Dan Silveira, pro staff for Ocean Kayak, shares an adventure on his Nalu 11 SUP. Dan gives us a great tale of not only the abilities of the Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 but also throws in some fishing to keep us excited.
For many reasons, I have always been partial to my trusty work horse trident ocean kayak, but for some reason I felt the need to understand what all the hype was for these SUP Boards. Honestly, they seemed like a product that had limited use, over sized, and not good for any extreme water sports.
I am a national champion Spearfisherman and have traveled to some of the most remote areas of this planet in search of my next big hunt. My kayak has been one of my favorite tools to bring with me to my secret destinations where shore divers cant swim to and boats always pass up. I began to try various SUP boards for locations where my kayak would not be suited for. My conclusions were that most SUP boards did not get the job done. They were too big to carry, to heavy, and did not like being bumped into rocks.
Finally I got to try the durable Ocean Kayak Nalu 11. This compact and lightweight board was exactly what I needed. It had far more buoyancy than I expected and the stability allowed me to paddle in large wind chop. With some quick bungee deck rigging and pop rivets I had plenty of storage for my gear.
Northern California is home to some of the richest seas and beautiful landscapes on the coast. This was the perfect place to take my girlfriend Cina Luks for her first SUP/Dive adventure. While Cina is strong and courageous, she has a small frame and lightweight. The Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 was perfect for her. On our first adventure we took the Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 paddleboards into the river to swim with the cute and playful harbor seals and to look for our first meal, Dungeness Crab. If there is any food that Cina loves the most, it is crab. While the water temperature was a bone chilling 48 degrees, it was no match for her appetite for freshly steamed Dungeness.
We paddled up river about one mile while standing and began to dive. After we caught a few crab it was time to head back in. To our surprise the wind was blowing twenty knots against us and standup paddling was not an option. Thank goodness the Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 converts into a sit down kayak and we had no issues getting back.
At thirty dollars per crab, market price, we ate until we started walking sideways. With a sense of accomplishment and a good work out we hit the sack early to prepare for the next day’s big finale.
Abalone diving has always been a hobby of mine. The meat is delicious and the shells are beautiful. Cina had never been Abalone diving and this was her opportunity. The ocean was calm, clear and I knew a great spot where the Abalone is everywhere.
Again, the Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 was very easy to launch. We dragged them across the rocks and slipped into the ocean between wave sets. The beauty of standing up was that we could spot abalone from the surface, which was something I would have never been able to do in a kayak. This made things as easy as picking apples out of a barrel. She found the first one she wanted and we got in. After a couple of attempts, she finally slid her pry right under the shell and popped it right off. The next two were even easier now that she knew the program. By 10 AM we were back on our Ocean Kayak Nalu 11 boards to head back in for lunch.
Ocean Kayak Nalu 11
- Hybrid molded-in seating area
- Padded foot wells
- Two carrying handles
- Storage bungee
- Drain plug
- Molded-in integral fins
- LENGTH: 11′
- WIDTH: 31″
- WEIGHT: 44 lbs
- MAX CAPACITY: 225-275 lbs
- MSRP: $599.99