What to Bring for a Day of Stand Up Paddle Boarding

paddle board trip

You’re ready for a day out on your SUP—what should you pack for the best possible experience? Here are some tips to help you plan.  

What should you wear paddle boarding? 

Dress with the elements in mind and assume that you’ll get wet. A good rule of thumb is to dress for the water temperature rather than the air temperature. The air may feel balmy, but the water could be freezing cold.  

In warmer temperatures, you can wear a swimsuit and/or board shorts. When it’s cold, you’ll want a neoprene wetsuit and insulating accessories made of quick-drying wool or synthetic material. Wear water shoes or strap-on sandals to protect your feet from rocks and debris. 

Sun Protection 

You’re at particular risk of sun exposure when you paddle board due to the reflection of the sun off the water. Be sure to wear sunscreen and reapply throughout your trip. We also recommend a hat, sunglasses, and a rash guard or other UV protective shirt. 

What equipment do you need for paddle boarding? 

Obviously you’ll need your paddle board and paddle, but what other gear should you have for a day of paddle boarding? 

First off, you should always pack these safety essentials: 

  • Personal Flotation Device (PFD) 
  • Safety whistle (required by the Coast Guard, and good for emergency situations) 
  • Water bottle or reservoir 
  • Waterproof flashlight or headlamp (if there’s ANY chance you’ll be out after dark) 

SUP Leash 

Another essential piece of safety equipment, the SUP leash is a simple cord that keeps you tethered to your board with an ankle strap. The leash keeps you from losing your board if you fall into the water and protects those around you. If you’re paddle boarding in whitewater, you should use a Quick Release leash 

We recommend: 

11’ Coiled Paddle Board Leash 

The durable urethane cord of this leash is coiled so it will not drag in the water or get easily tangled. It has an easy-release padded 2” cuff and over-molded ends for extra strength. 

Shop 11’ Coiled Paddle Board Leash

SUP Fin 

If you don’t already have one, you’ll need an SUP fin to keep your board moving forward instead of spinning sideways when you paddle.  

We recommend: 

9” Dolphin Longboard and SUP Fin 

Compatible with all US-style SUP and longboard center fin boxes, this durable fiberglass reinforced nylon fin is suited for a variety of conditions from surf to flat water.  

Shop 9” Dolphin Longboard and SUP Fin

Paddle Board Bag 

A paddle board bag is the easiest way to protect your board from dings and scratches when you transport it to the beach or the lake. It’s also great for storage during the off season.  

We recommend:  

14’ Paddleboard Day Bag 

Designed for standard SUPs of all sizes, this nylon padded board bag has a 5mm padded shoulder strap and handle webbing at the nose, tail, and mid-rail. For inflatable boards, try our Rolling Board Bag  

Shop 14’ Paddleboard Day Bag