GP length question.

For the same boat/paddler, should a GP be the same length as a Euro?

For me…
It’s about the same, to a tad longer for a GP or Aleutian, but I like the loom about 2" longer than the “standard” hip width plus two fists.

a bit longer
I used to paddle 215cm Euro and now I only paddle GP.

230 if a bit skinny, 220 if it’s a wider blade.

Often I slide the paddle in my hands which effectively makes it longer so I get to insert more blade in the water for more purchase (and for corrective strokes).

Lumpy Paddles
Here is Bill Bremer’s take on Greenland paddle sizing:

Bill makes Lumpy paddles which are generally pretty well-regarded.

Bill had me paddle with a long
closet pole to get a comfortable loom length and desirable overall length to clear the gunnels on my solo canoe with a variety of stroke techniques and then mark the pole with the measurements I liked. R

speaking…if you are paddling with the correct size Euro for you, Yes. If not …then …it depends.

when I paddled with an Euro…I use a 214.started with a 218 {204 for WW, now down to a 196 for WW} When I started with a Greenland paddle I used a 88 inch paddle {about 223.5 cm} now I use a 86 {218.5cm} inch Greenland paddle and sometimes a 85 {216 cm}

Length is only a part of the equation.

Best Wishes


I use
I use a 210 euro paddle and my Greenland I use now is 85 inches or 215.9cm. But my latest carbon fiber paddle has a 3.5 inch wide and the ends were I was using a wood greenland that was 210cm but was only 3.4 inches wide at ends.

So depending on width maybe a touch longer than a euro unless your one of those euro guys who use a really long a euro which I think is very common. I see women that are only 5 foot tall using 220 euros and many guys my height at 5’8" use 230 euros way too long in my opinion. BUT kayak width comes into play too. Are you paddling a super wide kayak like a pungo that is super wide or a more typical Greenland style kayak in the 21-23 inch range.

My two kayaks right now I use my Greenland are a Valley Avocet RM 22" wide and a NDK Greenlander Pro 21.5" wide.

I use my Aleut with my surf ski.
I’m building one for a friend from a blank I had already cut for someone else. It will be a bit short based on what I’ve read but s/b fine for a starter.

Personally, I don’t think the traditional “armspan plus a cubit” or “reach height” metrics work for all people in all boats. They don’t account for the range of body proportions (such as being long or short-waisted) or the width and depth of the kayak being used or whether a low or high angle is the paddler’s style. If you’re using a Greenland style kayak that is fairly narrow (23"or less) with a shallow hull that rides low in the water, the armspan method is pretty good, but if your boat is wide and deep or if you’ve got a proportionally longer or shorter torso, you could end up with a paddle too long or too short.

If you are having one made, the craftsman will be able to walk you through the process of determining a good length. If you have a wooden one made (which I would suggest before investing in carbon) it can be shortened, so erring on the longer side is an option.

I paddle mostly Greenland style boats running from 21"to 23" with low decks. I have found my optimal lengths to be a 230 Euro or a 213 or 218 Greenland with them. I was fortunate to be able to test a range of lengths and choose by trial and error.

There was a paddle maker on a few years ago who did a survey of GP users with their personal stats and preferred length and style of paddle. Maybe somebody else here will recall it and have the link.

Paddle Poll
The Qajaq USA paddle poll, put together by Gabriel Romeu is on the Qajaq USA website, Greenland paddles links page, at .

Greg Stamer

thanks, Greg, that’s the one…

There is another survey that I did. It was printed in the Summer of 2010 Masik {Q-USA newsletter}

Best Wishes


better investment

– Last Updated: Feb-01-15 2:02 PM EST –

(I meant "better option" (don't know how the autocorrect got "investment" out of that -- can't correct response titles)

Actually that was the survey I meant. More useful to the OP's inquiry since it has so much data on the size of the paddlers.

One side note on your chart, Roy, that I had not noticed when you first published it. Amusing typo: I'm user #5 on your survey and somehow the maker of my laminated WRC paddle (Friday Harbor) got misprinted as "Harbor Freight".

Trying to imagine what a GP by Harbor Freight Tools would be like: pot metal? Day-glo orange PVC?


– Last Updated: Feb-01-15 2:14 PM EST –'s in print. Must be true.

Please contact Harbor freight and let them know:} they now sell Greenland Paddles.

I went back and looked at the original survey that I have on my computer and I had typed in Harbor Freight. So the mistake was mine and not Tom's when he set up the bad

Best Wishes

No more Friday Harbor paddles anyway

– Last Updated: Feb-01-15 2:57 PM EST –

Unfortunately, David Smith of Friday Harbor Paddles had to quit making them several years ago due to problems with his hands (tendonitis?). Really a shame, as they were wonderful paddles.

I'll have to watch the Harbor Freight coupon inserts in the Sunday paper to see when they have a special on GP's for $99.99 plus a free flashlight.

We did build a pretty decent canoe cart out of parts from Harbor Freight. Or as some of my more picky tool-using friends call it: "Harbor Fright".

Speaking of Harbor Freight
Check out THESE deals:

Laughed so hard I spit my Cheerios.

Link Added to Qajaq USA website

Thanks for posting that, I missed that link! Sorry for the omission.

Your excellent article is now listed on the Qajaq USA Greenland paddle link tab, (in the articles from the MASIK section).


Greg Stamer

Paddle’s loa should be height plus a cubit - distance from elbow to wrist. Loom should be waist plus a fist on either side.

is only a size to start with…and doesn’t work for really tall people or for really short people.

It was only a starting place for even the Greenland paddlers…not the end all.

Greenland people have a slightly different body size than Europeans {arms are slightly different in relation to height} so this only …sort of works for other nationalities.

Best Wishes