kayak for paddling upstream

I got into kayaking 3 years ago with a Sea Eagle 330. Just wanted to get an upper body workout to suppliment my cycling.

Well, I loved it and I’ve worn out the 330. Now I want to get a hardshell, but which?

I live in north GA and paddle on the little creeks and small rivers we have here. What I buy must be durable(I routinely scoot over downed trees), go UPSTREAM EASILY(I’m quite good at “reading the river” but…), and not be too long(an 18 foot sea kayak–no, but I think up to about 15 would be okay), and draw minimum water(lots of shallow spots here at times and I hate to wade).

So, does anyone else out there actually seek out upstream work(it has really gotten to be quite fun–"can I make it up this section?)? I can’t easily demo here, except for white water kayaks.

Advice, anyone?

Be more specific about your N. GA river
preferences. If you are running upstream on rivers with easy rapids, probably you will want to find a used “old school” WW kayak. Something in the 9 to 11 foot range would be fine. Going upstream through rapids is called “attaining” or “attainment.” The flat parts between rapids are no problem. When one comes to a rapid, one usually goes to an eddy to the side of the tongues or behind a rock which breaks the current, and then one must accelerate suddenly and take advantage of weaker places in the current coming downstream. Sometimes one can actually side-surf across a little hole or wave in a drop to build up speed and surge up to the next level. A common place to try this maneuver is the lunch stop rapid on the Broad near Danielsville.

On the metro Chattahoochee, the wildwater racers drive their rather non-maneuverable 14’ 9" kayaks up through the class 1-2 rapids, using the speed of these boats to go straight up the tongue without staging out of eddies. You could look for the recently discontinued Perception Wavehopper, a plastic version of a downriver decked racing kayak.

The king of attainment on class 1 and 2 rapids is a 16 or 17 foot canoe driven upstream with a setting pole.

We paddle …
up stream, downstream and all other places where there is water

Going up stream, we paddle for two thirds of the day, knowing that it will be a lot quicker coming back down.

I have a 17’-3" plastic yak, and my wife has a 16’-9" one.



Up, Up & Away!
We paddle a 16’ Prospector canoe upstream 99% of the time, mostly due to my stubborn resistance to screwing around arraigning a shuttle. The 2/3rd - 1/3rd mix works well.

Nice thing about the canoe is the E-Z Egress & Entry. Getting around shallow spots, severe spots & beaver dams is greatly facillitated by this outstanding characteristic of the open canoe.

I too am an upstream paddler
I am on the same search, what I have tried so far in kayaks is the dagger crossover (called the Perception Enduro this year). It is just under 13’ long, significant rocker so it really peels into eddys nicely. But not real fast. Probably my favourite so far in terms of working my way upstream versus powering straight upstream.

The Perception Sonoma 13’5" was real nice, fairly quick, fairly maneuverable, but I found it a little short on secondary for me as I was a bit too big for it.

I have also tried a Current Designs Gulfstream and at 16’10" it was faster and I liked it for the larger rivers.

I plan to test paddle the Prijon Sea Yak, the new Orca from P&H (15’5") and the Current Design Sirroco this spring. The rivers I paddle in are fairly large with class I water so I need fast but not too concerned about overly maneuverable.

If you do test paddle some potential kayaks for upriver use…please post and let us know what you found out.


ranger bass boat?

I go upstearm all the time in my 16’ tarpon if i wil be rock hopping or boumcing over logs. if the river is clear i use my QCC 700. BTW rudders actually come in handy on some of the faster flowing rivers while going up stream.