Ready to select your kayak - See what the Paddle Shack has to offer.
|Choosing a kayak:|
First, what type of paddling are you going to do? Where are you going to paddle and for how long? Kayaks are very specific to use and come in several basic types. Whitewater Kayaks for fast moving rivers, Touring and Recreation Kayaks for flat water, (lakes, inlets, bays and slow moving rivers), and Sea Kayaks for open ocean paddling. What style kayak...Sit In or Sit On Top...you choose will depend upon the type of paddling you intend to do, your skill level and your personal preference.
style kayaks generally are (pros) very popular with paddlers who: like to play in the surf and have not progressed to having a bomb proof roll; great for getting an all over tan; provide a very stable fishing platform; have mobility or flexibility or emotional concerns that prevent them from using a sit in kayak. Almost all sit on top style kayaks are self bailing...no need to worry about swamping the boat! Sit on top style kayaks generally (cons) must be wider to compensate for the resultant paddlers higher center of gravity; are slower for their length due to extra width, do not allow (without thigh straps) a paddler to effectively use his/her body to control the boat; are a little more cumbersome to handle on and off the water.
style kayaks generally have a more efficient hull design; allow for greater gear storage; are dryer, allowing for an extended paddling season for most paddlers; a properly fitted cockpit (the area you sit in) will allow the paddler to very effectively use his/her body to control the boat. A properly fitted white water, sea, or touring kayak should become an extension of the paddler's body. Some would say you wear the boat rather than sit in it. Sit in style kayaks will have different size cockpits depending on the type of boat and water conditions anticipated. The raised lip around the cockpit (the cockpit combing) allows a skirt (or spray deck) to be utilized by the paddler. Skirts keep water...either from dripping off the paddle, or from waves...from entering the boat. Just in case, be sure to have some means of bailing the boat...a pump, sponge or scoop. Bulkheads (walls within the kayak) form barriers limiting water infiltration, and with a properly fitted hatch cover, provide a margin of safety...
Ocean Kayak Prowler Trident 11 Overview
Ocean Kayak Race 2011