Paddling Long Island

As part of my son-in-law duties, I find myself on the south shore of Long Island (Bellport) fairly often during the summer months with my family. I am interested in taking my Necky Manitou 13 out in the bay between Long Island and Fire Island and was wondering if my kayak is suitable to this type of water. I have tended to use it mostly in lakes and small rivers and just don’t want to find myself (literally) over my head if I plunk it into the bay. I would certainly take all reasonable precuations (weather, flotation, stay near shore, etc.), but just wondering what others think.

The Usual Cautions

– Last Updated: Dec-29-05 8:39 AM EST –

Fill out the bow area with a floatation bag. Use a skirt (don't want to take on water from a ship/powerboat wake), learn/practice your self rescues, and monitor marine weather before going out.

The nice thing about the Manitou, unlike other rec end kayaks, is that of the smaller cockpit. You can wear a skirt that won't implode on a wave. This is crucial, in my opinion, for any kayak going out in the ocean. Its short waterlength means it won't have much speed. So, you don't want to be too far out and find yourself needing to cover some distance fast an approaching weather front.

I like paddling my plastic Mystic (14') in textured water. The downside again is the lack of speed. In a 25 knot headwind, I found myself going at about 2 MPH, even with a faster cadence than I normally use. Slogging back to a launch is no fun, expecially at the end of a fairly long day of playing around. You Manitou is even shorter than my Mystic.


Great South Bay…
…is big water and much of it is fairly shallow. It can go from calm to steep chop in a few minutes. Flood and ebb tides also produce some pretty good currents in places. Get charts for the areas you plan to be in and keep a close eye on changing weather and tide.


south shore
although I live on the North Shore & do a lot of paddling ther I have launched my Manitou from Empire kayaks in Island Park & from the Dinghy Shop in Amityville both on the South Shore. Alway been a lot of fun. Guess Sings advice id best. Just follow usual precautions

what’s the old line?
if you have to ask…

Thank you all for the wonderful advice. I will be taking the plunge (perhaps a poor choice of words) this summer and will absolutely be heeding the noted precautions. Expect I will live to post some pictures and write about my adventures on p-net.

The way I figure is this - a rough day out on the Great South Bay being tossed about is far better than an afternoon spent cooped up in the house at the in-laws. Almost makes a permanent hypothermic sleep seem restful - ah, sweet bliss.

Thanks again.

Empire Is Pretty Safe
I’ve been out in my sister’s ower boat in the Great South Bay, and I think that the Middle Bays by Empire are calmer. I paddle there on weekends in the summer.


A Seayak with sprayskirt and carbon…
…paddle would help. :slight_smile:

And in
crossing a channel that ferry actually has the right of way over you . Know your "rules o the road " for your safety . A great way to get some fresh clams , cheaper too .–Be safe enjoy ----M

Everytime I’ve crossed from Patchouge to the national park an back , wind is always in my face -ha !