double blade paddle for canoe

Some of you use a doubleblade with a canoe. I have a Bending Branches Infusion 240cm. It’s a tad short. I think I’m needing a 250cm that will hold up to some rocks and gravel. I’m considering a Werner fiberglass. My Bending Branches paddle is an acceptable weight, but I don’t want to go heavier. Also need to keep the price down, so I think a fiberglass Lightning is out of reach.

What do you use? Thanks in advance for your input.

just a thought

Perhaps you could start out with a 300cm and just keep cutting a little bit off of each end until you get it the right length? :slight_smile:

I use a 250cm
double paddle with a 30" wide solo occasionally. It is wet and a longer one would be dryer. I really prefer sit & switch to the double blade. Haven’t used it in almost a year now. I custom built a 300cm paddle a few years ago and it was dry but heavy and a real war club to carry and store since it didn’t come apart.

mowhawk double

– Last Updated: Mar-17-04 8:34 AM EST –

i suggest buying a mowhawk doublebladed canoe paddle. they come in three lengths, they float, only cost $40, and they are made in 2 pieces that can be joined in two positions- straight and offset. they are also very durable. (have over 2000 hard river miles on mine) and will be buying another as backup for this years journey.

i used one on my paddle of the Mississippi river, best $40 i spent on entire trip

Is this for your Penobscot Pam?
I’m shopping too. AT’s suggestion of the Mohawk sounds good. I’m going to look it up.

If you can lower your seat
about 2", you can keep your paddle, which happens to be a great paddle! Good luck,


Grey Owl Tempest
Mine is 250 cm. Moderate sized blades makes for easy touring without overpowering the boat. Oval shaft with carbon ferrule. Urethane inserts/reinforcements at blade tips. Multiple wood laminations are beautiful. And once I got the drip cups oriented properly, I find I stay reasonably dry.

I use this in my Mohawk Odyssey 14 which is 29-30" where I sit. Mostly for keeping up with tandems or paddling upstream in shallow water when you can’t get a good bite with a single blade. It is drippy, but in colder weather I wear waterproof clothing.

I did some sit and switch paddling 30 yrs ago and am no longer efficient at it, especially solo. We spend most of our time on shallow, twisty streams so I don’t use sit and switch as much. I need to practice so I can use it when I want it. I’m planning on using sit and switch for workouts on flat water.

I’m familiar with the Mowhawk doubleblade. It’s a good product. The blade size and paddle weight is more than I can manage for a whole day. The good thing about the paddle that I have is that it is light and has a smaller blade that is easier on my body. For stronger folks, the Mohawk is a good paddle.

We just dropped my seat another 1 1/2" and I was supposed to paddle in a pool class last night. We were kept out of the pool by a water polo tournament, so I won’t get to test it until Saturday. The seat is now at about 12" below the gunwales, so I hope it’s not too low. We’re going to modify the footbraces so I can get my feet in the chines.

I talked to Bob Tyler who paddles OC1 with a doubleblade all the time. He has his paddles custom made and keeps them around 7’. He started with 9’-10’ lengths. From what you folks have said and what he said, I’m in the ballpark.

So, at this point, I’m leaning toward a 250cm or 260cm Werner medium blade fiberglass with small shaft. Their fiberglass canoe paddles hold up well and are a good weight for me.

I do like the Bending Branches Infusion and will try it with the lower seat. I’m not sure if it’s stiff enough and it didn’t seem as effective when I used the non-power face in bracing and backstroke. I’m sure my technique needs work, so that might get better. I need a paddle that comes apart to stow it out of the way in my solo, so it works well for that.

Thanks again for the responses. Any other ideas are welcome.

Good info
excellent thread. thanks again. It informs the rest of us! I was getting curious about teh double for my wide boat (OTP16) and thanks guys for the mohawk link.

Paddle lenght and Gunnel width
along with what boat, how tall you are, seat drops, depth of the boat, and solo or tandem will help determine the length you need. Measure the width of your boat at the gunnels, the wider the boat is the longer the paddle will be. In my Magic which is only 23" wide at the gunnel I use a 230 and in my Independence which is 31" wide I use a 240 (both Werners) I could use one of those 20 cm extensions but I think you need to send your paddle in to have it fit.

Thanks again!
This is just the kind of info I needed. We’re sort of gear junkies here, so I’ll probably get to own a few eventually. Saw a real purty wood paddle with the drip notches in the blades. Talked to a guy who owns one and he said his works well. It was light, but the one at the show had a large shaft and was too big for my hands. And it didn’t break down.

Mike, your project paddles sound like art. I would like to see a pic when you’re ready to show them off. Maybe CWDH can write an appropriate dedication piece. lol

I’ll take a look at the Grey Owl paddles. The ones I’ve seen look nice.

I use a Wind Swift
by Swift paddles(not the canoe maker). Its very very light and its a take apart. I havent had difficulties with the ferrules in 10 years that I have had it. However the longest length made is 240 centimeters. I use a 220 which usually works well with my 26 inch wide boat; its a tad narrow with the Mohawk solo 13 which has another three or four inches.

Another choice for a canoe would be a Greenland paddle and use a sliding stroke; of course this will bring a little drippage in the canoe.

My husband has a Mitchell Coastal paddle. At 245 cm (the only length made) he can really take off. Its a wooden paddle. I like the feel of it but its a little heavy for me.

Don’t refer to Pam’s “penobscot.” We
all have our personal features, which aid public recognition but should otherwise receive no comment. Is this Boatertalk, or what??

That’s our Jalapeno you’re talkin’ about g2d…

I could have used the double blade in the wind today. But I was in a class practicing my single technique…in between bracing. Wind was 25-30mph with frequent gusts to 40.

Saw the Swift paddle in action today
It was one of the carbon ones with sea creatures on the blades. Nice in today’s wind. A bit pricey for me right now. Really nice, tho.