Lightest/innovative kayak paddles/gear

Hi, I’m a kayaker and contributor to Popular Science magazine. I’m looking for the lightest/innovative new kayak gear for an article. I already have a kayak, just need to outfit it.

I figured you guys would be in the know. Only requirements are that the gear is new to the market, i.e. end of '12 or coming in '13. Think: lightest, smallest, most innovative, never done before – you get the idea.


Need more info:

– Last Updated: Dec-17-12 1:06 PM EST –

Just as you would not take a super skinny road race bike
out on dirt tracks with massive jumps and rocks;
we need to know more about location, conditions, etc.
AND what kind of kayak we are talking about, length, volume.
a.) rec
b.) touring kayak for protected bays
c.) full blown open water sea kayak
d.) whitewater
e.) sit-on-tops and hybrids
f.) single blade or double bladed paddle

Perhaps new versions of this Data Paddle exist:

A part of Talon Technology
Phone: +61 (0)2 9905 8700
10/111 Old Pittwater Rd Brookvale
NSW 2100 - Australia

check sea kayaker magazine
They have a regular gear guide section with new gadgets for kayakers.

too bad…

– Last Updated: Dec-18-12 11:18 AM EST –

....that you excluded the kayak itself. My suggestions would have been the Orukayak (origami folding kayak), the new Pakboat Quest models and the Feathercraft Kurrent. Ultralight and highly portable boats are a particular interest of mine and are something getting more attention with the popularity of paddling amongst both older people (who don't want to or can't haul 70 lb boats) and younger and urban entrants to the sport who lack storage and transport options for conventional kayaks.

Shaving a few ounces off miscellaneous accessories and gear has far less effect on the enjoyment of the activity than shaving pounds off the boat itself.

And, at least in my circle of paddlers, we are perhaps less likely to jump on novel lightweight equipment until it has been proven to be reliable. It is a lot more risky to have a piece of gear fail when you are miles from shore than it would be if you were backpacking or bike touring. I've been involved in outdoor recreation, including the marketing of gear, for over 40 years. My observations have been that paddlers may be the group least apt to jump on "the latest thing" compared to other categories of wilderness sports enthusiasts.

Yoy may have others respond who disagree with me, but I feel like gear lightness is not as big a deal to us as with other outdoor travelers since we have a "vehicle" for transporting our kit.

But, to throw out what I can to aid your search, I would say that the recent innovations I most appreciate (besides light boats) are light and strong two and 3-piece carbon fiber standard and Greenland paddles (Novorca, Northern Lights, Onno, Pacific). And for miscellaneous gear: waterproof LED flashlights and signal beacons and the compact waterproof still and video cameras (like GoPro). Improved lightweight stretchy neoprene wear, too, like NRS Hydroskins.
Might also add the various kayak sailing rigs.

Keeleazy is a peel and stick keel protection that is one half the weight of a similar composite keel strip. We launched the product in 2012 and now have distribution worldwide. You can check it out at

so…this is advertising?
Why not support Pnet? And pay for advertising? I don’t see your product in the Gear Guide!

This appeals to me

Great way to recharge camera batteries, cell phones etc.

apps for kayakers
along with waterproof cases.

Smartphones as chart, GPS, weather forecaster, wind speed checker, and surf forecaster are becoming pretty popular.

As others have said though, recreational paddlers tend to be late adopters. Especially compared to other sports like skiing or cycling.

Sorry to offend you, but I was addressing the OP.

Gear reviews beginning now !
Just released - 2013

Rapid Media’s annual PADDLING BUYER’S GUIDE

— a massive 200-page collection of more than 450 of the

hottest new canoes, kayaks, SUPs and paddling gear.

More details
Thanks everyone for thoughtful suggestions. Any leads on self-inflating PFDs that stow in a small space? Or self-inflating drybags?

PFD and Dry Bag

– Last Updated: Jan-04-13 3:29 PM EST –

Beginning to wonder...............
Skill Level: Intermediate

The PFD should be worn - NOT stowed away.
Dry bags don't inflate; they are a splash/puddle thing;
not to be submerged according to the fine print.

Some standup paddlers and racers wear inflatable pfd’s belts. Regulations say Inflatable pfd’s must be worn and not stowed and use a pull cord to inflate.

Self-inflating pfd’s used in sailing are generally a bad idea as they are going to inflate when submerged then you are stuck trying to paddle with a horse collar around your neck.

Never heard of self inflating dry bags, most people try to get air OUT of their dry bags to take up less space . Maybe you mean flotation bags?

Shooting up the wrong tree …
If you knew much about kayaking you would know that most folks are not into the newest, most innovative product. Kayaking is about getting out on the water and becoming one with the wind and sea. Many folks here carve their own paddles based on ancient designs. My lightest, most innovative paddle is about ten years old and made by a craftsman. Self inflating PFDs are a joke for kayaking.

Thanks, and I understand. I just appreciate any help and insight from fellow paddlers.

some more ideas…
the whole SUP craze and its variations- you can get them now with a seat, foot rest, interchangeable fins to allow you to paddle in different positions on different types of water. Sit-on-tops have exploded by their type, features, and uses in the last few years. Who doesn’t make one? The whitewater scene now includes river boards which have become more substantial and mass produced. Somewhere out there are a few folks who attach a pontoon to each foot and then go paddling. Striding is similiar because the paddler stands up but the flotation is much more substantial. Like the origami kayak, none of this appeals to me but its out there and somebody is gung ho to try it, which is kind of cool.

That’s hilarious, especially considering that new gear “show’n’tell” is a regular part of every kayaking trip I do with my group of paddlers.

Sorry, not buying the “kayakers aren’t into the latest and greatest gear” statement.

Kayak Sails

– Last Updated: Mar-28-13 10:22 AM EST –

Sorry for the slow reply here.

If you look at kayak sails, I would like you to consider looking at Falcon Sails.

They weigh 4 pounds and use a Carbon Fiber Mast and precision machined parts among many features that are new and unique.