From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Inland paddling
Post Reply
Arthur
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Near Cheltenham
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 2 times

From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Arthur » Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:50 am

Hi Everyone.

I'd appreciate your views on which general purpose plastic kayak to buy.

I moved house a few years ago and live near to the rivers Wye, Severn and Avon - and have paddled an open canoe on the latter twice a week for the last couple of years.

I recently bought a composite sea kayak, but after the rush of blood to the head, I realise I'm probably only going to use it in the sea once a month (and probably not for overnight use), with the rest of the time on the rivers. (I sold the open canoe to fund the sea kayak... mistake... I'll buy another one later in the year.)

As well as regular hour-long keep fit session on flat water, I'd like to do some low grade white water (Wye) and learn to paddle rock gardens (from Dorset to Pembrokeshire), this season. I might do a couple of overnight camping trips during the year, so a hatch for 'light touring' would be necessary. I'm just under 15 stone and pretty fit.

NB. I had a Perception Expression 11 a few years ago for this purpose, but it had too little volume for me and was inefficient.

Please comment on my 'a bit of everything' shortlist... :

1. Pyranha Fusion large
2. Dagger Stratos 14.5
3. Jackson Karma RG
4. Wavesport Ethos 10


I lean from one to another, depending on which way the wind blows... so please help me make my mind up.

Thanks in advance.
Last edited by Arthur on Fri Feb 02, 2018 11:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

Arthur
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Near Cheltenham
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 2 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Arthur » Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:57 am

PS. I'm selling my Valley Sirona composite for this, but I do really like that boat. I thought about adding the plastic version to the shortlist, but I think it might be a bit long for a non-expert on WW rivers?

Arthur
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Near Cheltenham
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 2 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Arthur » Sat Feb 03, 2018 12:05 pm

134 views and no opinions (apart from one PM)... come on guys, help me out!

Sean_soup
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2016 2:17 pm
Been thanked: 3 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Sean_soup » Sat Feb 03, 2018 1:37 pm

It looks like a classic case of n+1 to me.

I probably only paddle on the sea once a month too. Bit more in the summer, bit less in the winter. The sea is a bit of a schlep from here.

But you won't catch me ditching my sea kayak any time soon in favour of a boat I can paddle on a river too. (Any more than you'll catch me ditching my WW boat in favour of something I can kinda-sorta also paddle on the sea.) Sometimes what you need for two different courses is two different horses. ;-)

User avatar
Adrian Cooper
Posts: 9629
Joined: Thu Apr 25, 2002 2:26 pm
Location: Buckinghamshire
Been thanked: 3 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Adrian Cooper » Sat Feb 03, 2018 6:44 pm

I've not paddled so many of these crossover boats but I am surprised you found the Expression inefficient, it is designed as a stable tourer. If I was going to pick a boa which would do touring and 'rock gardens' I think I would opt for something a little shorter, along the lines of the Fusion but I might be more tempted by the Dagger Katana, there is something reassuring about the shape. I am sure the Ethos would also do the job. Not familiar with the Karma.

Happy hunting

Arthur
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Near Cheltenham
Has thanked: 4 times
Been thanked: 2 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Arthur » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:38 pm

Thanks guys. N+1 is probably right, but I only want one kayak, to add to my one bike, one fly fishing rod, one guitar... in other words, lots of thing I like to do and none of them justify a collection. On the basis that I'm not going to specialise or devote all my time to paddling, the reality is I'd probably be good with any of the kayaks on my list... kind of answering my own question, but input has been helpful, thanks.


PS. Adrian - the Expression 11 is quite low volume (compared to my list) for a 15 stone paddler - digs in when stepping on the gas - that's what I meant by inefficient. At pottering speed it was a really nice little boat.
.
.

Yew
Posts: 464
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 8:26 pm

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Yew » Sun Feb 04, 2018 12:25 pm

All of the boats you've selected seem suitable for what you want to use them for. Or you could pick something cheap off ebay for use in the river/surf?

Mrstratos61
Posts: 122
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2017 11:16 pm
Has thanked: 10 times
Been thanked: 12 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Mrstratos61 » Sun Feb 04, 2018 9:06 pm

I have been happy using a stratos in sea and rivers.

User avatar
TechnoEngineer
Posts: 3328
Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 7:47 pm
Location: Berks, Hants, Essex

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by TechnoEngineer » Sun Feb 04, 2018 10:08 pm

If you wish to paddle rock gardens in the sea, you need a sea kayak with lots of rocker for manouevrability. For rivers you need a proper river runner.

I once owned a Dagger Approach and it did both flat water and rivers but not very well, and I received a lot of flak from the other people in the WW group.
XL-Burn-3 / Monstar / Kodiak / My Videos

SimonMW
Posts: 2174
Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2010 11:39 pm
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by SimonMW » Mon Feb 05, 2018 9:41 am

As others have said, one boat won't do it all. Well, you can *make* any given boat do those different things, but it won't do them well, will most likely hold back your skill development in any given area, and won't be as fun as more focussed hull designs. It's like when people claim they can have as much fun and do everything they can do on a wave or hole in their creeker as they can in a playboat*. They might convince themselves, but nobody else!

Franky
Posts: 466
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 9:07 am
Been thanked: 7 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Franky » Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:31 am

My advice is:
1. Buy a kayak for the sort of thing you expect to do most often (lower-grade river running by the sound of it in your case).
2. Join a club.
3. Borrow or hire specialised boats for anything else you do from the club.
4. When you've saved up enough, buy another boat.
5. Repeat steps 3. and 4. indefinitely.

That has worked for me for years!

Whitey1
Posts: 422
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 6:13 pm
Location: Pyrenees
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Whitey1 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:00 am

If I were to choose one boat from the list it would be the Jackson........but it's expensive! Have you seen this video https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=y1aLHlwerkE

So since RG is for rock garden it should be good in.....rock gardens. And since the hull is the same (exact same?) to their Karma unlimited which wins whitewater races ( the paddlers are quite good too to be fair) it should be good in........whitewater. Personally though, I don't think I could hack a great long boat for running most rivers in the UK. Carrying the things for a start isn't a lot of fun! So as others have said, maybe n+1, and since you already have the sea boat, maybe join a club to get some experience of river boats before making a knowledgeable choice. Good used boats can be bought for about 1/3 rd price of new if you don't need it to be cosmetically excellent.

JimT
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:31 pm
Has thanked: 5 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by JimT » Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:15 am

This is exactly the tread I was going to start, same interests and same choice of boats. I’ve tried the fusion and the stratos and would lean towards the stratos however prefer the idea of a boat along the dimensions of the Jackson but as said it’s expensive. My local shop in the SW only appears to have them in as special orders so none to take out for a try.

Whitey1
Posts: 422
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 6:13 pm
Location: Pyrenees
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 1 time

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by Whitey1 » Wed Feb 21, 2018 8:57 am

This is exactly the tread I was going to start, same interests and same choice of boats. I’ve tried the fusion and the stratos and would lean towards the stratos however prefer the idea of a boat along the dimensions of the Jackson but as said it’s expensive. My local shop in the SW only appears to have them in as special orders so none to take out for a try.
You may be in luck JimT. On Arthur's other thread he was offered an RG for £600 from ringmaster, based in Bristol. Maybe Worth checking if it's still available.

JimT
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:31 pm
Has thanked: 5 times

Re: From rock gardens to rivers - advice please

Post by JimT » Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:00 pm

Whitey1 wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 8:57 am
This is exactly the tread I was going to start, same interests and same choice of boats. I’ve tried the fusion and the stratos and would lean towards the stratos however prefer the idea of a boat along the dimensions of the Jackson but as said it’s expensive. My local shop in the SW only appears to have them in as special orders so none to take out for a try.
You may be in luck JimT. On Arthur's other thread he was offered an RG for £600 from ringmaster, based in Bristol. Maybe Worth checking if it's still available.
Think I'm sorted now as well, thanks.

Post Reply