For over 4,000 years, people around the world have used kayaks on rivers, lakes, and oceans. Whether you are fishing for dinner or exploring a beautiful natural waterway, a traditional or fishing kayak can be a useful and enjoyable mode of transportation.How do you choose a kayak?
Carefully consider these factors when selecting your boat.
- Your kayaking location: It is helpful to know if you will be using your boat and paddle on small lakes or large oceans. In rough areas, you need a maneuverable boat that will not tip while a stable boat is helpful if you are mostly going fishing in your kayak.
- Your partners: Decide whether you want to go alone or with a partner before you get the boat.
- Your skill: Wider boats are more stable in the water while long, narrow vessels tend to be more maneuverable. Sit-on-top boats have holes that drain off water, making them self-bailing.
- Local weather: Users tend to get wetter in sit-on-top boats, so check local weather and water temperature when choosing your kayak.
Dimensions will vary depending on which type of boat you select. Long-distance options tend to be between 16 and 19 feet in length. Playboaters who want to do tricks require a highly maneuverable boat that is about 5 to 6 feet long. Boats for use on whitewater rivers are generally around 8 feet in length. A fishing kayak measures between 10 and 13 feet long.What are the differences between kayak types?
These are some of the categories of watercraft that are available. Some of them are in the sit-on-top kayak category while others are sit-in style.
- Traditional: A single paddler sits inside this type of recreational kayak.
- Sit on Top: This type allows you to sit on top to paddle.
- Two Person: A longer option, sometimes referred to as a tandem kayak, it has space and rod holders that allow two passengers with paddles to fit.
- Inflatable kayak: Inflatable kayak options can be collapsed for carrying and storage.
- Kayak: Sometimes called an angler kayak, this boat is used for fishing or hunting. It has space for extra gear and paddles.
The material used to create the watercraft and paddles can affect the weight and maneuverability of your kayak. These types of boats come in many different materials, including the following options.
- Wood: This material is lightweight, and is suitable for kayaking in still or calm water.
- Fiberglass: Fiberglass is frequently used because it’s lightweight.
- Polyethylene: This is a form of plastic that can be used to create molded boats with paddles that are larger and heavier than the typical option.
- Synthetic composites: There are a variety of other synthetic materials that can be layered to meet a range of specifications. Some composite options for kayaks and paddles include styrene, ABS, and graphite fibers.