Melba Kayak May 03rd, 2018 - 10:29:41
Tips for Transport: Always give the kayak a good push and pull before driving away to make sure you are secure. As a general rule if you can rock the vehicle without the kayak shifting on its perch than you are fine. If the kayak is sliding back and forth on the bars or in the carriers than you need to go back and tighten the straps. If using straps with auto-lock buckles, always put a half hitch in the strapping after tying down to insure that even if the buckle loosens the strap will not come lose. If using ratchet style tie downs it is very easy to over-tighten and do damage to the kayak. So make sure that the kayak is snug, but dont go overboard. When transporting in a flat bed pickup dont choose places on the kayak to fasten to that can fail - like the handles. We recommend passing the straps through the scupper holes of the kayak and tying that off in the bed of the truck. Some cars roof areas can compress/dent in when using foam blocks, these dents usually pop back out. Always try to place foam blocks on the strongest part of the roof (this will be the areas closer to the front and rear windows) Also, if you find that some part of your kayak is making contact with the roof after you tighten it down then placing a piece of rug or padding there is a good idea to protect the car from scratching.
What kind of kayaking will you be doing? You want to get a kayak that is well-suited for the type of kayaking you plan on doing most of the time. This is one of the most important factors youll need to consider; to determine what kind of paddling you will be doing and how often you will be doing it - White-Water (how advance), Touring, fishing, only ocean kayaking or just casual kayaking. There will be times you will try to do all three but just be cautious - especially if you start out with casual kayaking and then decide to go to Category IV Whitewater kayaking - make sure your kayak can handle Advance Whitewater kayaking. If you are a beginner or your skill level is not where you want it to be perhaps start out with a kayak that is geared to a more causal kayaking style/design with perhaps the rating to handle a mild to moderate whitewater level so as your skill levels improve you have a kayak that will get you to that level. When you get to the more seasoned pro level then trade it in for a kayak that can handle some serious white water rapids.
If you decide on a single (solo), make sure that it has enough storage capacity for whatever gear you are going to need and bring along. Space shouldnt be much of an issue for just afternoon kayaking, but if youre going to take long trips with your kayak (camping/fishing), adequate cargo capacity must be available. Dont forget about your seating needs you want it to be comfortable and supportive. Whitewater kayakers prefer a snug fit, while touring kayakers prefer something with more room, allowing room to stretch and change positions on longer trips. Check out kayaks that come with upgrade seating if you can afford it. Available Options A spray skirt, deck fittings, flotation bags and a handy holder for your water bottle are all options to consider. Having the right options can make a difference in your kayaking enjoyment.
But, as important as the structural makeup of the kayak is, kayaks are typically classified to the type of kayaking theyre designed to do. Kayaks built for touring are much different from those for whitewater paddling. There isnt any single kayak that will excel in every type of paddling category. As you shop for your kayak, you need to anticipate your future paddling style and then select a kayak that should perform well in that primary kayak category but also keep in mind your skill level and price range as well. Now there are kayaks out there - especially in the inflatable kayak category that lends itself better to multiple styles/designs then their counter parts. So if you are not sure if you will be using your kayak in any one particular category, consider some high quality companies like Sea Eagle, Innova, Airis and Advance Elements to name a few who use a lot of cross over inflatable kayaks to fit multiple needs. But keep in mind that they will not excel in all categories, they still focus on one particular category but do well in other categories better then most. So focus still on a particular category.