AIRE's SPUD is a full blown playboat. And it's been my favorite piece of gear to play with all summer.
It is great for SUPers who want to kayak and catch waves on the fly. It can, and will, surf everything. For not being a hardboat, this inflatable shreds right off the bat. Wearing the thigh straps is a must to really edge it.
I've successfully flat-spinned this bomber and ultra-playful inflatable.
I even spudded Brown's Canyon at 3100 CFS! It was the most fun I've ever had. At that level, I wouldn't have felt confident in a kayak.
While I began the river season hardboat kayaking, I immediately switched to the SPUD because you can do way more on your local run. I definitely got into some waves that I normally can't on a kayak.
The biggest pros?
- It's easy to transport
- It has 2 chambers so it's really light
- You also can't argue with AIRE's ducky quality - they've been doing great stuff in the inflatable market for decades.
- It's a user-friendly boat. Anyone that is thinking about getting into kayaking must try SPUDDING first.
- Or, if whitewater makes you nervous, this is the perfect vessel to give you the confidence to captain on your own.
Luke Cutler lives in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Originally posted on CKS Blog September 11, 2019.