Was talking with a friend who is thinking about switching from Euro to a GP and it occured to me that there will be a rush of folks looking for Greenland paddles within the next month or two. Given that there’s typically a backlog of orders relative to paddles, it might be a good idea for those interested in a GP and who don’t want to carve their own paddle, to get an order in sooner than later. There are a variety of vendors, but my favorites are:
I don’t own a Beale, but have paddled several, and they are terrific. For most of my paddling I use a Lumpy, but then Bill Bremer (the owner) is a good friend so am not completely objective. His paddles are a lot like the Superior, but the ends and edges are a bit thinner and you can get the paddle customized to your wishes. I also paddle a carbon fiber Superior, and love it, especially for very long paddles where the light weight and, more importantly, foam core and very easy exit, really make a difference.
For those who want to carve and have the time for it, Bryan Nystrom’s book is now the go to source: www.greenlandpaddlebook.com .
New company for carbon GPs too:
CUSTOM carbon fibre for those with the coins for it.
they also have cool colors…
I particularly like the blue and red carbon paddles. You have to feel them in person really appreciate them. They are ridiculously light and are very bouyant. Ron even trusted me enough to do the under the hull sculling roll with his own personal paddle which I did… very carefully! (Boy was I nervous for that roll!)
Enjoying My Lumpy
It’s acquired a few lumps lately. Gives it character. Like a good pair of jeans.
Your jeans have lumps in them? Time to wash those things!
How do you size one?
I am considering a gp but have never seen one (besides the web) and dont know anyone who uses one. Reason being as i have read here that they are easier on your joints and i suffer with tendonitus in both elbows and recent wrist surgery and dont want to give up paddling. I am a beginner but hooked!
I am totally confused on gp’s. Wood = flex? carbon stiff and not as forgiving on joints? Are they all feathered as i have never used a feathered paddle. An AT paddle rep showed me a mix of carbon/fiberglass bentshaft whitewater paddle and suggested that - but a touring version for my tempest 165. Didnt realize how confusing choosing a paddle can be. (i currently use aquabound amt expedition i think its called). Unfortunately i cant get my hands on one to even feel it size wise for my hand size etc. Any suggestions are appreciated!
I’ve got an order into Superior
for the take apart GP, got the auto e-mail reply so far but that’s it. I was assuming like the thread initiator that they are probably very busy this time of year. It will be nice to be able to put my GP inside the car!
Spring Time For Baidarkas…
according to W. Brinck, springtime is when one should go out to harvest the most select willow branches, before leaves bud, for the ribs of the baidarka.
For awhile I was seriously eyeing the neighbor's willow trees down the street...
I guess there's a part of me that still think carbon fiber GP's are off... Than again, I build sof with modern tools. Whacky.
is specific to you–both Bill Bremer and Don Beale will work with you on sizing so that you get a paddle that is in the right range. Superior is less adaptable, but the fit is fine for most people. Wood feels flexier and it is definitely warmer, but I don’t think there there much difference in comfort between my Lumpy and my Superior based on the material. I simply happen to like the finer ends and loom of the Lumpy a bit better, but on very long paddles I’ll use the Superior because it is a tad lighter and the exit is sooooooo easy. You’ll love the GP if you’ve been using an Aquabound. Much easier on the body, and a lot easier to roll.
Thanks to billinpa, I have a nice GP
A laminated Mitchell Horizon. yeah!
Appreciate your directives re paddle sizing. If only i could find demos less expensive as it will probably be a trial and error process!! If i do order one - gotta find a hiding place from husband!
If you like playing with wood it’s pretty simple, especially if you know someone with a bandsaw that you can use to rough it out.
Too Bad The Qaja/USA “Paddle Poll”
For your reference.
I am 5'3" and used 81-82" long GPs, with looms from 17-18" long. Loom is oval shape and about 1.5"x1.25". Worked for my boats with beams from 18" to 22" wide. I use the longer GP with the wider beam.
Thats about my size
Im just shy of 5’3" so that length i guess would be about right for the tempest width (just under 22in.)- i guess its my hands that need to fit properly on the paddle all around it ??- that might be a little more difficult. I am leaning towards a carbon for weight as right now a coffee cup is hurting to lift. Do the looms (Shaft?)come oval or round and if so what are the advantages to each? so many questions!
that’s a big jump!
Starting off with a $400 + s/h carbon greenland paddle is quite a big step. Are you sure you don’t want to order a nice wood paddle from somewhere to make sure you like the paddle and the dimensions first? Don Beale is a great resource in helping you size out the perfect paddle for you. From a weight standpoint, since the paddle itself has so much bouyancy, the difference in actual weight b/w a carbon and a wood paddle is not that significant.
With that said most carbon paddles have oval looms to better fit the shape of your hands. If you do decide to take the plunge and get one, the Novorca paddles (www.novorca.com) would be a much better option for you as they can be custom sized while the Superior carbon paddle has a fixed blade with, loom lengths, and loom thickness. I had a chance to try out a smaller Novorca paddle this past weekend at the pool and it was beautiful and ridiculously light.
The weight of a cedar GP
is not much more than the carbon. My Beale WRC GP weighs in at just under 29 oz.
I also had a carbon from Superior and I would never go back to using carbon. There is no flex in the carbon and the wood just feels so much better, especially when the water gets lumpy or trying to punch through some big surf.
I am 5’9" and I use an 89 inch GP with a loom of 21 inches. I also have a Klatwa GP by Feathercraft. There one size fits all is just about identical to my Beale - 89" by 3.25 inches. The only difference is the loom is about an inch shorter - I haven’t taken a tape measure to it yet - and it’s a two piece so I can travel with it.
I’ve owned several GP’s made by different companies and/or individuals and my favorite is the Beale, followed by the Klatwa, and then the Superior in wood.
BTW, my Foster Shadow is 23" wide.
agree with this
get Don Beale or Bill Bremer to build you a paddle–they will individualize the paddle to your body and boat dimensions. You’ll be very close if not right where you want to be. I’ve never heard anyone who was ever unhappy. Then, after some refinement, you can go for a carbon fiber paddle.
Keeping an open mind now
Sounds like a wood gp might be my best bet for my first paddle - I have always been overprotective of my wood canoe paddle and just recently discovered it has always been too long for me while checking the zre paddle website! imagine that.
Don Beale obviously is Beale paddles but the other name (forgot since i started typing!) which company is he with - Lumpy? It sounds like i need to call and speak with one of them for measurements. Is a wood gp much less in $$ or is it the fact that you can customize them and the flex and appearance that everyone seems to love so much? Money is an definately an issue but if this type of paddle will help me to continue paddling this summer, it will be well worth it to me. thanks again!