Tandem kayak information

My wife and I canoe and kayak regularly. She paddles a CD extreme and I a QCC 700. We would like to try a really fast tandem kayak. She loves to just sit and watch wildlife so I thought we could paddle to an area, then she could stare into her binocs while I paddled around. Also I would like to get her to go no long kayak comping adventures and tandem we could make better milage. She only likes to paddle ten to twelve miles a day, so could we do better in a tandem? Any ideas on a model or the logic of my thoughts?

seperate trips

– Last Updated: Sep-19-05 2:25 PM EST –

Something tells me you are trying to do something together,,your way.
Instead of trying to get her to go farther faster why don't you go slower and watch the wildlife?
Buying a "fast" double will be more of a waste than "fast" singles if she doesn't like going "fast" although to my mind 10-12miles is enough time in the saddle to enjoy the day. Just out of curiosity what will happen if the two of you make 14miles/day instead of 10miles/day?

hmm,,maybe I'm reading too much into your comments..your kayaks are already speedy boats IF someone wants to go quickly. To find the equivalent in a double will take some looking,,I bet you'll be able to find a regular used tandem that could fit the bill.

NDK Triton
To test your theory, I just bought a used NDK tandem. My other two boats are a QCC 500X and Tempest 170, nice but not fast boats. This boat flies. I was on Lake Superior with my teenage son this past weekend, and we had no problem covering 15-20 miles a day, even heading into 3 foot seas. In fact, that distance only took us 3-4 hours of paddling. Previously, with our two singles, we would really push hard to get that distance in a full,full day of paddling. The difference with a fast tandem, then, is the ease and/or speed with which you can cover a given distance, as compared to a single boat. Granted, the NDK Triton is lean and mean: 22’6" with a 23" beam. Some of the other tandems are tankers compared to this and may not be as fast. The only disadvantage to this type of tandem is that you give up some cargo space, as compared to the two singles combined. It forces you to pack light, which is a good thing. Good Luck,


not what I meant
Lee, I think you misunderstood my idea. She likes to watch wildlife and I thought I could facilitate that by being her chauffer. As to covering distances I thought it would give her more courage to do the open water distances that I now do without her. As she “thinks” she would be the weak link.

the triton,
is definately a good choice , check out Eric Schades double baidarka in plywood,I bet that’s fast.

Seward Passat
I like the Seward Passat but haven’t tried one in open water. It moves well. And if you need the cargo space, the G3 model has a center compartment.

Nootka plus, ~ 22’6" overall length.
My wife and I have paddled this for several one to three day trips. It is much faster and pleasant than paddling singles. I am a very strong paddler and she is is good condition, but tires easily. We have done several long crossings that may have been very challenging in singles since she has less experience.

Before buying a boat I paddled several different doubles from a rental shop.

Good luck.

don’t shop by numbers
paddle what you like,it’s possible for a kayak with numbers that say it’s wider than another kayak but actually be more efficient/less resistant in the water. Above waterline measuerments don’t mean much compared to what’s in the water. I don’t have a lot of experience with doubles but the older Necky Tofino feels efficient. You might find one of those used.

My usual plug
for the Seda Tango…


Lightspeed Phantom
My girlfriend and I paddle cd caribous and, for many of the reasons you relate, we decided to buy a double.

After paddling all the doubles on the beach at the 2004 West Coast Kayak Symposium, we choose the Lightspeed Phantom.


It seemed to be the best combination of speed tracking and, with the rudder up, maneuverability for us. The balanced foil rudder is effective and very easy to raise and lower.

Just got back from 5 days on Johnstone Strait, B.C. and it worked beautifully.

those rudders
now that makes sense,assuming folks remember to pull it up. If you don’t mind I"d be curious to know how it works.

balanced foil rudder impressions

I sent you kind of a wordy pm.

The rudder on the Phantom seems to have minimal drag and requires very slight pedal inputs to attain the desired effect the boat. The forward placed control line makes it very easy to deploy or retract the rudder blade as conditions dictate.

When the rudder is retracted our Phantom is very easy for me to maneuver, just like a big (22’6”) fat (27”) single. (O.K. I can’t do bow rudders from the back seat, but draws and low brace turns are sweet.) This leaves my girlfriend free to take pictures and enjoy the ride when we are not trying to get somewhere.


VCP Aleut Sea II
Will carry more gear than a NDK Triton and it’s not a “divorce boat”–you can paddle separate cadences. It’s a bit heavy however.



Aleut Sea II

The Aleut Sea II is an innovative tandem kayak designed by Howard Jeffs. This is a performance-oriented and seaworthy expedition double kayak. It can carry a large amount of cargo. It is very fast (it cruises about 6 miles per hour), is stable and ideal for long crossings and big seas. This kayak comes fully equipped with keyhole cockpits, 4 bulkheads, 2 Valley oval hatches, a large rectangular central hatch (with hardshell cover over neoprene cover), Valley C-trim rudder with extended blade, 26 recessed fittings, etc. A front steering mecha-nism is available. The paddlers in the Aleut Sea II sit far enough apart to allow for paddling out of synchronization and allow-ing for larger stowage space between the cockpits. Now avail-able with Zolzer’s pedal steering system (easy to adjust), which allows simultaneous steering and bracing.

MSRP: $4460.00

Dimensions: 22” x 26”

Available Colors: Click Here

aleut 2
is a great boat and very fast. I paddle it with my 90 pound lab and he sits in the center compartment and im able to keep up with people in their solos. It’s a bit heavy for a solo carry but works well when I use a cart to transport. Very seaworhty!