high end kayak paddle

I am in the market for a good paddle. I realize that this is an individual decision and should be tried before you buy etc. but the nearest high end paddle shop to me is roughly 5 hours and by the time I go and return I have 1/2 a paddle in expenses. So I am here.

I am 6’4 225 lbs and currently use a 230 cm Aquabound carbon tour. It is too long for me as I have a fairly high paddle angle. My boat is a QCC 700, and I paddle in open bays and the gulf of mexico. My typical outing is an hour to 3 hour fitness escape.

I am considering the Werner Ikelos in a 215, the Epic Mid Wing 215, and I have just sent an e-mail to Onno (but I don’t know much about them).

Any ideas or suggestions are appreciated.



onno will give great bang for the buck

– Last Updated: Apr-08-06 9:21 PM EST –

and wings are great but why not think about the epic active tourer. The Lightning standard is a fine paddle and it enforces good technique. Tough as nails.

consider the AT carbon Xception.

i’ve also read alot of good stuff about ONNO paddles here.

I currently have a 215 bentshaft Ikelos on order at work. I have had several camanos and love werner for their bombproof construction and in my opinion well thought out designs. Course Onno does make great stuff too and it will be cheaper, see if you can try both first. I also have an Epic Wing and unless you paddle skis or raceboats I would go for the actice tour.

I am a big fan of several Werner paddles, including the Ikelos, Shuna, and Corvekyan. We handle all at the shop and you should be able to get your choice dropp shipped to you without any problems. Whoever the shop is that you do regular buisness with will probably be able to help you out. good luck…kim

Ikelos, Kinetic Touring and Active Tour
The three blades that are most popular among dedicated paddlers I know are the Werner Ikelos, Lendal Kinetic Touring, and the Epic Active Tour.

My favorite is the Epic Full Carbon Active Tour Length Lock. I paddle at 215-220 and like having the length adjustment.

Have looked at
the Warners and like them, the Epics are nice too, just be sure you do not get a paddle with too small of a blade for your size and purpose-many of the “tour” paddles may fall in that catagory. Will be testing a Warner and Epic when I get my kayak next week. Have heard a lot of good things about the ONNO paddles BUT I can not get a response to my e-mail’s or voice messages, will give them one more try and move on.

Go to www.Epickayaks.com, select Shopping, and play with the Paddle Selector guide. It works well, got within 1/4" of the paddle length I use.

I started with an Epic mid-wing, have altered the length and angle several times as my boat and style have changed. It’s good to have that option.

Hi go4ecu
I had the Epic Active Tour. I guess it could have been me but I couldn’t get it to hook up. I traded it for Epic’s Mid Wing…best decision I ever made with a paddle. I also have a Werner San Juan. It’s a good paddle. But for the money, I think ONNO makes the best paddle. As big as you are, look at the Big Boy. I had that paddle. Great paddle. Also, Patrick at ONNO is about to start manufacturing his paddles with an adjustable ferrule option.

Good luck!


Paddle choices
OK, I have strong opinioins about paddles. The truth is, it’s a personal choice and you should try several before dropping big bucks on a paddle.

Here’s some of my ramblings…

I personally use Epic and GP paddles. While nursing a sore shoulder, I used a GP for about a year. In the surf and rough conditions, I still prefer a Euro Shovel. The Euro paddle of my choice is the Epic Carbon. I prefer the smaller shaft and love the length lock system.

I also prefer a “high angle” stroke so a use a much shorter paddle (200-210cm). Unless you have a VERY WIDE boat, you should try something shorter than you paddle.

If you prefer bent shaft paddles, I’d recommend you look at the AT paddles.

Also, I met Pat at ONNO paddles and saw his product and it looked great. Great value for the price. I don’t own one of his, but wouldn’t hesitate to go that route.

Good luck


Eddyline Swift, Lendal and Beale
I paddle with a 208 small bladed Windswift and a 200 Lendal. Occasionally, I will use a Beale GP.

We don’t have the midwing, but do have the high end regular touring paddles from Epic. Signature maybe? I forget. But full carbon and foam filled etc. I went to this from a Aquabond carbon fiber.

The Epics are very light. The one good/bad thing about the ones we have is that it’ll tell you in a minute whether you are paddling correctly on a forward stroke. The blade will flutter if you are not within range of a reasonably decent stroke. No fussiness at all on the big control and turning strokes though.

The really good thing is that you can alter the length of the paddle within 10 cm’s on the fly, which on longer days of paddling can be surprisingly useful.

The one comment on these paddles to consider is that, should you have to put them back together or undo them on the water to switch, they don’t have a click type lockdown. You have to screw or unscrew them together and get them tight enough by how tightly you turn it, and unscrew them by hand. I don’t have real strong hands and wrists, so at times I have to get the little plastic holder things they send with the paddles out of the day hatch, or ask a guy to do it. Or just not switch until things calm down.

This isn’t fatal, but I have to say that the snap-in type lock (with the ability to alter the angle of offset) I’ve seen in the Werner’s seems faster.

Onno: Low cost high craft worth the wait

– Last Updated: Apr-09-06 6:14 PM EST –

but not the mcdonalds of paddling gear. A one man shop does not do a guaranteed 15 second greeting or would you like fries with that

I can wait!
All you have to do is say, “we can make you one in X days/weeks”. But no response is different, do not know what to make of that.

Cool the place an order and
get the best value you can imagine in a paddle.

has the Ikelos with free shipping. I am also interested in the Ikelos, and a 215 is about what I need. But will wait and demo some other Werners, when I get my Q700 this week, before I order a Ikelos to make sure I get the right length (shops around here do not have the Ikelos in stock).

I really like the Werner feather lock, very durable, and easy to use.

Hi beaowolf
What about going up to Charleston for the Festival. There will be a lot of paddles there. You may end up getting a good deal.


Thanks for all of the replies. I am checking into a lot of these ideas right now. If I go with the ikelos, I was originally thinking bent shaft, would y’all concur? thanks.

Beaowolf, where are you from that you may go up to Charleston? I am heading to Hilton Head for a few days this summer and would love a paddle buddy who knows the area.

Another Aquabound?

– Last Updated: Apr-09-06 10:47 PM EST –

If you like your AB paddle (quality, feel) except you want a high angle paddle and something a little shorter, why not look at another AB? They make a Tsunami (High Angle) paddle that is all carbon. Nice and light (27 ounces), but not stupid light. For the about $100 to 150 less than your top-of-line Werner, Lendell, etc. you can have paddle that is just as a damn good paddle. I have the Mariner (Low Angle version) and wouldn't trade "up" for a Werner, Lendell, etc.


When is

– Last Updated: Apr-09-06 11:02 PM EST –

the Charleston Festival?

Found it, will be there April 21-23!!!