Peak 11′ Expedition Paddle Board Review
COVID-19 starting to get you down. No need for face masks and social distancing when you’re out on the water so if you’re yet to discover it, paddle boarding might just be the thing for you. With the continual advances in technology and wide choice of affordable paddle board packages and options out there, what are you waiting for?
To get your feet wet, lets take a look at the Peak 11′ Expedition Paddle Board.
Length: 11′ (335 cm)
Width: 32″ (81 cm)
Thickness/Depth: 6″ (15 cm)
Construction: Military Grade PVC – drop-stitch
Weight: 19.5 lbs (9 kg)
User Weight: 275 lbs (125 kg)
Inflation PSI: maximum of 12 psi
Volume: 238 litres
D-rings: 11 well spaced stainless steel D-rings
Paddle: 3-piece aluminium adjustable
Fin: 2+1 detachable 9″ tool less centre fin
Pump: single cylinder dual action high pressure
Leash: coiled ankle leash
Warranty: 12 months
Why Paddle Board
As a recreational activity, paddle boarding offers some tremendous health and fitness benefits ranging from a full body workout engaging many of the core muscles albeit in a low impact way through to improved balance, improvements in endurance and stamina, injury rehabilitation, weight loss and improving our cardiovascular health. It’s an exciting way to unwind and decompress whilst at the same time engaging with nature. As one of the fastest growing water sports globally, if you have access to water then it’s definitely worth giving it a go.
Based in California and founded in 2015 by a team of paddle boarding veterans, Peak Paddle Boards established themselves with an objective of producing the industry’s most stable and reliable inflatable boards capable of offering season after season fun on the water. With stated values of authenticity, design, convenience and exceptional customer service, Peak have positioned themselves to meet the demands of a growing beginner to intermediate paddling market.
With dimensions of 11′ – 32″ – 6″, the Expedition is very much an all-round paddle board that is well suited for recreational paddling, light wave or choppy waters as well as yoga, fishing or paddling with your dog or the kids. It offers ample stability for heavier riders as well as quality tracking and glide owing to it’s tri-fin configuration. As a middle market board, it is very well suited to newbies who are still trying to find their feet on the water as well as more seasoned paddlers who are looking for the ease and convenience that an iSUP offers.Construction – built to what is now becoming an industry standard for quality boards albeit different manufacturers do adopt differing design and construction methodology, Peak manufacture their boards using a drop-stitch and durable military grade PVC material. Drop-stitch construction methods have been around for several years now and are used in a variety of inflatable vessels as well as lifting equipment, floating docks and even aircraft. Made from thousands of intertwined polyester threads to create a core which is then fixed to the outer fabric, this method helps create a rigid waterproof paddling platform that offers unrivalled stability and buoyancy.
The above said, with a recommended inflation rate up to 12 psi, it is not the most durable or rigid iSUP on the market. We would typically look for a board that can be inflated to 15+ psi making it more rigid and stiffer again offering greater buoyancy. A lot depends here on the quality of materials and construction methods used. There is also some give and take when it comes to weight which in part speaks to why the Expedition is one of the lighter boards on the market.
Performance & Suitability
The Expedition is an all-round board that offers a nice ride which is heavily influenced by its design and dimensions. At 11′ in length and with a front rocker (upward curved nose), the board glides well through the water which aids the riders ability
A somewhat standard 6″ depth or thickness for all-round iSUPs these days, the board is also very buoyant which helps it ride above the water line. This is particularly helpful for less experienced or heavier paddlers. From a stability perspective, 32″ wide SUP’s offer a nice stable platform without too much compromise on performance or manoeuvrability. The wider the board the more stable. Too wide though they become cumbersome and difficult to turn or manoeuvre. At 32″, with a little practice, finding your centre on the Expedition won’t prove too challenging at all.
One of the nice features on this board is the 9″ centre fin. A lot of SUP packages come with an 8″ fin so whilst not a great deal of difference, it’s the centre fin that governs the boards ability to track (go in a straight line) through the water. More fin equals a greater ability to hold your line and when coupled with the front rocker, the Expedition performs really well in this regard.
External Board Features
Coming in two distinct colour schemes (Moss and Coral), the Expedition has a clean uncomplicated finish with everything that you will need for recreational paddling. The Brushed EVA Deck Pad which covers in excess of half of the boards surface offers a comfortable ride and aids stability and traction when manoeuvring through the water or if you are simply standing there doing a spot of fishing of striking a yoga pose perhaps.
The 6-point front and 4-point rear Bungee System provides more than enough storage for your cooler, dry bag and others personal belongings and with a total of 11 Stainless Steel D-Rings, you will have ample room to further accessories your board or attach other kit. The Centre Handle makes the board easy to carry as a solo paddler but with the inclusion of both Front and Rear Grab Handles you can make lighter work of it again with a paddle partner. These additional grab handles also serve as useful towing points or a means to secure multiple boards together when doing group yoga or simply lazing around in the sun.
At the rear of the board is a quality Halkey Roberts Inflation Valve which can be locked into position when inflating and deflating your SUP. Rounding out the underside is the striking waved Peak Logo as well as the 9″ Snap-in Centre Fin accompanied by the two smaller PVC side fins.
The vast majority of iSUPs now come complete with all of the necessary accessories that you will need for a complete on and off the water experience.
Carry Bag – while not necessarily a market leader, the Peak carry bag is made from a durable nylon material with more than enough room to carry both your deflated board with all accessories. It can be comfortably carried by either the reinforced carry handle at the top of the bag or by using the 2 well padded backpack straps with secure adjustable waist belt. The bag also contains a separate external pump sleeve as well as a netted side pocket for other small accessories or personal items. Measuring 36″ – 17″ – 12″ it certainly gets the job done. On the next run, it would be nice to see a pair of recessed wheels included which are quite useful for wheeling over longer flat ground.
Paddle – the 3-piece floating adjustable paddle is made from an aluminium alloy with a toughened nylon blade. Whilst not as light and stiff as a carbon shaft paddle, it weighs 2.2 lbs and has an adjustable range of between 65″ to 85″ making it suitable for paddlers of all heights.
Pump – simplistic in design, the dual action single chamber manual pump complete with a high pressure gauge certainly does the job albeit with a bit of pre-paddling execution. For those that have a few extra dollars, we would always recommend investing in an electric pump particularly if you plan on taking to the water on a somewhat regular basis. For more information on some great electric pump options and what to look out for, take a read of our recent Top 5 Electric Pump Picks article to learn more.
Leash – the coiled leash contains a multi-layered Velcro ankle strap for added comfort and security as well as a single swivel to assist it from tangling.
Repair Kit – includes a standard repair kit with colour coded patches and glue as well as wrench tool in case the valve needs tightening.
> military grade drop-stitch construction
> stable beginner friendly all-round board
> sleek design with front rocker for nice glide
> front and rear bungee system
> comfortable EVA foam deck traction pad
> one of the lighter boards on the market at 19.5 lbs
> nice 9″ detachable centre fin to aid tracking
> available in two colour schemes
> includes waterproof phone case
> 12 month warranty
> full accessories package
> not uncommon but would be nice to see a dual chamber pump included
> detachable side fins would be a plus although understandable within this price range
> similarly priced boards can come with up to 24 months warranty
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Overall, the Peak 11′ Expedition iSUP offers a quality all-round paddling experience that is well suited to those that are new to the sport. Owing to its design, the board glides and tracks well through the water making it easy to handle in differing water conditions. A board that’s definitely worth considering if you are in the market.
We hope you found this review helpful and as always would welcome your thoughts or feedback. Please feel free to leave your comments below and we will get back to you.
Until then, stay safe and get wet.