Ric Burnley
BIC adds a Cross 12, longer with more volume for larger anglers and heavier gear.

Standup paddleboards are proving to be quick and easy vehicles for skinny and small-water fishing. Two of the leaders in design and function, NRS and BIC released new and improved SUPs at ICAST 2016.

The new NRS Heron is an inflatable SUP with smart fishing features.

The Heron 11 is an inflatable board ready for hard fishing.

At 11 feet long, it fits the sweet spot for maneuverability and tracking. To further improve performance, the Heron has a flat, drop-stitched deck covered with a soft closed-cell foam pad. Two pontoon chambers running down each side improve tracking and stability. The folks at NRS claim an angler can sit on the pontoons without flipping the board. The pontoons also keep the board rigid for improved performance, you can walk to the stern or the bow without the board bending. A unique feature to the NRS board is a series of Molle-type loops down each gunnel of the board that serve as convenient tie-downs for cooler or crate. They’ve included three universal mounts that will accept bases from YakAttack, Scotty and RAM. The package includes bag, pump and several skegs. Weight comes in at 42 pounds with a price below $1500.

BIC Small

Long-time board builder, BIC Sports has taken their popular 11 foot Cross SUP one foot better. The new Cross 12 adds length and volumn for larger paddlers and more gear.

The board features the same flat deck covered with comfy EVA foam for improved fishability. Built on a hybrid racing hull, the board is fast and stable, even under the weight of a 350 pound angler and gear. Working with the guru’s at YakAttack, BIC outfitted the Cross 12 with 12 leash plug attachment points and a three new gear track in the center of the board. Our favorite feature of the Cross line is the BIC’s ACE TEC construction. Built on a EPS foam core, the board is covered in an indestructable epoxy and fiberglass resin making it durable enough to survive the rigors of paddle fishing.

NRS Small


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“Thank God my dad wasn’t a podiatrist,” jokes Ric about following in the footsteps of a famous outdoor writer. After graduating from Radford University and serving two years in Russia with the Peace Corps, Ric returned to Virginia Beach and started writing for The Fisherman magazine, where his dad was editor. When the kayak fishing scene exploded, Ric was among the first to get onboard. His 2007 book, The Complete Kayak Fisherman is one of the first tomes to introduce anglers to paddle fishing and hundreds of articles and seminars have brought countless anglers into the fold. When he’s not chasing every fish that swims, Ric teaches English at a school for at-risk teens.


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