Like the butterfly whose name it shares, the Monarch board is meant for life on the move. The result of advanced inflatable technology, it’s one of the most versatile and mobile paddle crafts in our selection. It’s packable, stowable, lightweight, and engineered for a wide variety of conditions. Today, we’re taking a look at why Badfish’s Monarch board could be a good deal for students, downsizers, and anyone looking for a full-function paddlecraft that stores in its own carry bag.
“Inflatable” and “performance” aren’t always words people think of together, but Badfish’s line of inflatable paddleboards bring together the best of both worlds. The drop-stitch construction and triple-reinforced rails lend exceptional rigidity and integrity of structure to this board. The Monarch is also supremely mobile because of its sheer versatility for a whole spectrum of water conditions. You’ll get in a lot of great days on lakes and slow rivers with the Monarch’s speed and glide, but it’s stable enough to make Class I and II whitewater a breeze as well. It may well be your one-board quiver, and for anyone limited on space, that’s essential.
Speaking of space, it’s not just young people who find themselves living in smaller units now. Most of our cities see housing getting denser and more compact, which can really cut off opportunities to for urban-dwellers to own boats, even though so many of these cities are located on prime paddling rivers. Inflatable boards like the Monarch can be stowed half-inflated in the closet or behind the couch during the week, then tossed in the back of a Lyft when it’s time to head out. If you’ve been consigning yourself to rental boats and boards because you don’t have a car to transport one with, this might be the solution to cutting the cord on grungy, half-broken rentals. The board itself weighs only 27 pounds, and everything you need comes standard in the pack. Three-piece paddle, leash, and pump all fit in the same compact bag. Just remember to grab your PFD!