More on ONNO Wing

Thank all who offered excellent advice and comment on my last post. Here is some clarification that I think is only fair to Pat and ONNO Wings. I am a paddler who started paddling in March of 2006. I will be 56 in a couple of months. I am 5’7" and weigh between 175 and 180. I paddle a carbon QCC 700x, which seems to me an extraordinary boat. I have had 1 kayaking for fitness or racing lesson from Mike Beck in Vero Beach, FL. If you ever get a chance to get a lesson from Mike, TAKE IT!!! You won’t be disappointed.

Now to the ONNO Wing. After my lesson with Mike, I have been sprinting between 8 and 8.5 MPH. I cruse on flat water with no wind at 6 to 6.5 MPH. I don’t know how these numbers compare to others, but I am sure happy with them. I do not now or ever have, considered myself any kind of athlete. If these numbers are in fact good, it is certainly due to the equipment.

My problem with the ONNO spinning on sprints may be due to my use of gloves. My hands were getting so torn up without gloves that I found it very hard to paddle at all. Through experimenting with various combinations, I now use a seamless polly glove under a scuba diving glove with synth leather palm and fingers which have little plastic nubby things for a better grip. It works great, however without my taped on piece of rope for an index grip, the paddle still spins when my sprint gets up to speed. Pat from ONNO has already contacted me, on his own, to resolve the problem. That, to me, is the sign of a good guy and a good businessman to boot.

Thanks for your patients with long message. I certainly appreciate any additional comments or suggestions.

two ideas
1) sex wax (makes the grip tackier; make sure you get the warm weather kind, or it will melt)

2) maybe neoprene gloves? they’re typically for cold weather, but definitely grip. maybe you could trim off the finger tips, like Oliver Twist

White knuckle syndrone
Maybe loosening your grip would help. I paddle the exact same equiptment (my 700 is kevlar) you do and find no need for a tight hgrip on my wing. With proper stroke you might be able to rectify your problem.

JT in Central FL

Fast for QCC
You either underestimate yourself - or overestimate your speed. I know of others that do similar to what you report, but they are pretty damn good paddlers (way better than me).

What sort of distances are you holding that 6-6.5 cruising pace over?

Lastly, the $64,000 dollar question: Are you using knotmeter or GPS to measure speed?

That’s even fast for a Pamlico…

Those numbers are way higher than mine. I have only seen 8mph on my gps once or twice and that was down hill. My normal cruise speeds vary but typically are between 3.5 and 5.

I dont use a wing, and my Q boat is kevlar not carbon. None the less your numbers are humbling.

happy paddling,


QCC 700x in a virtual race
I had only two entries with QCC 700x in the virtual race in 2006 (6.16 and 6.37 mph over 5 miles).

It would be really interesting to see more QCC and other fast sea kayak entries.

Hi Greyak
I go for 6.25 miles 4 to 7 days per week. I am fortunate enough to have a winding lake in my back yard and in South Florida I paddle 12 mos per year. I use a garmin Etrex Legend GPS. The cruising speed is on straight sections of my course ranging from 1/4 mile to 1 mile in length. I slow down quite a bit in turns. There are 10 180 degree turns and many 90 degree turns on the course. I paddle without stopping. My sprints are no longer than 1/4 mile. With my asthma, recovery takes a full 5 minutes. I try to do 3 per trip. It has been suggested that I do interval training, sprint for 1 min. cruise 1 min., etc. Obviously, that person thought a lot more of me than I do. I use an “unbottle” from Camel for hydration where the hose winds up in fromt of my mouth. My average speed over the course ranges from 5.1 to 5.4 mph depending on weather, we sometimes get winds up to 30 mph. Once in a while, on a realy nice day, I will do the course 2x for 12.5 miles. I maintain my speed over the entire time but end up pretty wiped out for the rest of the day. My wife doesn’t like it when I fall asleep at the dinner table!

Cruise Sprint & Surfing speeds with QCC
I have a QCC700 Kevlar with rudder and a Bracsa IV wing paddle. 5 seasons of strictly ocean paddling in strong Atlantic currents.

I have a relaxed, 3 - 4 hour cruise speed of 5.6 - 6 mph, depending on my fitness level and sea conditons.

I can push it for the same duration and average 6 - 6.4 mph.

I easily sprint into the mid 7’s in just about any condition. The 8 almost 9’s are reachable in flatwater for very short durations if the water is deep.

On downwind runs with some waves I can average 7 - 8 mph for extended periods. Depending on conditions I can catch waves for speeds in excess of 10 knots and have recorded a ride at 15 mph when jumping from a wind wave to a roller. These are the conditions that I live for. This is the stuff that those without wings and rudders have little or no experience with.

It frustrates me to hear many on this site and in local shops claim that one can expect average speeds of only 2.5 - 3.5 mph. This is a function of their equipment and lack of proper technique. Those same average paddlers could be doubling their average speed and tripling their range if they had a modern kayak, full-time rudder, wing paddle and good technique.

“average speed over the course…”
…ranges from 5.1 to 5.4 mph"

OK - I feel less pathetic now, as I’ve averaged a hair over 5 mph a couple times on an 18 mile loop I do a few times a year. A bit higher on a 15 mile loop. Naturally some sections are lower, some higher, to get those average speeds.

My normally cruising around is often at similar pace, rarely below 4 mph pace. Recently switched my GPS to knots, and seeing a lower number makes me push a little harder - even though I know the conversion.

Envyabull who posts below is one of several I alluded to above who I know are a good bit faster than I am in the boat. Maybe if I drop 50 pounds of fat and put on 10 more muscle and get back to doing more mileage I’ll see that sort of pace…

If you are 56 years old and can
hold a 8 to 8.5 mph in a

qcc-700x than I am 20 years old and can hold a nine mile pace in my nine foot rec boat !

Come on and fess up. That was running with a bore tide and forty knot wind at your back.



Old man and his boat

– Last Updated: Feb-09-07 5:24 PM EST –

Jack, as I wrote, I regularly sprint from 8 to 8.5 mph in my QCC 700x for short distances, as long as my breath holds out, that is from 1 minute to 90 seconds. The speed is measured on my Garmin eTrex Legend GPS. On straight-aways I cruse at 6 to 6.5 mph. My course is on flat water. The wide, 100 to 150 feet, canal system behind my house. The canal is down a gentle bank and is surrounded by houses. The course has 10 180 degree turns and 16 90 degree turns.
Today is the second day trying an Epic mid-wing with a blue shaft. I did 5 sprints ranging from 7.8 to 8.0. I was playing around with paddle length as well as feather. My best time was with 214 1/2 cm. and 50 degrees of feather. According to the eTrex, my average speed for the 6.22 miles was 5.3 mph, 1 hour 10 minutes including all stops for paddle adjustments, I think there were 4 stops. If you have any helpful suggestions, I am all ears. Jack, don't you come to Florida? I would love to have you as a paddling guest in my back yard. It would be great having you confirm my times. Thanks

QCC 700x Wing stats
Envyabull is sure the right name for you. All my paddling is on sheltered flat water. I’ve gone out in 6" seas, that’s right inches, with winds up to 30 mph. With 30 mph of wind in my face it is about the toughest workout I’ve ever done. March will be my 1st anniversary paddling. I hope that I will continue to improve and get some opportunity to paddle in the ocean. I am having an impossible time finding anyone to paddle with who is not interested in fishing and drinking beer in a boat. If you ever come to South Florida, look me up. Thanks

Rough Stuff
Did a kayak race a couple years back when the remanants of Hurricane Ivan hit New England. A buddy of mine lost his life in a sailboat race the same day. It was blowing an honest steady 30 with gusts close to 50 when we rounded Beaver Tail for an upwind,upwave slog. They called off the race soon after as the rescue boats were looking for missing paddlers. In this stuff I was able to maintain a 3.8 - 4.2 mph pace against the wind and waves. Still have the GPS tack to prove it. During earlier stern quartering portion of race had a few rides over 10mph while surfing waves refracting off the cliff’s shores.

Awesome day and one of the coolest paddling experiences I’ve ever had. The QCC700 is a great sea kayak for a heavier paddler (190+ lbs) who is interested in speed and efficiency in all conditions, but not ready or doesn’t want to move into a ski.