With kayaks becoming increasingly popular, many people are looking to upgrade their current kayak. Whether you are looking for a better boat or just want to buy a new one, there are several things that need to be considered when upgrading your kayak.
In this blog post we will discuss the considerations needed before making any decision about buying a kayak and what to look for in an upgraded kayak!
The Type Of Kayak You Want To Buy
What type of kayak you prefer? Sit-on-top kayaks are generally more stable, while fishing kayaks will have a wider beam and additional features. If you want to go recreational paddling, then the choice is up to you!
What type of kayak do you prefer? Sit-on-top kayaks are typically less expensive than tandem kayaks because they only need one sitter (you) in order for it to be used instead of needing two like with other types. Fishing boats tend to cost much more due to their size and added features such as rod holders and storage areas that can’t be found on typical recreational or sit-in kayaks.
Where You Plan To Use The Kayak
Where are you going paddle is also going to be another important factor that you need to take into consideration. If you plan on using it in open water, then a sit-in kayak is not the best option for you because they are costly and are a bit on the heavier side. But if you are only going to use your kayak on lakes or rivers, then most likely any kayak type will work just fine for what you need – but investing in something that can hold two people might be worth looking into as well.
If you plan on using it around anything with waves such as an ocean, then make sure the kayak has good stability and has got features like a skeg.
Do You Need Any Additional Accessories
Just upgrading the kayak with fancy accessories is not enough. You need to buy a paddle as well. There are three types of kayak paddles available in the market – single person, dual-person and tandem.
Single Person Paddle
A single paddle allows you to propel the kayak with one arm at a time only while holding onto the boat for balance. This type would be good for someone who is not very strong or maybe doesn’t want to invest in buying another set just yet (if they can find a used one somewhere maybe even on craigslist).
The Dual-Person paddle enables two people to paddle. This type is good for someone who has a stronger partner with them or if they are planning on kayaking with friends. This is deemed as a better choice because it means you have more leverage when your hands get tired from all the work (less chance for an accident)!
The Tandem paddle enables two people to paddle. Same as above but this time both partners can sit side by side in order to propel through the water which is considerably easier than one person doing all the hard work alone!
How Often Or How Far Do You Plan On Going Out Into The Water?
How far you planning to paddle with your new boat is another consideration to make, as kayaks can range from quite short and nimble (perfect for a quick trip out on the water) to large and stable.
Finally, if you’re going to be paddling in open currents or areas that have waves – such as where rivers empty into oceans, then consider getting some type of spray skirt.
Is It Lightweight
The kayak has to be extremely lightweight otherwise, you will end up hurting your back. It also has to be easy to transport because you may not want to hassle with getting a kayak cart.
You should always measure your car and compare that measurement against the kayak’s measurements before purchasing!
Is It Comfortable?
Comfort is one area where you should not make any compromises. Look at the kayak’s seat and see if it is adjustable or not.
Some seats can be tilted to help your back, while others are too flat, which will cause you a lot of pain after paddling for an hour in choppy water!
You should also check out how wide the kayaks cockpit opening is so that those with larger waists have more space.
The last thing you want when sitting down on this boat is to feel like your waist has been boxed-in by its walls!
How Much Storage Space is Available?
Kayak should have enough storage space otherwise you will have to make two trips back and forth from the shore.
The kayak you buy should also be able to carry your gear, water bottles, clothing for camp, etc. One way around a storage problem is buying a larger kayak that can hold more cargo!
Another possibility is including an external storage system in or on the kayak such as: bungee cords-there are many models of these types of devices available. Mesh nets help keep items close at hand while preventing them from bouncing out when paddling hard into waves. Dry bags-a good idea if there’s any chance anything inside could get wet (food/clothes); baskets-attachable pouches made of nylon webbing with handles
What It is Made of
Some Kayaks are made from:
- Carbon fiber
Others are made of wood, such as: cedar, oak, or Douglas fir. These types of kayaks will have a natural look and feel to them which is appealing for those who want their boat to be “green”
There’s no right answer when choosing the material that best suits your needs because it depends on what you’re looking for in terms of performance (i.e., speed), weight, price point etc. For example: plastics won’t absorb water like other materials; however they also don’t dry out quickly if left outside. Wood is an excellent choice but it makes the kayak heavy.
Arthur G. Moore is a veteran paddler. He has over 10 years of whitewater kayaking experience in his kitty. When he was young, he used to love kayaking in rapid III and rapid IV but as time went on, he decided to concentrate mainly on covering long distances on a standard touring kayak. He is currently working as a senior editor for Kayak Manual.