Why such a difference between paddlers

Hey, much harder to paddle/control a short ww kayak than a longer one! :grin:


As long as you have no need for speed

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I thought it was because the short boat fit in the car.

Not sure I’m arguing either. Did ten miles yesterday and have been getting out almost every day and always doing round trips that have decent current on the upstream part and the exercise feels great. But I don’t think my heart rate gets as high as it does on cardio equipment at the Y and even after a ten mile paddle I don’t think I sleep as soundly as I do after swimming a mile. As a kneeler I don’t think my legs are getting much exercise. It’s all good. I can’t run due to some joint problems.

Short plastic kayaks are for beginners…and cl. 2 througb cl. 5 ww folks.Most yakkers I paddle with are in boats under 6’ long. Dayum, you stepped into that one lol.

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Celia, I got into kayaking four years ago and have spent all my time, so far, on a single large kettle pond that is walking distance from my house. Even on a quiet pond, stuff happens.

My buddy and I got caught in a nasty squall/lightning storm that had us sheltering for several hours on a beach on the far side of the pond.

And my daughter and I, with limited time to play, tried to go out on a windy day…fortunately we weren’t able to get off our little beach without being blown back into the weeds. If the wind had been blowing in another direction, at best we would have gotten stuck on another part of the shoreline. It was stupid for us to try to get out onto the water…but we did try.

So…even those of us who only paddle on quiet ponds need to be prepared for weather and emergencies…


Agreed the pond does have to stay quiet. I tend to forget about this, but one night on such a pond a microburst came thru. It was wild and woolly for 20 or so minutes.

Amen. I think every type of water has it’s own unique dangers (as well as dangers common to all types of water) and the safest-looking water may lull people into a false sense of security. Seems like many tragic stories include “and then the weather changed” and many people including me have been surprised by big/sudden changes in weather even though we all know that the weather is changing all the time. I had to tow my diabetic buddy off a calm small lake once after he slumped over in his boat…instant danger for both of us.

Beginning kayakers paddle flat water and gently moving water.
Whitewater kayaks are a whole different sport.

different skills and levels of risk for different environments but I think it is all still “paddling”, and agree that the “flatwater” isn’t always so flat or safe, complacency is also a hazard.

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I have encountered WW folks who dismiss sea kayaking as flatwater. I frankly would not want to be in a difficult situation a mile plus offshore with them. I have been out too many times with “experienced” paddlers who were obviously nervous, or worse, when they found themselves that far from land. Also people who get inexplicably (as far as I am concerned) nervous when the chart starts saying 80 foot or so depths. As far as I am concerned once it is over my head it is all the same.

Granted this is not even most people. But being that far out from land if the weather suddenly flips is not the moment I want to find out that my companion is freezing up. At 135 pounds there is a limit to how much heft I can apply in a situation even taking advantage of the boat.

In the early days we had canoes. That was it.
Now we have all of these specialized ways to be on the water. Racing, SUPs, kayaks, etc.

Develop your skills and control your ego.
Anyone that discounts sea kayaks has never been out in the salt water with the rip tides and currents or been in 5 foot seas. We can learn from all different kinds of paddling.

Be willing to teach someone how to paddle. Don’t let them get in over their heads. Discount the way that a lot of people describe their experience. Always emphasize safety, because some people are going to get in trouble much faster than you think is possible.


Myself, if they “dismiss” other folks as not being up to their standard, they actually have no opinion. Recreation boats, fishing, wilderness trips in a touring boat, sea kayaking, white water or the biggest difference is what the boater wants, not the quality of the experience or the superiority of one group over another. You get something different out of each one.

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