Best way to get into Oru Inlet kayak

I just received my Oru Inlet kayak and having only experience on a sit on top kayak I’m wondering what is the best way to get into (and out of) it. I’ve watched videos of using the paddle as an outrigger, but they show small cockpit openings. The inlet has a very open cockpit.

For the time being, I’ll be launching from beaches in local harbors in SoCal.


With the large cockpit I’d suggest straddling the kayak, plopping your but down and then bringing your legs in. Depending on balance and conditions, you might want to do a quick paddle brace when bringing your legs in.

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Beaches? One small wave and it will be full of water. Get past the surf before you enter.
Good luck returning to the beach. Dry.

Note that the manufacturer’s description states “Designed for use on flat water”. Personally I’d only use it on a flat calm pond.

If you swamp that boat it will sink and getting it back to shore will be a major hassle. At a bare minimum put flotation bags in the bow and stern.


The design is more of a solo canoe than a kayak. I’d suggest looking for videos that deal with getting into and out of a small canoe.

Agree with fore and aft float bags to keep from losing it if swamped. Keep to flat water as the manufacturer suggests and near shore. This boat may not lend itself to a self or assisted rescue even with float bags due to its apparent minimal freeboard…

I appreciate the warnings but I’m absolutely not using it from a beach in the open ocean. It’s from little beach in a protected area of a harbor (Huntington Harbor) where there are no waves. It’s where the rental place launches its kayaks and paddleboards. The only surface disturbances will be occasional wake from private boats who are limited to 5mph while in the area in which we paddle.

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30” wide will make it hard to straddle but it should be very stable. I’d approach from one side and use a paddle brace - hold your paddle flat just behind the cockpit. Keep your center of gravity/weight as low as you possibly can and get your butt into the seat smoothly and quickly. Then you can get your legs in afterwards.

Don’t worry if you get wet a few times before you get it down, kayaking after all is called a “water sport” fir a reason!

That is a great idea. I found a video on a solo canoe launch from a beach and I think that is what I will try the first time I go out.

30" is definitely too wide for me to straddle, as I am only 5’ 2". I think I will approach it as a canoe.

Sounds like you have a plan. Here is a video of a technique for entering & exiting ultralight canoes (less that 18 pounds).

Thanks. This is the video I found. It looks a little easier to me, but I don’t really know

The key in both is weight centered and low. you will want to experiment to see what works for you. Note that the Old Town canoe is much more abrasion resistant than your Oru so you will probably want to have it fully floating when launching and landing.

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Wow watch this magic reviewer climb in at 55 sec time point …

In reviews of this boat people seem to use magic to enter and exit. You don’t see any videos with people trying to get in this thing. A canoe is a rigid boat - the oru is origami. Becareful you don’t break it stepping in .

Just a warning - the rules may say 5 mph wakeless speed only , but I think most kayakers will tell you that they have certainly experienced people who don’t follow the rules or intentionally try to flip kayaks … so make sure you have a self rescue plan.

He shows getting in off of a bank. (Don’t use the kid method)

I went with these two techniques from Oru’s Paddling 101.
My mom is also 5’ 2" and has tried both with the Inlet.

If there’s a dock I drop into it to keep myself dry.
Oru Kayak How To: Getting In and Out of Your Kayak Safely

Which I augmented by using cord tied to an available cleat.

When I am in a harbor, or the waves are really mellow I’ll straddle and drop in.
The scoot technique is fine too.
Oru Kayak How To: How to Launch and Land on a Gentle or Lake Beach

Ask the cat.

That kayak has an enormous cockpit. It is not really suited for salt water. Too short, too wide and no way to keep waves out. Rethink your plan.

Try to launch a little deeper, almost knee deep and slide in butt first while balancing the boat with your arms then swing your legs in. Less of a “flop” into the boat, especially if you have knee issues.

What do you tie the cord to on the Inlet? Do you have a photo? I just received my kayak the mail (unboxing this evening!) and am very new to paddling. I have to admit, I’d like to tie my kayak to the dock getting in and out regardless of dock height so that it doesn’t inadvertently float away, but I’m not sure where a secure tie down place would be.

@wendiesnow Here’s my post from the Oru Kayak Owners Facebook Group

Use a piece of cord and the buckle loop.
Nothing fancy.

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