Driest double blade canoe paddle?

I like the feel and mechanics of paddling my new (to me) Sawyer Loon decked canoe with my 225cm Epic Relaxed Tour kayak paddle, but it drops a lot of water in the boat when I’m using a high angle stroke and I’d prefer a paddle with similar loading and handling characteristics, but which drops less water on my head and in the boat. Does such a paddle exist?

I know that CEWilson has suggested that the AT paddles that he recommends for his boats are relatively dry. Any other input on the dryness of the AT paddle or other paddles in the 225 to 230cm range for use as high angle double bladed canoe paddles?

I do have a skirt for the Loon, but it eventually lets the pooled water through one of the zippers after a while, so a dryer paddle would be appreciated. The skirt is also difficult to snap on to the boat.


Dry paddle
Bending Branches makes a doubble paddle with groves cut into both sides of the blades that channel the water to drip notches. This along with drip rings keep my hands dry.

Thanks for that feedback, weed.
Any other suggestions?


High angle = wet
Using any paddle with high angle strokes will result in dripping into the boat. I’ve used Lendal, Werner, AT and a couple of unknowns and always have paddle drips on high angle. One thing that does help is to alter your stroke rythm to include a slight pause as you lift your blade on the recover, give the water a chance to drain off the paddle face before lifting it to the high angle. Try putting more body into each stroke and slowing the cadence and letting the canoe glide between strokes. With more body and slower cadence you’ll take fewer strokes, sometimes as few as half the number other paddlers are using to go the same speed.

225 cm is probably too short
I forgot to add to my previous post that the 225cm Epic may be too short for a Loon. For a 28 inch solo canoe I’m using a 250cm Lendal touring paddle, which, incidentally, I am soon replacing the Lendall with a Werner Shuna. the Lendal is a good paddle at 220cm but blade flutters with a longer shaft.

McCrea is paddling a Loon with a double blade, I wonder what paddle length he’s using, keeping in mind he’s sort of tall.

high angle
I stopped using my 240 double blade with my solo canoe because of the paddle drips and how noisy it is in comparison to a single blade. Speed increase of using the kayak paddle was only .5 mph more. Not worth it for the aggravation. The only way that it worked for me was a low angle stroke but in higher winds still got paddle drips. Using an ONNO full tour carbon with paddle extension. And did try pause technique with high angle stroke…worked marginally better. Have not tried the AT, but if Charlie say’s they are drier…he would know best.

noise is definitely a factor
I resented the noise from teh double blade. I tryed a bent shaft but it was noisy on entry, too, and lots of drips when changing sides. Then I tried a Werner Camano touring double blade. It is very quiet on entry, but it does make a small splash on recovery. So, I too enjoy the single blade more for just tooling around, but when I have to make time into a wind or heavy chop the double blade is my best tool.

double canoe blade
I’ve been using a 240cm Harmony paddle with my 36" wide canoe, but it soaks me. I think I’m going to try an even longer shaft. Something along the 9’ range.

don’t think they exist
when you raise an object out of the water and raise it over your head you are going to get wet.

That’s why kayakers wear skirts and other water repellent clothing.

Bottom line: you need a really, really long paddle so that the end out of the water doesn’t raise more than 20 degrees or more above horizontal, sort of like the oars on a rowboat.

As a side note: when I got tired of getting wet in my canoe due to the double-bladed paddle I learned how to efficiently and effectively paddle with a single-bladed paddle.

Using the single-bladed paddle also changes everything as it is more relaxing, quieter, and more elegant.

M.McCrea & CWDH
have, as memory serves , fairly long sticks. CWDH loaned me his BB in 280, but it was a bit long even in a MR Adventure 16. I seem to remember that Mike has a 270 BB Fg paddle, but I may be mistaken.

I have been using a 260 BB for some paddling in my MR Freedom Solo. Great paddle for making headway on windy rivers. I hauled the same paddle to the BWCA this spring, and used it maybe 20 minutes in my Magic.


Sweet looking paddle
The Shaw and Tenney website doesn’t give weights. Some of the wooden double blades I’ve seen are in the 4 pound range. Any idea what these weigh?

Shaw and Tenney recommends 8.5 feet for average size paddlers and average size canoe. That’s 255 cms which seems about right.

Herreshoff design
looks amazingly similar to a double design long ago made by Clement (thanks again Mike!). I will post a picture of one of the Clements when I get home tonight.