kayaks for beginners

New to the Sport, and my wife and I would like some advice on what kayaks to look for. We would mostly be on calm lakes and slow rivers with you 7 and 10 year olds. We have been contemplating getting two Ocean Malibu 2 xl’s since they can be used tandem and single, but at 10 yrs old, our son may be ready for his own in just a short time. Any advice is much appreciated.



The downside of the tandom
is that they are really heavy and may not be useful very long as the kids will want their own or they’ll tire of the sport. See if you can find something cheap used. The exact model probably doesn’t matter much as most are barges.

The other option is a canoe. There are quite a few than can really be paddled solo or with two that do pretty well. Or maybe even a solo kayak and a canoe which gives you several options based on who wants to paddle.



– Last Updated: May-15-09 9:02 PM EST –

hi andy..more info you can give ( weights,heights,etc) the better members can give useful advice. threads like this typically run for days with various "advice" from people. what brands of kayaks are available in your area? IF you know that, maybe someone can narrow the field down for you. not much good if someone recommends brand X and the nearest dealer is 200 miles away. caveat here @ P-Net is " try before you buy" if at all possible. Make sure a kayak has room for your foot size , some brands won't allow a "upright " foot placement ( Pelican's from Dicks Sports come to mind). do your research on various tandems,boat weight may be a issue. Do you want/need a large cockpit opening ( rec boats) if you go with solo kayak ? most major brands are good quality ..it boils down to availabilty of brands in your area, cockpit opening size,color,cost ( package deals) rudder vs non rudder. i think once you decide those , the field will narrow and choices will be easier to make. good luck
PS: theres already a bunch of " 1st kayak " threads on pnet ,,,,do a search on them , they may help

Check out Craigslist for inexspensive kayaks. If you see one that sounds interesting, absolutely check it out in the reviews here on P-Net.

new to kayaks
Hi Andy,

Have you checked out the site www.onewithwater.com - a local outfitter in the Albany NY area has written an excellent piece on boat selection. You might find it helpful as well.

Another link

– Last Updated: May-16-09 10:21 AM EST –

Definately check out the article mentioned above - this outfitter has a lot of client base in the kind of use you are talking about. His web site organization is less clear - here's the full link. http://www.onewithwater.com/page4.html

Also check out Atlantic Kayak Tours, this article and others in their Expert Center (ignore the name, all the basics are there). Their focus is more longer boats, but they talk about the basics as well and have a lot of info on paddles, clothing and safetgy gear.
http://www.atlantickayaktours.com/pages/expertcenter/main-expert-center.shtml, "How to Shop for a Kayak"