Looking for a good quick day-crusing paddle for my W-KvUL Vagabond, thinking bent, and see that BB has a double bent Viper they tout as may be easy on this old 6’1’ 195, but still working ok bod. Any experiences with this style paddle in a similar solo? Speed not critical, but I’m a lone canoe in a local mixed yak pak and like to keep up with at least the moderate yaks :-). Been experimenting with a borrowed (little short)GP and its nice & comfy but not quite quick enough unless I use a pretty fast cadence. Thanks, Rick
About 60 seconds of experience
I hefted one at Piragis in Ely MN last year. Seemed heavy, but I had been using a Bell VooDoo for a week, so my perception may have been skewed.
I have one and love it. I had forearm problems with a single bent paddle. The double bent paddle eliminated the pain I used to have after a day of paddling. I have used it on 5 BWCA trips. If weight is a concern, think about a double bent Whisky Jack paddle. The paddle is lighter than the Viper and more expensive. To me the Viper is the perfect paddle.
Whiskey Jack and Sawyer
I have both the Whiskey Jack double bent and the Sawyer Mantra double bent. The WJ is lighter but both are very nice paddles. I prefer the double bents when paddling my Wenonah Vagabond (royalex) or my Wenonah Adirondack but use a single bent WJ mostly when paddling mt Hemlock Peregrine.
I have only picked one up. Beautiful
paddle but feels like a log compared to my Zav.
Any drawbacks to these double
bents or ergo paddles as some say? Thanks for the feedback! Rick
Double bent feedback…
I have two regular paddling buddies (as opposed to irregular?) who each have had shoulder problems, one from a whitewater collision and the other from an old football injury. Both have moved from single to double bents and feel that these paddles (one Viper, one Whiskey Jack) put much less strain on their injured shoulders. And I hear about it mile after mile…
Got the 1st 3 years ago, bought a “Spare” on sale last fall. Not as light as a Zaveral, but a darn good paddle. I use it much of the time, used it MOST of the time before I sold my Sawyer Autumn Mist. would use it more but I raised my seats for kneeling and now the 48" is a bit short. Wish I would have got a 50 or 52" for my second one.
I broke my wrist in 2004 and it seems that something about the double bend puts less stress on my wrist. A Bell Voodoo, a Zav, or a Whiskeyjack will be a bit lighter, but you’ll pay for it. IMHO the Viper is one of the best paddles for the money.
Here’s a pic of mine with my old Autumn Mist. That boat and that paddle were made for each other! WW
My thoughts also.
I bought a 48" Viper and used it once, but now plan to sell it. It’s just feels to heavy to me after using the Zav Medium for a couple years.
I didn’t use the Viper long enough to evaluate the effects of the double bend on my joints.