About the Reviewer I have been SUP surfing about 5 years but only 2-3 serious years. I am 190lbs and would be considered athletic. The other sports I participate in are Kitesurfing for over 8 years and I do CrossFit about 5 days a week. Some of the other Cannibal boards I currently own are a 8’4” 100L Stinger and a 8’4” 124L Fish; in the past I have owned a 8’10” 122L Blade as well.
Conditions Tested: The first day was semi-glassy leftover wind swell, knee to thigh high. The second day was another semi-glassy leftover wind swell that was stomach to shoulder high. Both days were beach break. My apple watch told me on the second day my longest wave was 348’.
New Surf Sup Fish Stoke I recently got a brand new Surf Sup Fish from Primal Surf in Brigantine. Primal is where I also go for new boards. Mike and Susan have a deep knowledge base which makes picking out boards helpful, assuming I can communicate effectively what I am looking for.
The Surf Sup Fish is great. The construction is as good as any other Cannibal, it is super light weight and has great colors. It was about two weeks that it sat around until I actually got it in the water for a few test days and it is personally the board I have been looking for!
Bigger is not Better I typically surf Ocean City NJ beach break. If you know anything about Ocean City, you know it can be over loaded with people, especially in the summer time. Getting in the line-up can be tricky and if you are one of the VERY FEW people on a SUP, you often are not getting any sort of right-away or even a smile. So being aggressive is key and not being a kook is even more important as with short boards I am often in the same line-up as everyone else.
The two main problems I encounter are small SUP boards do not glide fast enough and are super hard to stand on. The 8’4” stinger is slow to move, incredibly hard to balance on but fantastic to surf once in the wave. It is really needs a good push from the swell and glassy conditions. The 8’4” fish is better for choppy conditions but as the wave gets to be decent size it is harder to really surf due the volume.
The Surf Sup Fish at 107L and fat nose makes it easy to stand on and glides enough to get around. Due to the small size it is best to ride it in the same line up as everyone else on regular short boards and long boards, actually regular long boards can catch waves farther out. The drop in is stable. The board is exceptional in the actual surfing of the wave. It holds speed nicely, generates speed nicely and cuts back like an actual surfboard. THE FISH is super maneuverable. I am not one to just ride a straight line, this is most likely from aggressive kitesurfing. Even on the first day with the small waves I was able to turn the board and drive off the tail in thigh high waves. One of the best parts is the board is small, so the feeling of walking all over the board is not as necessary as with the bigger boards I have. With the beach break its important to make the most of every wave. There were even two waves on the second day that I was able to drive a good bottom turn, come off the top, and drop a little floater, then cut back in the opposite direction. The board really is great for smooth drawn out turns and snappy cuts.
I believe the Surf Sup Fish is the perfect SUP for SUP surfing the New Jersey beach break. This board just moved to number one in my quiver for all around riding.
One of the downfalls, that is consistent with my other Fish is that when the wind is pumping off shore and blows up the face of the wave you really need to get your front foot out there and almost push the board down the face to drop in. The fat nose tends to catch the wind and want to hold you back. Another downfall with the short SUP is getting through the white water. I find that laying on these boards with the paddle under my chest and paddling out as a regular surfer makes things much easier and way faster.
As for fins; please see the attached pic. I used two large FCS II reactors on the sides and one little mini fin in the center. If the waves get bigger I would replace the center fin with the normal reactor center fin or even consider a set of FCS II carver fins to get more of a glide in drawn out turns and minimize my ability to snap the board. The Carver would most likely make the Surf Sup Fish a bit more sturdy in the bigger wave.