For many out there, SUP boarding is preferably done under the warmth of summer sun, but for a majority of the planet, it doesn’t last year round. However, paddle boarding doesn’t have to end with the summer, in fact, you can paddle 365 days a year as long as you are prepared and calculated. To keep you on the water year round, we have outlined our 5 top tips for paddle boarding in cold weather.
1 – Paddling With Friends
Paddleboarding in company is suggested year round but becomes even more critical in cold weather. Whether you paddle with a partner or a group, you have extra help in the case of emergency such as equipment malfunction or even a medical emergency. More people also means more room to carry essentials such as phones, radios, first aid kits, quick repair kits, tow lines, warm clothing and water. Along with being much safer, paddling in company is also a lot more enjoyable, even if you’re looking for some quiet time. It’s always more fun to share the adventure with family or friends. However, sometimes it’s not that easy to gather a group or partner, so if you really can’t entice anyone to join you, make sure you tell someone when and where you are going and how long you expect to be. And don’t forget to call them as soon as you are back on dry land! We also recommend saving the longer and more adventurous paddles for when you have someone to accompany you.
2 – Be Back Before Dark
Returning before dark may sound a little obvious, but as the cold weather and winter begin to set in, the days become shorter, which could easily catch anyone out. Prior to your paddle, it’s important to check what time the sun sets in your local area and aim to be on dry land at least 1 hour before. This will give you a substantial safety buffer and on those greyer days, remember you will lose the light long before sunset. This safety buffer is also important, as along with losing the light; the air temperature will also plummet. Being out on the water in the cold and dark is certainly not a scenario you will want to find yourself in.
For cooler weather tips 3 though 5, head to 5 Top Tips For Paddleboarding in Cold Weather on Green Water Sports