Fat rolls paddling

Hi all!

So I have been wanting to get into paddling for a while. Probably the old story of having done it in Boy Scouts / Guides, loved it back then but grew up.

Looking at boats it seems that my biggest problem will be finding something that can float with me inside. I am about 290 pounds, but I have been losing weight. Looking through the archives there seems to be some formula regarding the capacity of the boat and the weight of the paddler. I realize that each boat is a little unique, but what should I be looking for. I know a boat with a 300 lb capacity is going to sit dangerously low in the water, but is a tandem with 600 lb capacity really necessary for floating around the lake.

As far as money goes, not too much of a problem. While a $2000 boat would take a while to save up for, that only leaves more time for me to lose weight.

Anyway, I have blathered on much too long. Thanks for the help.


Something like this …
Cobra Fish and Dive


If you are large and not athletic, I would caution about getting a Sit Inside Kayak. It’s not only an issue of floating your weight, it’s an issue of getting in and out of the boat, doing the mermaid walk to launch off of beaches, and doing paddle float self rescues if you capsize. A SOT would be much easier to learn and to self rescue until you develop the skills necessary. A good sized canoe would also be a good choice.

Heavy weight kayak
I am also a larger paddler. 6’6 and 300 lbs. You might check into hurricane kayak…sport expedition boat. 14’ 49lbs and 26" wide. This boat has a extra large cockpit and 2 water tight bulk heads. I have used mine for several kayak camping trips. Easy boat to load/unload. Hope you fine a comfortable boat.

When I was 290 and paddled a Prijon
Cruiser. I had other boats also back then. A Perception America 13.5’ that worked well, a Perception Acadia that did not work well. Just make sure you are comfortable sitting in it along with all the other stuff you’ll learn here about picking a boat.

Try a folder
Something like a Folbot Aleut www.folbot.com

Klepper Aerius 1 www.klepper.com

They are big volume stable boats and can travel by plane. They show up used on Ebay, Craigslist a bit

SOT option
Here is a SOT option for you.


I have a slightly older version for sale. If you happen to be in the Boise, ID area let me know.

I used to be 300 and ive had several boats. I had a perception america 13.5 and there was plenty of room for me and i didnt feel cramped. It was a good boat and handled good, and the price is reasonable on those. After that I got a 14’ old Town Dirigo kayak http://www.oldtowncanoe.com/kayaks/recreation/dirigo_140.html

I put 3000 miles on that boat if i put one. its heavy but its a tank, at about 2500 miles i had to add skid plate/ repair kit to the front and back from so much dragging along ozark streams you could see daylight through parts of the plastic. The large open cockpit was very roomy. Weighing 300 i put 50-75+ lbs of camping 2 peoples gear/beer /food/water for up to 5 day trips. So many times i was at least 100 lbs over the mfr weight capacity but the only problem i ever had was the boat doesnt handle as well and is harder to turn. Ive never seen a kayak sink from being overloaded

I sold kayaks for a couple years at a local outdoor retailer and ive seen them all. I think one of the best boats for a guy your size would be a wilderness systems tsunami 145 or 165. Tons of room in those cockpits, great performing hull, easy to drive, fast, and stable.

the outfitting as far as seats , hatches, build quality is also very good for a boat in that price range


– Last Updated: Sep-19-11 1:18 AM EST –

Forgot to mention SOT's. sit on tops would be a really good option as well. Ive had a pair of hobie quests for years and they have been amazing boats. Check out the wilderness sys Commander or the Native Ultimate series. Hybrid kayak/canoe, best of both worlds


Wilderness Ride 135 or a Pungo 140
Depending on your agility either of these will work with 300 lbs or more. I know.

My Pungo got old and eventually got totalled out on some rapids and a river with low water last October. I have sciatica and a bad back. When I first had the Pungo I weighed almost 335. It served me well. Getting in was harder than getting out.

Now I have the Ride 135 a Sit On Top which is so much easier to get into and off of. It is a tough kayak however it weighs 15 more pounds than the Pungo did. With my back and my sciatica I find I am very much more comfortable with this kayak. I like the seat on the Ride better but this is just personal preference.

I have to get help loading and unloading. I carry cash to tip strangers kids if need be.

Wildnerness is not the dream kayak of someone’s future but they make a good kayak for the money, very affordable. A good place to start.

Fat Paddler Kayak List
I’ve got a list of kayaks for fat paddlers here:


I’m think I should start my own club and call it the Sea Hogs. If you want to comment or add to the list please comment on the blog or here.

Fat Paddler Kayak List
I’ve got a list of kayaks for fat paddlers here:


I’m think I should start my own club and call it the Sea Hogs. If you want to comment or add to the list please do so.