Which advanced elements inflatable?

You might want to look at
the high performance touring paddle from Advanced Elements, especially if you think you might upgrade later on (I believe the sticker price is half of the aquabound). I scored one on Ebay for 30 bucks over the winter. I have not yet had the opportunity to actually use it, but it appears to be well made, with a reasonably sophisticated blade design.

REI has a pretty good deal on right now on the AE. Only $338

If you buy the package you can get a pfd, pump and four piece paddle for $518.

You’ll want a 230 cm paddle length for an inflatable. A carbon paddle is not really necessary for a beginner, imho. I just picked up the aqua bound four piece and it seems pretty good, though I haven’t paddled with it yet.

aquabound aluminum and plastic stingray
i was told that an aluminum shafted paddle gets tiring very quickly, and my cardiovascular system is out of shape due to doing nothing but lifting weights for exercise, which i stopped a couple months ago hoping to get exercise on my bike, but here in minnesota we got snow in april this year!!

getting back on topic, is an aluminum shafted paddle really alot of extra weight, and i heard that that paddle has problems with the paddle not wanting to come apart. i originally was going to go with that package, but then i heard the paddle isn’t that great. also, i may be getting the 13’ AE if i can afford it. and i cannot get the 20% off deal because it ends on the 11th, and i still dont have the money or a job. but i should be able to buy it before the package deal ends in july.

A few ounces
For most rec paddling, or even day touring, a few ounces will not be that noticable. But don’t take it from me, listen to these guys:


Actually, spend the time to read their whole site, if you haven’t already done so. I probably learned more about IKs there than any other single place.

Aluminum ferrels (the parts that fit together) are not much trouble in fresh water if you maintain them (pull the paddle apart when not in use and dry it out). Put some spray-silicone on them occasionally to keep them fitting smoothly.

An aluminum paddle will probably be fine for you…until you use something better!

What JT said about the boat people site is correct. They have lots of good, straightforward, advice. You quickly get into diminishing returns trying to shave off a few ounces here and there.

This is my main paddle, an MEC version of an aquabound. Fibreglass shaft, plastic and carbon blades, $140. I love it: