Paddlesurfer Magazine (Australia)
Reviewer: Andrew Cassidy
The other day I took the Oxbow 10' for a spin. One word: Surprising.
The board is: 10'0" x 29.5" x 4.1". The board I tried was set up as a 2 + 1 with an 8" cutaway centre fin.
I've seen this board plenty of times before, both in the water and in shops and for some reason I've never had much interest in it. I guess I supposed it was too short for a beginner's board and too long and round in the nose for a high performance board. On the contrary, it turned out to be good for both of these uses - a hard task for a SUP. I was extremely surprised.
It was one of the last boards available when I arrived (late) to the small demo day at Collaroy (on Sydney's Northern Beaches) so I thought - let's just have a quick look at how this little puppy performs in the surf. Little did I know what a treat I was in for - in fact, I ended up riding this board longer than any of the others during the morning's session simply because I was having so much fun on it.
The biggest sets at Collaroy on this day were about 2 or 3 foot and an onshore breeze was starting to pick up. The waves were quite fat but had fairly long rides and there was a bit of chop out the back to contend with.
I jumped on and started to paddle out. My first impression was that it paddles really well and was very stable for a 10 footer. The 29.5" width helps with this and it seemed almost comparative to my 11' x 28.5" Oxbow in terms of stability. I was concerned that this ease of paddling and lack of wobbling was going to affect its surfing ability. That was until I took off on my first wave...
I swung around with a kick turn to stoke onto my first wave. The turn and the getting onto the wave were both easy. I dropped down the small face of the wave, faded a bit and then pulled into a bottom turn. The board turned with ease and remained very smooth, fluid and maintained speed throughout the turn. It was just like riding my 11' Oxbow (which has a very similar plan shape) but with the manoeuvrability dial turn up a couple of notches. I worked the 10 footer down the wall, using the paddle to generate speed along with some small pumps of the board. The planing speed was great. I then pulled into a flat, snapping, paddle assisted cutback which is generally what I do on my (non carving) 11 footer. The board stayed in control and snapped very sharply - nice. This board not only paddles well and is stable but it also rips in the surf.
The next wave was a bit smaller than the first and I thought I'd ride it a bit more longboard style. A soul arching forehand bottom turn, hand change with the paddle then a big drop knee heel-side cutback around the paddle. The stability of the board allowed me to do all this in complete control yet it was loose enough to swing it around without too much effort. A very easy board to ride well - I reckon. Now I'm going left on the wave and it starts to steepen up towards the shore. I do a couple of quick cross steps up to the nose, nearly get five over, hang there for a bit, then cross step back again before the close out on the shorey. Again, I managed to do this with relative ease thanks to the stability and the wide nose.
During later waves I managed to pull off some (semi) carving bottom turns and nice, leaning-into-it, toe-side cutbacks. On one wave I smacked the closing out whitewater pretty hard, swung the board off the top and made it back down - all surprisingly smoothly.
I was having heaps of fun.
This board would be great for the intermediate SUPer who wants one board which can do pretty much everything and do it with ease.
- Easy to paddle.
- Great stability.
- Easy to spin around.
- Good speed down the line.
- Great for riding longboard style.
- Good nose rider.
- Relatively inexpensive.