Kayak advice please

I would like to begin kayaking on the Atlantic Ocean in JAcksonville, FL. Would it be better if my friend and I had separate single kayaks or 1 tandem kayak to learn how to kayak on the ocean? Thank you.

Single kayaks
Learn to paddle a solo kayak first and then learn to paddle tandem. You’ll probably stay friends longer.

Find a class, and a group with whom
you can paddle. I think the advantage of learning in solo boats is that you are getting clear feedback on your own efforts, not clouded by the results of another person in the boat.

Did I say something right…oops
Time for someone to mention the PFD issue.

Well, GK, I never had the sort of chest
musculature where I would want to go without a PFD in public. And I think we can trust newbies to do the right thing by Mae West.

Don’t trust them to do anything right,
that’s what separates us from them. Our responsibility is to advise the newbies and inexperienced paddlers, not the veterans.

try different ones before you buy one.

Rent some, and look around for outfitters that are having “Demo days”

Good luck.



Thank you
Thank you for all the responses. We did try a tandem bike once and it was close to a disaster. I think we might try going single, although I was hoping to save money by buying 1 used rather than 2 used. I am 5’2" 115 lbs and he is 5’11" 260 lbs. We both work out 6 days per week. We should be fine separately, if we can stay together. : )

Thanks again, I truly appreciate all your advice.

good idea
Renting or demo days is a good idea. I need to see if we can rent and take out to the ocean. I know you can take rented one’s on lakes and the intra coastal, which I’ve done but I think the ocean is a whole different story. : )

Class or Paddle Club
Th ocean isn’t usually a beginner’s place to paddle. Enroll in either an ACA or BCU approved course, and you will have a better understanding and I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun along the way. Safety is the first consideration.


Would you rather capsize and have help getting the water out of your boat by your friend or would you like to turn over the tandem and both of you are in the water and have to deal with the problem.

Ever heard of a t-rescue?

Divorce Boats
Well, somebody had to say it! The polite thing to say is to recommend renting one and then renting two singles before making up your own minds about what you like & don’t like. Don’t rush into buying that divo…er, tandem, before you’re convinced it works for you.

keeping up…

– Last Updated: Jun-11-07 9:20 PM EST –

i regularly paddle with someone who has significantly more upper body strength than i.

for example, we both have the same kayak and he can simply pick the thing up, carry it to the car, and place it atop. i can sorta lift mine a foot or two off the ground and struggle over to the car where i have to slide it up over the trunk onto the top.

the good news is, i have little or no trouble keeping up. and as far as i know, he's not slowing his pace to accommodate me.