7 Reasons Why SUP Fly Fishing Is Here to Stay

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Photo by Jason Paul

By Jason Paul

As anglers are increasingly searching for creative ways to get on the water, the sport of SUP fishing continues to grow in popularity with each passing year. 

But did you know that SUP fishing is a relatively new twist on something that actually goes back thousands of years? While the modern-day SUP fishing movement began approximately twenty years ago, the anglers of Peru were paddling around thin fishing canoes made of reed at least three thousand years ago.

In reality, this form of fishing has been around in some form or another for centuries because of the many advantages it offers over fishing from a boat or land. In this article, we’ll take a look at seven key reasons why SUP fly fishing is here to stay.

#1. Portability and Convenience

When compared with boats, stand up paddle boards are incredibly convenient to get on the water and inflatable fishing SUPs can even be deflated, rolled up, and brought along with you wherever you go. While traditional fishing boats have many obvious limitations in terms of where they can and can’t go, a lightweight paddle board and your fly fishing gear can be easily packed up and brought anywhere, opening up a whole new world of exciting opportunities and spots to fish.

#2. Accessibility

Everyone knows just how important it is to find the fish and there’s no easier way to reach the perfect fishing holes than on a SUP. Paddle boards are far more agile than boats and even kayaks, giving you an unfair advantage by allowing you to easily go where others can’t.

#3. You Can See the Fish Better

Something that’s especially helpful when it comes to fly fishing, the elevated vantage point that you’ll enjoy while standing on a paddle board provides an unmatched view of the waters around you… and the fish that live there. This means there’s no guessing about whether or not you’ve found the perfect hole and spotting target fish is all the easier.

#4. Shhhhh!

It’s a cold, hard fact of the fly fishing life — the louder you are, the fewer fish you’ll catch. SUP fishing is incredibly stealthy, allowing you to keep a low profile while out on the water.

#5. No Obstructions

With no boat seats, motors, or canopies to obstruct your movement, fishing from the deck of a paddle board will allow you to effortlessly cast in any direction.

#6. Room to Move About

Another major advantage to SUP fishing that many don’t realize is the freedom you have to move around. Once you’re accustomed to standing on your board, you can walk around, sit, or even lay down. While boats also offer a similar amount of freedom, this is a big advantage that paddle boards have over kayaks.

#7. It’s Good for You

The more you fish from a paddle board, the better it is for your health. While it’s obviously not the primary reason why anglers are drawn to SUP fishing, it is a great form of exercise that helps to improve your sense of balance, strength, and flexibility. It’s even beneficial for heart health.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, paddle boards are a great platform for fly fishing and they offer a wide variety of advantages for serious anglers. While there are a few minor challenges you’ll face on a paddle board such as the ability to deal with high winds and tippiness, the pros of SUP fishing far outweigh the cons in our book.

Jason Paul
Gink & Gasoline
Jason Paul edits inflatableboarder.com
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5 thoughts on “7 Reasons Why SUP Fly Fishing Is Here to Stay

  1. And now how about some favorite brands and models of fly fishing SUPs?

    I have a Bote HD that I like to fish from, but Bote SUPs are awfully expensive.

    • Yes, that’s what I’m looking for. I’m ready to buy an inflatable for my next trip to the Bahamas but it’s hard finding out brands, pros and cons.

      Anyone fished from an inflatable? What brand? What would you get if given the choice?

      I have a 2 place inflatable kayak that I’ve used for transport to various flats and such. But then it’s tied up or anchored. The ability to simply search a soft bottom flat would be big. A standup viewing and possibly casting position is a game changer.

      I’m thinking, forget the sleigh ride. I may burn the flat as my size 12s splash down and then sink into some unwadeable mud… but I will have hooked up.

  2. I’ve bonefished from a SUP and found some pros and cons. The article outlines a number of the pros. A definite downside is that the SUP can burn a flat. On my first fish on one flat I all allowed the fish to take me on a Nantucket Sleigh Ride. Fun, but a big mistake. I ended up spooking other fish on that flat. After that experience I started sitting down on the SUP and putting my feet on the bottom while fighting a fish. I also have an anchor (I use a bag filled with rocks on a rope) and it helps to keep stealthy when there are fish around.

  3. I got a Tower inflatable for use traveling around Africa fishing salt water. I’d recommend Tower. Packs well. Very stable. Not great for touring but when I’m fishing I’m not typically traveling long distances. I’ve added an anchor: an 8lb piece of heave chain on a ripcord. Doesn’t get stuck on the bottom but heavy enough to keep me put. I found without the anchor wind can quickly change your position and ruin a casting opportunity. While SUP is a game changer when traveling, I do miss the ease of a kayak for storing gear and getting from point A to point B without the workout.

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