Lighter kayaks for longer distance kayaking?

Also? It works for bringing the boat back up topside. I unlatch the back handle then move to the middle of the boat while holding onto the combing and gently lifting the boat, bend down, release the front handle and lift. It takes a (very) little bit of practice but once you figure it out it’s pretty easy.

I think that it is good-thinking to want to stand on the ground. It only takes one mishap with a kayak lifted overhead on a step-stool to alter your physical abilities for along time (if not permanently). I’m not a risk-averse person but I’m not dumb either.


@NotThePainter, @Lillyflowers

Thanks for the tip, happily I can make the reach in my present car but it could get more challenging.

I can see it being manageable to get the boat back up without holding both, more often than not I start the boat by crouching under it and pushing up. I have a tall enough vehicle and still bendy enough knee joints that this works for me. Once it is on its way the problem resolves to just keeping it relatively level front and back.

It is getting it down that seemed to me to challenge things. Since it will sit sideways, it is safe enough to stand on a low stool to release the boat from the bracket and get it that far. Gives a couple more inches of reach. But at that point it had seemed to me that simultaneous was needed.

Interesting to know someone found a way around this, especially since so many vehicles have gone to recessed rails.

Thanks so much! Very helpful!!

I picked up a Pygmy Arctic Tern 14. Not built by a craftsman but it’s light, fast and solid. Surprisingly stable as well. A bit cramped for my feet in winter gear but really like it.

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Emphasis on Arctic! I helped a friend build one. Nice boats.

I really like the short Eddylines. They’re light and tough and weigh less than 35 pounds. The Rio is almost 12-feet long. It’s for the medium to small paddler, has hard chines and thus tracks well. It’s fast but not so manuverable, The Eddyline Sky 10 is my creek boat. It is surprisingly fast, tracks well and is very agile. And it’s taken an incrediable beating. I’ve had to make repairs on the hull.

Thanks, that’s great to know!

Saw something new today on the river and thought of this thread. The guy was making decent speed when I passed him but I thought it was just a vanilla rotomold. Later on coming back I saw him loading pieces into the back of his mid sized sedan. No roof rack to lift anything up onto and I suspect the pieces are < 20 pounds - whats not to like about that? Browsing around I’m pretty sure it was a Pakayak.

Yes, the Pak Kayak has been suggested before. They do weigh as much or more than similar sized one piece boats but the break down does make transport easier. One drawback to most attempts to buy a new kayak right now is lack of stock in this or almost any paddling craft.

Another more readily accessible (and affordable) option is for people to build their own folding or inflatable kayak. Just basic handiwork skills and willingness to follow instructions are needed and for under $200 and some space to work and basic tools, a fine and functional lightweight craft can be built by most folks.

Thanks so much for added info. I don’t think we would build our own, but will probably get whatever we can get our ‘hands on’ most easily, with a preference for the ability to ‘test drive’ or get a used or demo boat. But a foldable kayak is definitely appealing. Anyone have one with a rudder? It looks like they offer one… just wondering how well it works. My husband really wants a rudder for his boat to steer while fishing.

And thanks again to all who chimed in… great suggestions and advice!

Rudders are really not supposed to be used to “steer”. They are to improve straight tracking in wind and strong currents. He should be guiding his boat by paddling technique including edging the boat with his body position. A rudder won’t keep a boat in position when the paddler is not propelling it anyway. If his hands are occupied with fishing, he would not be paddling so I fail to see why he thinks he needs a rudder. The only kayak models where I could conceive of a rudder arrangement being used to steer would be the pedal propelled craft like Hobies.

I did own one folder with a rudder, a Feathercraft K-1 expedition sea kayak. But that was for tracking on windy large lakes and in the ocean. I hated the drag it created so I removed it. I am unaware of any currently marketed folder with a rudder. I do have a clip on skeg for another Feathercraft I still own but that, agains, is just to improve straight tracking in wind and currents.

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My husband also uses his boat to fish ( although it’s not a fishing kayak). He cannot use a paddle when reeling in the fish and netting it, as both hands are full- hence his desire for a rudder to steer during fishing. I don’t fish so it’s not a problem for me. If just paddling he rarely uses the rudder and mostly uses edging.

If we are in a river with current the boat will pull away and take him into branches or shoreline without using the rudder…to clarify further. We have smaller rudderless more stable boats (which he has occasionally fished out but mostly for my son in law and daughter) and also he has occasionally switched boats with me and I’ve seen that he clearly needs the rudder when pulling in a fish because his is not a fishing kayak. It can get pulled a great deal when there is current. Some near misses with huge branches and rod gets tangled up in overhead limbs…

Was that you on the Huron just west of the dam at Island Lake in the Epic?

If yes, you are correct. I was in a aquamarine Pakayak. It’s a very conveniant boat as it nests together in 6 pieces from a 14’ boat to a 3.5’ bag.

Very pleased with it.

Yep, saw you packing up at Placeway on my way back to McCabe Rd. Pretty unique boat.

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If someone is drifting to fish, and has both hands occupied, rudders or skegs have a place. I am losing track on this thread, but it might be worth checking out the ability to use a clip on skeg or rudder with any boat you are checking out. For the slow moving fishing situation you describe, I suspect a clip on would do the job.