portable tandem kayaks

My wife and I are retiring and plan to do extensive travel with our fifth wheel camper. There are many places we visit that we would love to explore a river or lake (calm waters), but need something that is portable that we could store in the basement of our fifth wheel. We would like a tandem (I think) kayak that is easy to set up, but is also stable and fairly easy to navigate. I saw a couple of units that looked pretty good, but one especially is quite pricey. The Folbot (2400 bucks) an Advanced Elements (770 bucks) and a Seyvlor (550 bucks) and a Innova (700 bucks) Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks, Jim

Check out
www.foldingkayaks.org Actually there is a screaming deal on a Nautiraid double with a Balogh sail rig http://foldingkayaks.org/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=1280

Set up
The inflatables can (usually) be set up quicker than the folders. It takes me 15 minutes from trunk to water to setup my Innova Sunny - about 10 minutes to actually set up the boat. I have not set up a folder, but most times I see posted on message boards are in the 20-30 minute range.

The Sunny does well on flatwater. The Sevylor looks like a good value. The website that Chuck listed above is excellent. For good inflatable info, see www.theboatpeople.com.

Aire Sea Tiger?

– Last Updated: May-09-07 4:56 PM EST –



tandem canoe, maybe?
If you’d consider a canoe rather than a tandem kayak, Pakboat and Ally both make folders.

– Mark

AE convertible


I just bought and paddled this one. It cost me $600. W/double action pump $630. If you want the deck for two people, I think it is an extra $130. So more like $760 total. It really doesn’t take that long to pump up or deflate. It is around 55lbs, which is heavy for an inflatible. I found that it tracks very well & had decent speed. For me though I will need to put a little foam under my seat to raise it up, I do not like sitting as low as I do in that boat. Other than that I was quite happy, hence the reason I bought it for vacations. Make sure that if you buy this boat, buy a pump with a deflating option on it, it will make putting it back into the bag much easier.

are good boats, but if you want a more traditional wood-frame double, similar to Klepper, but at a lower cost, take a look at Wayland Amazon. They are made in Poland, and sold directly from the factory.

My only issue with a tandem
is that it’s difficult to talk to one another - the person in front has to keep turning around or else the person in back can’t hear much of what they say. Maybe that’s just me, though. But my wife and I found it bothersome so we went to separate boats. It’s also kinda nice to be able to paddle alongside each other and chat, if you see something interesting on your “side” you can go and check it out, explore a bit on your own, etc. Also, some tandems don’t lend themselves to being paddled solo, so you need to check that out before you buy a tandem - or else if there’s a situation where one of you wants to paddle and the other doesn’t, you’re kinda stuck.

Just my opinion.

kind of agree
in a tandem it does make it difficult to talk sometimes, especially when its windy. That’s why I like the AE convertible is because you can paddle it tadem or solo. The boat has three different positions you can paddle from. AE also has a hybrid single at about 9 1/2 feet long or the Expedition at 13 feet long. The convertible just happen to fit most everthing I was looking for.

Folding Kayak

It sounds like a folding kayak would work. Try to find a dealer who sells folders and ask for a demo. We have a Long Haul Mk. II (pricey, as you say, but you definitely get what you pay for). It meets all your criteria - stable, comfortable, durable, extremely sea worthy, great service etc.

The downsides to a folder are that they are heavy (especially the Mk. II) and they take about a half hour to get up and down. You can do it in less, but everybody wants to look at it and ask you questions. You also have to properly rinse and completely dry them before packing them up if you want them to last.

People who use folders are always enthusiastic and willing to share, so see if you can’t do some demos. If you are by Northern Ca., you can take a spin in mine.

What you get is portability, safety, comfort, long term durability/repairability and a strong community.

What you give up (and these can change depending on the type you get) is initial cost, light weight, sportiness, low maintenance, and setup/take down time. For exploration as you want to do, they can’t be beat. A used and well cared for boat is a good bet.

BTW,If you talk loud (and your spouse isn’t using this as an excuse to ignore you, and the wind isn’t too high) I don’t find a big problem speaking to my wife.

If you get to Tennesseee and want to try out a folding tandem. I’ve got the Pouch RZ-96. Similar to the Klepper, but a foot longer. Chris

think about Hobie Odessey
I have the Hobie Odessey SOT. I don’t know how much room you have in the basement of your 5th wheel, but the Hobie has been stable. It tracks well, and the Sit on top even gives us a great suntan (important for us retirees.) I don’t know about these people who say they have difficultly speaking, but I can hear my wife quite well when she sits in front.

In our folding double
AKlepper Aerius2, Jun sits in the bow facing me so we can talk while I get a really good workout.