get the setup right. Below is how we took the board down/ folded it up. 

  1. Clean/ Dry the board
  2. Remove the fins
  3. Open the valve and deflate all the air out of the board
  4. Attach the hose to the deflate valve on the electric pump and press power to get all the access air out. This makes folding easier 🙂 
  5. Once completely void of air, start folding the board up starting at the nose and ending at the tail. It may take some folding and unfolding to get the process right in the beginning
  6. Once at the tail do a reverse fold collapsing the fin box inwards. It’s important to make sure that there is no pressure on any of the fin boxes
  7. Use the strap that comes with the board to hold it together, place it in the bag, and then add the other accessories inside. 

About Thurso Surf Paddle Boards

Thurso Surf’s main purpose of being is producing good quality SUPs at affordable price points which is something I believe they have done very well with. 

They use Knitted drop sitch on all of their paddle boards which is strong and dependable although not the most cutting edge materials. I have heard from the owner that they will be moving to woven drop stitch soon though. 

Thurso Surf Warranty

Thurso Surf offers a 2-year warranty on their boards and a 30-day money-back guarantee which is about the standard period for many SUP manufacturers of its price point.

As with most SUP manufacturers, the limited warranty covers manufacturing defects. It does not cover mistreatment or misuse of the board of any kind. 

For returns, much like many other SUP manufacturers, you do have to be the one who pays for the return shipping of the product for it to be properly inspected. 

Where to Buy

You can purchase the Water Walker 132 straight from the Thurso Surf website or go to Amazon.com. 

Thursosurf.com offers distribution in the following places

  • United States
  • Canada
  • EU (European Union)
  • Germany
  • U.K.

Comparable Paddle Boards

Below is a list of comparable paddle boards that in my experience resembled closest to the Water Walker 132.

Atoll 11 Paddle Board

The Atoll 11 is a little bit more like a touring hybrid compared to the Water Walker and in our testing we felt it was the better tracking board. The Thursosurf Water Walker 132 is the more maneuverable board.

 Both are very stable although I give the edge to the Atoll 11 as it is one of the most stable 11’ SUPs I’ve ever paddled. The Atoll 11 lacks the rear deck webbing and paddle holders but does offer a good amount of D Rings throughout the length of the board.

You can see our Full Atoll 11 Paddle Board Review here.

iRocker All Around 11 Ultra SUP

The iRocker is a very similarly set-up board although it offers more on-board accessories and a little bit of extra space with its deck webbing. This is a more compact board that is about 5 lbs lighter weight. However stability-wise we give the edge to the Water Walker 132. 

You can see our Full iRocker All Around 11 Ultra Review here.

Should You Get the Thurso Surf 132 Water Walker? 

We believe the Water Walker is a very solid SUP when it comes to the price-to-value ratio as it includes a lot of good items that make your life easier. The board is also friendly for paddlers of many different skill levels including brand new paddle boarders. 

Below is a list of things that stood out to us:

  • Offered a good blend of On-Water performance metrics
  • The board had good primary (water laying flat in the water) Stability
  • Paddle Holders were a big plus
  • I loved the quality of the fins
  • Big fan of the pouch that was included!

What were some of your favorite things about this SUP? Tell us on our Facebook page!

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

As you found this post useful...

Follow us on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?

Photo of author
Author:
Hey, My name is Derek Lenze and I'm the owner of Inflatable SUP Authority. I've had over 20 years experience with watersports and over 10 years of various paddle boarding experience. My new-found passion is bringing my stand up paddle boaring knowledge in an explainable and actionable way all the while giving you my unbiased takes.