Help with a kayak purchase for shallow r

I’m looking for advice for selection of a tandem kayak for my teen son

We have easy access to The New River in Western NC

In much of the summer months the river is a foot deep or so

What are considerations for maneuvering this type of river and not getting frustrated

Any particular styles?

I note “tandem” because Im looking for a craft that we can do together and not necessarily have 2 boats. Is that good logic?

Opinions welcome!!!

r u new to paddlin?
or do you have experience?

A tandem canoe might be a better
selection. I’m familiar with the New River up there, and the repetitive low ledges (actually vertical strata, not horizontal) can be troublesome in low water.

The trouble with tandem kayaks (and we’re discussing wider, flatter, rec kayaks) is that the paddlers get in each other’s way when maneuvering. Plus the paddles are near the center of the boat where they don’t have as much leverage. And, if you take the lunch and gear you’ll want on that river, it doesn’t store as nicely as it does in a canoe. Finally, having to portage low bridges comes up repeatedly on the upper New. It was much easier for me to land and scramble up banks from a kneeling position in a canoe than it would be from a low sitting position in a tandem rec kayak.

I kayak as well, but I would not use a tandem kayak for that sort of river.

Rent from Zaloo’s canoes first
I bet they are still in West Jefferson. If you talk to them and try them you might then decide a plastic canoe is best.

If not I’d next recommend two separate sit on top Kayaks.

Any plastic boat is good.
You didn’t say how old your son is, but you might want to think about two plastic solo rec kayaks.

We race the new river race in West Jefferson every year, and the week prior to it we scout it for the level using our little nine foot long rec kayaks.

Jack L

you might consider

– Last Updated: Apr-14-12 11:49 AM EST –

a river-running sit on top kayak such as the LiquidLogic Coupe or Dagger Torrent -- the hull shape is semi-flat in the middle and rounded/rockered on the ends, to make it maneuverable and less likely to hang up on rocks & ledges. Also, easy to step out and back in for shallow spots or strainers, easy to get back on after a swim, and no worries about swamping it and emptying it out. Lots of fun in moving water and mild to intermediate whitewater.

The Coupe is also available in a tandem, but I'd bet your teen son would very quickly get to like having his own boat :)