I love my 11.5-foot Perception Acadia; it’s perfect for paddling around the Mullica River in South Jersey and the lakes and bays around here. But I did my first tri (pedal, paddle, run) and loved passing 18 kayakers. I plan to enter other races, including a 2.6-mile race around an island off Somers Point. Now I’m wondering if a slightly longer kayak would improve my speed. I don’t want anything too big (too hard to load onto the car and put in by myself), so would a 13- or 14-foot boat make a difference in my speed? I’ve had my eye on an EddyLine Skylark but it’s only 12 feet. I’ll only use it for short trips; no camping, all-day touring, etc. Any help would be appreciated.
and how often do you paddle in SJ? I am in the Maple Shade area, and new to kayaking, but so far love it. I often paddle with a friend from PA, but he isn’t always available. My favorite place to paddle is anywhere in the Pine Barrens. If you don’t mind some company sometime let me know. I paddle a Tsunami 120.
I had an Acadia 12.5 and went up to a
Perception America 13.5. The difference was incredible.
Yes and no depending on your size
My wife used to race a 16’9" kayak. She did decent, but always felt the kayak was just too big for her.
The year before last she switched to a 15’-3" kayak made by the same company and she paddles it much faster.
She is 5’-2"
Let us know your size and gender and we can probably help you more.
I am guessing that a foot or two longer, plus a inch or two narrower and five pounds lighter will let you go faster.
This is how you know
if your kayak is long enough.
Questions on the switch
I would be very interested in knowing several things about her switch.
- Were the models similar in rocker and rake? I am trying to get an idea if the waterline of the kayaks probably changed as much as the change in total length?
- How much (if any) did the kayak widths change?
- What was the approximate speed she paddled each kayak?
boats that fit
If I recall JackLs earlier posts correctly, she went from the Q600X to the Q10X.
My petite wife went from a VCP Avocet to a shorter, lighter, narrower WS Tchaika and was faster and more comfortable.
Longer isn't necessarily faster. The key is matching the boat to the paddler's size, strength, and goals.
Narrower will usually be faster.
If you are going to race have you thought of getting a surf ski? I live in Mays Landing so if you would like to try one out sometime let me know.
Length in S. Jersey
I’m 5’2 as well and about 110 pounds. What kind of kayak did your wife end up with?