Hi All Equipment advice sea kayaks
We have been asked about what types of kayaks we recommend so I thought I would put some advice together for the club. Starting with sea kayaks
Plastic is cheaper and can take more punishment brands like P&H, Valley, perception and north shore are about the best. If buying new it’s worth shopping around members have picked up a number of bargains, we also get discounts from nucleus canoes which is always a good starting point. Ebay and gumtree do have good boats for sale. Local waters Blackwater, Crouch, Thames, mean we have to do longer distances to get to locations hence longer boats are advised 16-17ft means you will be able to keep up and get to more locations.
Hv High volume for very heavy paddlers or those that are loading for camping weekends.
MV medium volume best by far for most paddlers
LV low volume lighter paddlers
in order of which I would purchase
Best plastic sea kayak P&H Scorpio mk2 mv (medium volume)
Scorpio mk 1
Valley etain mv is best hv also good
Perception essence 16, & 17 16 for lighter 17 for loading very solid boats
Capella lots of modals square hatch oldest but still good round hatches on recent better boats
Glass fibre boats Kevlar carbon is more expensive stiffer and just that bit better but not as strong
Again in order
P&H Cetus by far the best stable fast mv Lv hv. MV suits most paddlers best
Valley etain MV
NDK Nigel Dennis explorer mv is a very good boat
North shore explorer is another good boat.
There are a number of other good boats out there if unsure just ask for advice this list should be useful if looking to buy second-hand kayaks.
Hi All Equipment advice touring kayaks
Further recommendations Looking at touring kayaks which covers a wide variety of kayaks so a few words of advice.
Touring kayaks were the 14ft kayaks which are fine for up down the local deep water canals. If you are planning to tour on the sea get a sea kayak. There has been recent changes in the size of touring kayaks with the introduction of manufacturers fitting drop-down skegs to white water kayaks leading to the development of the
Pyranha fusion is a very popular kayak that can also be used on white water so could play in the weirs if you get adventurous but not that fast in a straight line so no use for distance trips. These hold their value well so a very safe purchase comes with a nice sealed hatch mv (medium volume) tends to be the more practical size for most paddlers.
Wave sport ethos is wave sports version of the fusion again a good boat with good build quality. Again more white water cross-over than traditional touring, but ideal if you aim to play in the weirs
Dagger Blackwater & Charleston these are touring/sea boats advice get a proper sea kayak
Venture eskey 15 &17 are nice boats 17 are no longer made but do come up occasionally and are a good buy the 15ft are also very good and are often used on sea trips you will work harder to keep up but can be done these are very good on our local canals and again hold their value well, so you won’t lose if you upgrade later.
Hope this helps