Choosing a Spare Paddle?

-- Last Updated: Dec-20-14 6:34 PM EST --

I invested in a nice CF Cyprus in the 205 length as my full-time paddle, but I was curious about spare paddles?

I know the idea is to get you through should your other paddle break, but what kinds of paddles are you guys keeping as spares? Something similar to your current paddle? Something completely different in case you want to "change things up?"

I have a 230 fiberglass paddle that I think is for sit-on tops but it does break down in half if I wanted to carry it with me on my touring boat. That's a lot longer than I'd ever use for daily use but in a pinch it would get me through. If that's sufficient I'd rather not dish out more money, at least right now.

Similar or very different paddle
Lots of possibilities, but I tend to use a similar paddle. If you want to save money go with something like a 205 Werner Tybee FG, very similar, but heavier. It also has a tough blade, so can be used in rocky areas that might otherwise beat up your Cyprus. At step up would be a 205 Shuna, essentially a Cyprus without the foam core - that is what I use as a spare and often choose to paddle with instead of my Cyprus. I also sometime use a wing paddle or Greenlandic paddle as my spare, with my Cyprus as a spare when using the wing or GP. Some folks I know alternate between the larger blade and smaller blade Werners, e.g. the Ikelos and Cyprus or the Corryvreckan and Shuna, but I’m not a fan of the larger blades.

Current will be spare
Using a 220cm Carlisle Expedition fiberglass paddle which was fine with my Skylark, but too long for the Samba.

Will be moving to either a Werner Cyprus or Lendal Carbon Cadence this spring/early summer, so the Expedition will tag along as my spare.

Don’t blame you for wanting to make do with the longer paddle as a spare, rather than dropping a wad on a new paddle.

Initial investment…
Yes. This hobby is proving costly. I keep finding new fun things I want… Paddles, drysuit, dry top, pants, boots… You get the idea :wink: anywhere I can save a bit I will.

For ww kayak, I’ve never carried a spare
It can’t be on the deck, and so it would have to be a breakdown packed inside the stern. Anyway, I’ve never broken a ww kayak paddle in 24 years.

For OC-1, a spare paddle can be grabbed in an instant, so it’s worth having.

My daily driver is a 205cm Shuna, with another Shuna as spare. I got the second one on sale when the older one needed repair.

On multiday trips, I use a 205cm Cyprus and carry a Shuna as the spare. Being used to the Shuna’s weight, the Cyprus feels airy.

Werner Little Dipper is my spare.
It has a smaller blade than my Kalliste and is mainly used as a storm paddle but is OK as a spare.

I wouldn’t buy a spare.
I would have no problem using a 230 spare to get myself through in a broken paddle situation. Every paddle you buy now should be something you feel would be better than what you currently have at something. Save up, and always go for something that you aren’t buying with the expectation of being a dedicated spare. Buy paddles that you hope will be a new favorite. That’s my take anyway.

use the second
If it fits on your deck, I’d just cary that 230 cm paddle as your spare.

I came to this kayak thing from a road bike background. I carry two paddles but don’t think of either one of them as a spare. One paddle has significantly less surface area than the other. Just like the little and big chainrings on my bike help me go up and down hills, my ‘little’ and ‘big’ paddles help me go upwind and downwind.

Go with what ya have
The 230 should be just fine as a spare until you find another paddle that you’ve just got to have. I’m betting that after awhile you won’t even bother with a spare. I used to carry a spare once in awhile, but don’t even think about it anymore. My thinking is that if I lose, or break my paddle, I can find a piece of driftwood to get me home.

Thanks all! Sounds like that will work for now.