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Paddling The Paddling forum is for discussion that relates directly to wilderness paddling (canoeing, kayaking, rafting). Topics focus on trip planning and gear.


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  #11  
Old 11-04-2008, 11:08 AM
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WildlifeNate WildlifeNate is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarytoons
Has anyone ever tried slow-water paddling (lakes or small rivers) with a small jon boat?

Oof, that idea does not appeal to me at all. Primarily because jon-boats are heavy and square. They're designed for oars, not paddles. Oars work well on them (I've used them that way on small lakes), but add a lot of width so handling on a stream would be a problem. You could move such a boat with paddles, but I'd only do so in an emergency...not as a choice.
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  #12  
Old 11-05-2008, 09:41 AM
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Tarytoons Tarytoons is offline
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I guess I should have clarified what I meant when I said "paddling".
I was refering to the activity rather than the use of paddles vs. oars.
I've got a 12' aluminum jon with a 42" beam that I thought might be good on some of Indiana's smaller streams....perhaps I should rethink.
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  #13  
Old 11-05-2008, 10:57 PM
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WildlifeNate WildlifeNate is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarytoons
I guess I should have clarified what I meant when I said "paddling".
I was refering to the activity rather than the use of paddles vs. oars.
I've got a 12' aluminum jon with a 42" beam that I thought might be good on some of Indiana's smaller streams....perhaps I should rethink.

Piloting a jon boat with oars would be rowing. Paddling would indicate that paddles are used and paddles by def are not attached to the boat with oarlocks, and one paddler handles a single paddle.

I don't think such a boat, at any rate, is appropriate for small streams. It'd be fine in a large, slow-moving river, but the total width with the oars on either side is likely to be 2-3x the beam and doesn't leave you much room to maneuver around obstacles (rocks, timber, riffles, etc) frequently found in small streams. Here in TX, such boats are often piloted around the small rivers with small outboard motors. They're barely light enough to haul over downed timber in the river, and I'm sure you need a small supply of spare props.
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  #14  
Old 11-06-2008, 07:51 AM
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brooklynkayak brooklynkayak is offline
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As stated previousely there is no perfect kayak. They all have their design advantages/flaws.

A boat that is good on rivers, suck horribly on lakes and ocean, and vise-versa.
The best bet, if you are not going to be paddling a lot, is to rent or borrow the appropriate kayak for the type of trip your going to do.

Most lot of the less hardcore paddlers tend to go the recreational kayak route. These boats don't really excell at anything. They tend to be too short for long trips on open water, too long to maneuver on rivers, to stable to keep up with other paddlers and too wide to control in waves.
They are inexpensive and are good for short paddles on lakes, bays and slow rivers. Great for paddling out to a nearby island to do an overnight camp.

A popular trend is to go the sit-on-top route. These boats are generally poor at almost everything. People like them as they feel more confident and safer on them. I have owned one and I quit paddling it as my sit-inside kayaks were just better at everything, including kayak fishing.

Most kayak fishing types go for them as they can pile a hundred pounds of fishing gear on them and have the gear at reach.
The problems with most sit-on-tops is that they are slow and require more energy to paddle. They tend to capsize when hit by waves from the side. They are difficult to control, hard to land in surf and wind tends to blow them around. They have a poor safety record, not so much because of the design flaws, but because people who paddle them tend to not be prepared for the time when they capsize.

I have had many cases where I've had to deal with people who have capsized in them. They were not able to get back on after a capsize and became hypothermic far from shore. They are a pain in the ass to tow in wind and waves.

Every spring there are a number of cases of people dying from hypothermia(eventually drowning) becasue they capsized and nobody was around to help. In the spring the water tends to be dangerousely cold, even though air temps are fine.

I am a hardcore kayaker, I paddle year round and at least once a week. I rarely paddle rivers. I have too many kayaks, each has a defined purpose.

I have:
White water boat - for rivers and play

Expedition sea kayak - Nordkapp Jubilee. Carries lots of gear and handles ocean conditions well. It also has very good maneuverabilty and is easy to roll(something that comes in handy sometimes).

Fast sea kayak - Norkapp HM (a totally different animal than the Jubilee). Has a narrow, tippy hull and is light. It loves to go straight and is by far faster than any of my other boats. It does not maneuver very well and although it has a pretty big capacity for expeditions, the hatches are small and hard to pack. I have used it on some long trips

A general day trip play sea kayak - NDK Romany. Resonably fast, surfs and rolls well and very maneuverable for a sea kayak. I have used this on many shorter camping trips.

I also have a traditional Greenland style kayak that is super light and fun to play in. I tend to use this when I know I'm going to have a long walk to the water. My avatar picture is in this kayak.

Sorry for the long rant.
stevie
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  #15  
Old 12-14-2008, 04:09 AM
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ukbushman ukbushman is offline
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I use a Waterquest 14 for my paddling I find ideal for what need.
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  #16  
Old 03-07-2009, 04:38 PM
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ConnieD ConnieD is offline
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My kayak is a canoe: an Old Town Loon.

The hull is a canoe hull. The Old Town Loon is covered, like a kayak.

The opening is large, so I cannot purchase a neoprene "skirt".

I use it on class II and class III rivers, with only a pack-cloth "mini-skirt".

I also have used it at Point Reyes National Seashore, only with a "mini-skirt". But I wear clothing for in-the-water as well as on the water.

I learned how to canoe, before I learned anything about kayaking. I like the handling, of course. That said, I use a carbon-fiber "white-water" paddle for more vertical paddling-style to stay in the clear (not hitting the side of the boat with my knuckles) and also because I like the boat control.

I have never liked "touring paddles".

That said, I do use my "lats" for paddling, not my "arms" so-to-speak. My hands are relaxed, not tightly gripping the oval double blade carbon-fiber paddle shaft.

I also had my "Loon" have hip-pads and a seat pad glued in place, by an experienced outfitter. It already had foot-braces in place.

I have used this small craft on big lakes. However, a Wilderness Systems Pungo with a spray skirt may be more versatile.

It is quicker on a big lake.

That said, I like to paddle nearer the shoreline because I tend to see more "nature" nearer the shore. I also notice I like to "float" up on the scene, and not toil mightily to get there.

I also like the cross-link 3 composite construction for "low-water" "bottom-bumper" rivers.

I think your choice may depend on "use".

I also think an open canoe with floatation-bags can run a Class II or Class III river.

Does anyone really need a "squirt boat" kayak for Class II or Class III?

Have you looked at Native Watercraft?
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  #17  
Old 04-11-2009, 08:04 PM
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Minnesotaroger Minnesotaroger is offline
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I have an Old Town Loon 111 also, and it is a nice mutation between a canoe and a kayak. It drifts a bit on open, flat water due to the 11' length, but it's tolerable. The large cockpit is great for fishing, carrying gear for kayak camping, and photography (easy to get at gear).

I took it through a class II/III rapids a few years back and despite my best effort I smacked head-on into a nasty rock. I bounced off and made through with only a gash in the hull - it's a scar with a story now.

I was able to purchase a spray skirt for it from a local outfitter. The skirt is nice for spring/fall use to keep the cold wind out of the large cockpit. Even with a skirt, this boat cannot be tipped like a whitewater kayak - it will swamp immediately.

RogerB
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  #18  
Old 04-18-2009, 05:12 AM
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brooklynkayak brooklynkayak is offline
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Canoes have their advantages and like kayaks there are various types. The wide stable types seem to be the most popular and are fine for when you are going down class #1 to #2 rivers or for short trips on lakes, but the stability/width are comparable to the heavy backpack, something you don't want on long trips.

In most cases a kayak is my preference as they can handle more conditions. Canoes are not great on the ocean or in bad weather as they tend to be affected by the wind and the large skirt required for conditions can fail in the dumping surf of the ocean, large lakes and class 3 and up rivers.

Canoes can usually carry more gear than kayaks, but light backpackers have no problem with the volume of a kayak.

Kayaks paddled by a skilled paddler can handle conditions better. Even a calm flat lake can turn into conditions that can swamp a canoe without a skirt. Although a canoe can have a skirt and many use them in WW, the large opening is a handicap on a canoe.

Kayaks tend to be easier to roll and brace, but 95% of all paddlers never learn these skills well enough to be used in real conditions. 99.9% of all canoe paddlers can't roll their canoes reliably and are limited to the most pristine of paddling environments.

No matter what boat you use, take lessons from skilled instructors. The skills you learn will make paddling easier and will allow you to deal with conditions when they arrive and they will. Currents and waves can make boat control difficult and can be dangerous to an unskilled paddler.
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  #19  
Old 12-04-2013, 10:45 AM
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oyvindbl oyvindbl is offline
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You should check out the P&H Hammer Kayak. It is a new type of crossover kayak, between sea kayak and river kayak. Looks like a lot of fun.
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  #20  
Old 12-07-2013, 10:00 AM
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Benwaller Benwaller is offline
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We're happy with our Old Town Vapor 10 XT's which we bought a couple of years ago. Not really suitable for river-running as the cockpits are wide open though we've had them in class 2 and 3 water and with a little common sense and competence such water need not be a death sentence. One of the benefits of an open cockpit is the ease with which one can disembark the ship, appreciation gained through experience.

They are roto-moulded, no seams, so they are pretty robust as well. Good enough boats for the freshwater around here. 48 pound boats, we toss both of them in the bed of the Frontier without issue and sally forth.

Lime green, too. On the monthly Midnite River Float that we attend pretty regularly it is pretty cool to lay an electric lantern between the footrests and light 'em up. We love glow-in-the-dark boats.

The Vapors are very stable boats, but can be a workout on lake water before a wind as they are only 10' long and fairly wide of beam. However they are exceptional fishing platforms once properly rigged.

So, though I am not recommending the Vapor to those who intend to exercise their danger fantasy I have found this boat to be more than adequate for fishing, drifting, relaxing and general recreation.

And though they aren't exactly cheap they are affordable for most folk.



Ben
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