What is stand up paddle board fishing?

If you're coordinated and adventuresome, try stand up paddle board fishing!

If you’re coordinated and adventuresome, try stand up paddle board fishing!

Paddle board may not be a term you commonly use in your daily speech unless, of course, you are a Californian or Hawaiian native. Paddleboarding has reached the mainland, the midwest and east coast. In 2013, approximately two million individuals started paddleboarding.

A twist on this sport includes adding fishing into the mix for the simple answer to what is stand up paddle board fishing? It really is just like it sounds: Standing on a board in the water and fishing.

Some of those who liked fishing from a kayak are making the switch to SUPs. SUPs are light — 35 to 45 pounds — compared to a kayak which can way more than 100 pounds.

The stand up paddle board comes in various sizes and materials and ranges in price from a couple hundred dollars to a few thousand. Some are equipped with underwater LED lighting, which attracts bait in the dark, fly rod holders, thru-hull anchoring, ultra-light carbon fiber paddles and other nifty options. The length varies. The width is approximately 30 inches.


Utilizing this board is a great full body workout. To choose the right one for you, base it on your skill and weight, how you intend to use the equipment and the weather and water conditions you will be using it in.

Board fishing has been around for a long time; however, prior to SUPs, the fishermen would lie prone on the board, not stand up. The earlier boards weren?t equipped to handle a person who was standing and certainly not in areas where there were waves. The current boards are far more stable, wider and designed to accommodate someone who is standing or kneeling.


The benefits of fishing from a board include great visibility — you can see the fish because you are above them. Standing up provides a great vantage point. You can get into shallow areas that you wouldn?t be able to access in a board. Another advantage is the ease of loading and unloading the craft into a vehicle.

According to Tim Romano of Field and Stream, the user must take into consideration the water surface, current and wind. You will be required to fight the elements at some point. Carry an anchor with you and use it when you find the spot where you want to fish. This prevents the board and you from drifting off while fishing.

Line Management

Romano suggests using a spiky mat. It lies on the paddleboard, collecting the fishing line as the fisherman retrieves his fly. The mat keeps the line in place when water washes over the board. It also prevents the wind from tangling the line.  Or a stripping basket can be worn around the waist of the angler. It serves the same function as the mat and some prefer it to the mat.