Never Judge a Boardie by Its Color - Stab Mag
Photos by Zak Bush

Never Judge a Boardie by Its Color

Why Roark’s Boatman 2.0 has a well-earned spot on 2023’S Best Boardshorts roster

style // Apr 21, 2023
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Despite a flashy look and cut on the shorter side, these are a solid pair of boardies that lean into lifespan without sacrificing comfort to be the lightest weight possible.

Product: Roark Boatman 2.0 17″ Boardshorts

Price: $89

When shopping Roark’s updated Boatman 2.0, expect a bit of flash but don’t be dissuaded by the overt colorway (especially if that’s your thing). With strong-yet-soft fabric and a cut that felt the least invasive of the nine-trunk bunch in this year’s review, these seventeen-inchers feel great in the water.

The shorter cut, paired with thin, 4-way stretch CORDURA® fabric is a sure-fire guarantee that you’ll never have to worry about your boardies getting in the way or slowing you down in the slightest. Where some 17″ cuts feel tight and constricting (especially around the ass and in the thigh area during deeper bottom turns), these lack any “fat guy in a little coat” feelings.


  • Durable and versatile CORDURA® fabric in the back body and waist make these strong yet supple.
  • Lycra T400 4-Way Stretch, Front & Back Yoke for Lasting Stretch & Recovery
  • A forward-facing inseam eliminates chaffing altogether. Not a small deal.
  • Its vertical side-seam pocket reverses into a packable stow pouch. Because stowing is part of the boatman’s life.
  • The Boatman’s Lifetime Guarantee means that Roark will stand behind the integrity of the materials and craftsmanship for as long as you own them. Boom.

For what it’s worth, the neo-floral might not be everyone’s cup of tea for cruising around town but in the water, they look amazing… and your friends, filmer, and/or the babe on the beach you’re trying to impress definitely won’t miss you.

Verdict: Comfort, performance, durability… and if I’m ever lost at sea, you’ll be able to see my boardies.

See the rest of Stab’s Best Boardshorts & Swimwear of 2023, here.

Note: Garrett is 6’0, 170 lb., wearing size 32.


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