Reviews for Nalu 11 by Ocean Kayak
Submitted by: kaye on 2014-08-06
Summary: A great, fun hybrid board, perhaps better for use as a paddleboard by those of lighter build (my partner, who's a man of average height and weight finds it too unstable to use as a stand-up board) and good for padddling shorter trips in calm, flat water.
Pros: Speaking as a short, slightly overweight woman, I find the board super-stable to stand up upon and paddling it feels like good exercise. It's also a very effective kayak and I like it a lot.
Cons: It definitely works best in flat-calm water - both in terms of paddling it, as the low-to-the-water prow gets easily swamped if there any real waves, and also in terms of launching the board from the shore. I've come to grief a couple of times trying to take it out from the beach even through quite small surf and have lost control of the board on at least two occasions, so I wouldn't recommend using it if there is any white water on the sea at all. Also I find it heavy to lift - but am aware that it is on the lighter side for a kayak in general.
Usage: Fun and exercise and a bit of fishing.
Submitted by: Dv on 2014-07-06
Summary: Great Kayak easy to use, fun hybrid concept.
Cons: Having to stand in specific position
Submitted by: sml on 2014-06-06
Summary: This is a great SUP. Tried a friends and thought it was a great option to have dual purpose, kayak and SUP in one. It's not really going to take the place of a kayak, but for short trips it serves the purpose.
Pros: Very functional Design Easy to carry Kayak/SUP in one Price Quality Durable
Cons: A bit cumbersome to carry
Usage: Exercise Surf
Submitted by: J W on 2014-05-24
Summary: the ocean kayak nalu SUP is a hybrid design, meaning you can sit down and paddle it if conditions are too rough, or the wind is too strong. With the proper back rest strap it becomes a fairly quick SOT kayak. Standing up on it requires a bit more skill and flat water. I got to try one for the afternoon on the ocean in Maine, when I traded for my Yak board. If you have paddled a yak board you know they are very stable and can catch waves too small for a surfboard to catch. The Nalu is less stable as a kayak since the paddler sits up above the water. It does accelerate much faster when paddled, but will not turn on a dime like the yak board. The trade off being that the extra length and shape make the board have much better carry, over a distance the Nalu will be faster. I attempted a few waves with the Nalu as a SOT kayak, with out a back rest I couldn't brace myself in tight and got dumped most of the time. Catching waves was more a matter of pointing at the beach and paddling in. riding across the beach to stay in the wave longer wasn't easy as steering was nearly impossible due to the length of the board. compared to the 8 foot yak board the Nalu isn't very responsive for surfing. Standing up brought a new challenge. while the hull is 31" wide, you can't stand with your feet spread as wide as a normal surf board would allow. Your feet must stand in two trenches in the top of the board, meaning you can't increase your stance to help keep your balance. The guys I borrowed the Nalu from were big football player looking guys. they couldn't stand up on it even out beyond the breakers, where the water is flatter. Being built more like a runner I could stand up, but since I couldn't spread my feet out, any waves made me fall off.
Pros: for flat water paddling the Nalu is fast, the fact it can convert to a SOT kayak quickly is a plus. not everyone can SUP due to balance or ability, for a water toy on a lake or river the Nalu would be great for just about everyone to get on the water. with a lower price than the average SUP you get a fast design that can double as a kayak if you need it to.
Cons: the board is shaped so you can only stand on the foam pads set in shallow trenches. the rest of the hull is slippery plastic. standing with your feet spread wider and toes out would give better stability for a beginner, due to the hull shape and slippery plastic, you can't have your feet outside of a narrow area. Unless you are an experienced SUP rider this board will only serve in flat water.
Usage: for exercise and touring the Nalu is great, Surf isn't exactly the strongest point of the board, but for a basic fun board it fits.
Submitted by: bvalinski on 2014-04-18
Summary: Fun...indestructible SUP. Great entry level board that can double as a spare kayak. Although not the best kayak for a taller paddler, this capability have saved me on a windy day when it was impossible to paddle back while standing. This is a great SUP to spend a day on a lake. There's even room to bungee an Igloo cooler on the back to bring your lunch along.
Pros: Extremely stable, indestructible, and relatively inexpensive. Has decent speed for a good paddler.
Cons: Heavy. Would also be nicer if you didn't need to keep your feet in the grooves for them....not a big deal, just not as flexible as a flat top board.
Usage: Recreational paddling....picnicing.
Submitted by: Bob on 2014-03-31
Summary: The Nalu 11 is a great entry level board for trying out SUP. It also functions as a sit on top kayak for when you need a spare boat....so it's handy to have a couple in your fleet.
Pros: Inexpensive, stable, and versatile. Extremely durable, and will handle tons of abuse such as rocky shores or multiple teen age boys goofing around on it . It has plenty of hook points and bungies, so you can strap on a small cooler and spend the day on the water.
Cons: The Nalu is vey heavy.....about 50 pounds. (but once you get used to it, you can carry it on your head using the two side handles, which makes it easy to get on your car roof). I don't like needing to use the footwells to stand in....it does keep you straight for paddling, but you really can't reposition yourself. Because it's hollow, it does flex quite a bit if you try standing anywhere else.
Usage: Great SUP for large large lakes. Very fast on flat water, tracks nicely, and is easy to control. Perfect starter or family SUP.
Submitted by: JC on 2014-03-28
Summary: Everyone thinks we are standing up in our kayaks when they see us in our two OC Nalu boards. The rotomolded type of board is heavier than typical boards but they do not require a fin which lets us go where many of our friends can't. They are very very stable and can hold a ton of weight, we frequently get an adult and two children on our 12.5. The 11 is a bit faster and turns a bit quicker than the longer board and is even fun on mellow river sections but is not the greatest design for surf.
Pros: This SUP is very stable and easy for the kids to use solo.
Cons: Just like the Nalu 12.5 that we own it is quite heavy compared to more traditional boards of similar length.
Usage: River, Lake, Pond, Long Distance.
Submitted by: RW on 2012-10-04
Summary: Love it very fun and strong...not the easiest to balance on but quick
Pros: can be used standing kneeling or sitting
Cons: Balance is tricky
Submitted by: Krista on 2012-08-14
Summary: My family and I have been kayaking for years and wanted to try SUP as well. We bought one of these and it has been a great hybrid for the two activities. It's perfect for people who live in areas where some waters are more ideal for kayaking but enjoy standing up as well. Being able to go from sitting to standing and vice versa has been awesome! I recommend purchasing a detachable kayak seat (it hooks onto the board with no problem).
Pros: Stable, lightweight, comfortable
Usage: Sight-seeing, exercising
Submitted by: Kate on 2012-06-23
Summary: I got this for my 50th Birthday (I picked it out). I was looking for a lightweight sit on top kayak that I could put on top of my SUV by myself. I use it as a SUP, on my knees, on my stomach - paddling with my hands, as a raft to just float on, and as a kayak with and without attaching a seat. I have 3 kayaks and this one is my favorite
Pros: Lightweight, tracks well, stable.
Cons: No carry handle on the back (like the one on the front)
Usage: exercise, touring, my dog sits on the front.