How To Buy A Kayak
It is important for novice boaters to know how to buy a kayak. Buying a kayak isn't as simple as walking into a store and picking your favourite colour. A kayaker should first consider how they plan to use their boat, and what methods of storage and transportation are available to them.
When learning how to buy a kayak, you will need:
- An idea of what type of kayaking you enjoy-white water, sea, down river, or recreational kayaking
- A store or catalog to view the different kayak structures-fiber glass or plastic, folding boats, Inflatable boats
- Consider how each kayak is used. A white water kayak is short, to help boaters navigate around rocks and through rapids. This type of boat can only be used for white water because it is difficult to travel in a straight line.
- The long boats used for sea kayaking are quite different from white water kayaks. A sea kayak, or touring kayak, is long and moves well in a straight line. It is not capable of making the sharp turns needed when kayaking down a rocky river.
- Down river kayaking uses long narrow boats, similar to sea kayaks. Like sea kayaks they are difficult to turn. This type of kayak is suitable for rivers with a wide deep path. If you are a novice, avoid this kayak because it tips easily.
- When learning how to buy a kayak, the recreational kayak is the most versatile option. Recreational kayaks are shorter and rounder than sea kayaks, so they have excellent manoeuvrability, while still allowing boaters to paddle in a straight line. This style of boat can be used for down river and sea kayaking.
- Once you have chosen the style of kayak you wish to purchase, your next step is to choose the structure. A hard body kayak is the most popular structure. This can be made off fiber glass, plastic or wood. Fiber glass and plastic kayaks are easy to locate at local sporting goods stores. This boat style can take a beating. The downfall is that it is difficult to store and transport due to size and weight.
- Folding boats are ideal when storage space and transportation are a major consideration, so keep this in mind as you learn how to buy a kayak. This collapsible kayak is made of an aluminum or wooden skeleton with a canvas and rubber skin. Inflatable sections help keep the boat afloat. Although this boat is a wonderful alternative when short on space, boaters pay the price in time as construction and deconstruction takes at least an hour on both ends.
- Inflatable kayaks are the cheapest option when learning how to buy a kayak. This type of kayak is not as durable as the other structures; however it is easy to store and assemble.