Phileas is certainly a quality piece of kit. Reminds me very much of the 200/70 Dale
Solomonson I used to own but maybe even a little more sturdy which is probably down to
the large areas of grip as well from the quality of material used.
Phileas is far bigger and heavier mat than my usual go to mats, a Krypt MT5 and 4GF
Standard. I am a bit of a less is more man. I remember giving up on the 4GF UDT, a monster of a mat, and giving it a way as a prize in a competition I ran a few years ago.
Anyway, it will be interesting to see how I go wrestling with Phileas.
Phileas and I finally managed to become acquainted this week when in desperation, the
opportunity to surf having been very limited of late, I got a session round the bay in a lumpy
So I trudged nearly kilometre around the bay sat down and blew Phileas up to a 90 degree
level of inflation for starters. I was surprised how quickly that occurred as Phileas is a big
I did actually feel pretty comfortable on Phileas as soon as I hit the water paddling
effortlessly out to the the sparsely populated line up. She certainly helps here. There is
possibly a little more grip on Phileas than I normally like as I was not able to adjust position
on it as easily as usual, but it was certainly manageable. The waves were not that flash I
have to say but they were, at least, sitting up enough for a mat and although I never got out
first or second gear I was impressed with the performance on reforms.
I like the valve on G-mats. Especially being able to loosen the bottom section to accurately
release air. I did find screwing on the top of the valve fiddly as you have to get it on squarely
which can be problematic whilst bobbing around out there. But once you get it screwed
down properly, it appears to be very secure. No likelihood of an unexpected 4GF deflation
episode then! So I came away from that first session having quite enjoyed being on a mat again after so long and looking forward to how Phileas performs on a better wave.