folding kayak

I just got a job where I will be traveling a good bit. I was thinking that it is a great opportunity to get to kayak a lot of places without having to pay for the expenses. I figured I would just stay the weekend and get in a couple paddles in new places. But I was thinking that renting a kayak every time could get expensive and turn into a hassle. So I thought that getting a folding kayak would be the best thing to do. That way I will know what the boat is capable of, can make sure that it fits, and have the comfort of it being my boat. So my question is, being six two, 250 lbs, and wanting something capable of a good bit what boats should I be considering. I have never had any experience with folding kayaks so I have no idea what to get or what to look at.


I’m not one to pitch one boat over another, but a Feathercraft K1 is a beautiful boat. But you also pay for what you get.

look here…

Not enough money for a Feathercraft?

Build your own:

How much do you want to carry?

You can get an Alpacka raft ( and paddle it with a kayak paddle. They track very, very poorly (not good for open water but okay for streams and whitewater). They weigh around 5 pounds, which is about as low as you can go.

You can get an inflatable kayak ( for 20+ pounds. More durable, better tracking than the Alpacka, but a lot more weight on the back.

I think the Feathercrafts, which have an aluminum frame and are thus more rigid (but still flexible compared to a fiberglass boat) have a minimum weight of about 35 pounds. By the time you add paddle, PFD, and other safety gear, not to mention water, you’ve got a 50-pound backpack to haul around, plus your business gear and clothes.

Remember, too, that, while an inflatable can be squished into various shapes, a paddle, even a four-piece, requires a bag with at least one longish dimension.

– Mark

does anyone know how much it would cost to build one from scratch, without using a kit. I realize that without seeing plans and such it won’t be a very accurate number, but a ball park would help.


paddle doesn’t really have to be all that long.

here is a picture of two travel paddles I made for my trip to Iceland. I just got back on Sunday night. They performed exactly as I wanted.

Best Wishes


Folboat Kodiak
Good all around boat. Not too expensive.

Feathercraft is certainly
high-quality and is probably the “Bentley” of folding boats. Even most hardshell kayakers know it for that reason.

But there are plenty of other folders of very high quality, though not such high price (although some may approach FC prices).

Look at Klepper, the aforementioned Folbot, Fujita, Nautiraid, Longhaul, etc.

There are many others that I’m leaving out.

Which boat to choose from
Hi, I am very new to this sport but I am plannning a trip to Baja Mexico. So I need to buy a Kayak!!

We have looked at a number of brands including Feathercraft, Folboat and Klepper (/ Long Haul).

We have read that Feathercraft takes a long time to assemble and that Folboat tends to be quite slow but much more affordable.

So we are kind of settled on a Klepper and were looking at the Klepper Aerius II (Expedition or Quatro) and the Long Haul Mark II (Expedition or Quatro). These are all very expensive options and there are not too many found second hand.

I am writing this message hoping that someone could give me their advice on which one to really go with…

Thanks :slight_smile:

Check out Wayland
Less expensive than either Klepper or Long Haul.

Though I haven’t built any, I have done some quick take-offs on some of the Yost designs. I think $400-500 is a good ballpark.

$$$ Trak Kayaks

Not cheap, but I’ve been drooling over these. Not only is it portable, but it’s adaptable to the venue.

Innova inflatable
If I wanted to take a boat along on frequent air travel (different question if you’re driving), then I’d probably take an Innova Junior (if I wasn’t so heavy), Solar (which I have), Sunny or Safari (if I was into whitewater and my skills were good enough). They are in the 15 to 29 lb range–you can’t really find much in the folding kayak market close to that weight. Flying with a heavier kayak, when you have to take your gear and business clothes as well, seems just too inconvenient to me.

If I really wanted a folder, then I’d look at a Pakboat Puffin, 17 to 28 lbs. depending on the model. I went on a 83 mile trip down the San Juan with someone using one, and it did alright.

If I were driving, then I’d take a Pakboat canoe, because I really prefer canoes to kayaks, but if you prefer kayaks, then I’d buy the best folder I could afford.

Pouch? Nautiraid?
If weight’s not an issue, consider a Pouch RZ96 - very sturdy boat, but very heavy. A wood-frame double cheaper than either Klepper or LongHaul. Check with Ralph Hoehn at He may have something used or demo on hand.

Also the guy in California who runs Klepperwest sometimes has used stuff on hand - Maybe a Nautiraid?

Something else
There probably won’t be all that many used Long Haul’s floating around (no pun intended :)) because the company is relatively young, but these boats are modeled on Kleppers: if you look on Long Haul’s website, they have a lot of deals on spare equipment, barely-used or demo boats and skins, the latter of whcih you could probably buy and put on an older Klepper frame.

I’d shoot an e-mail to Mark or Tammy at Long Haul and get their thoughts on this, because there are TONS of old Kleppers from the 60’s and 70’s that you see for sale pretty cheaply because the skins are in bad shape, but which you could pick up and add a new Long Haul skin to.