Rolling loaded kayak

Leaned to roll a little now I need lotsa practice. So far I can only roll on one side. Question is: How does a heavily loaded kayak affect rolling? Kayak is a Eddyline Nighthawk 16. Load is me ('bout 165 necked) and gear (30 pounds of gear, 20 pounds of food) plus spare paddle on the foredeck, bilge pump and paddle float,etc.

Will it be easier . . . harder?

If you pack it with the weight stable and held to the middle of the bottom hull so it does NOT shift when edging or rolling, and place the heaviest items as close to the middle of the boat it will be

A bit slower to roll

But easier to roll, i.e. you will have increased the righting force on the boat significantly.

You will also find you have more so called secondary stability and LESS ease in edging the boat over for directional control, i.e. it will take more force to edge the boat now.

If your load shifts and falls to the deck when upside down you may find it extremely difficult to roll.

Practice wet reentry with a load and assisted recoveries so that you and your paddle mates find a way not to injure themselves handling the extra weight.

Got no . . .
. . . paddle mates. I’m on my own. 'Bout the best I can do is practice a little and maybe get a roll to my weak side before I leave on a long trip. I think I will load the boat up and see how it handles. I haven’t ever had it quite as heavy as it will be.

Starts slower, rest the same
I find that it takes a little more oomph to get it started, and it can be a little slower thru the first bit. No change in process, just make sure your head doesn’t get ahead of the boat’s roll.

But no diff in technique. And a loaded kayak finishes coming pretty smartly.

make sure your head doesn’t get ahead

– Last Updated: May-23-09 9:45 AM EST –

My experience is that most often the biggest difference is that a loaded boat rolls slower than the same boat unladen.

However, with a strong initiation, a loaded boat may right very fast.

I mostly wish to reinforce Celia's note to be certain your head doesn't get ahead of the boat. Let the boat pull you upright.

like others have said it won’t be harder
in fact the last part of the roll might be easier.

other side asap
learn it NOW before you learn to ‘trust’ your good side!

oh yeah…what they said.


Very good advice
Both sides earlier better - in fact we are going out in about an hour for me to spend a couple of hours specifically recovering my left side because my roll doesn’t last the winter over there as well as the right…

loaded kayak vs. Nighthawk 16
Rolling a loaded kayak is easy if it’s rollable. Rolling a Nighthawk 16 is a different question. Don’t plan to make it a layback roll or you’ll be visiting your chiropractor. The combing is too high, loaded or not.