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Old 08-20-2012   #1
Lynnwood, Washington
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
New guy looking for advice

My brother-in-law and I are looking into getting into Kayaking to stay active/in shape. Neither of us know a whole lot about the sport other than it looks like a ton of fun. We are both former professional motocrossers and I am big into snowmobiling still so we are both pretty athletic and have the go for it attitude.

I want to make sure we get proper equipment and dont get in over our heads, but at the same time I do not want to buy a kayak I will out-grow immediately.
Lately I have been looking at the Dagger Axis 12.0, it looks like and sounds like a great all around kayak from what I have read. Are there any kayaks you guys would recommend, some comparable to the Dagger, any of that?


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Old 08-21-2012   #2
WetExit's Avatar
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 72
I guess it depends on what kind of kayaking you want to do. Based on your location I'm guessing it could be anything (sea, lake, river, or whitewater). If it's more technical like sea or whitewater, I'd ask a pro in person.

As someone that's fairly new to whitewater kayaking that didn't know anyone into the hobby, I gotta say that nothing helps more than taking a lesson or two from seasoned instructor. You can research for days on the internet, but it doesn't beat a few hours of advice on the river.

Go out a couple of times with an instructor or someone that knows what they're doing, and pick their brains. It'll do a ton of good in figuring out what boat, equipment, etc. is best for you.

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Old 08-21-2012   #3
Jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1966
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 427 Discussion Forum

Linked is a great place for first kayak advice, some very patient and knowledgeable folks -- main empahsis isn't whitewater. Always good to post details of type of water you want to paddle as well as your size. Good luck!
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Old 08-21-2012   #4
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Lakewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,234
Hit up the local paddling shop and inquire about classes. Usually there are pool classes offered through out the winter and they usually provide boats so you can get a feel for different boats. If it's flat water or ocean paddling, look for the local clubs and start there.
On the river, I can abandon who I am and what I've done. However brief it lasts, while on the river I am nothing important and everything insignificant. I am flotsam, and happy to be so.
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Old 08-21-2012   #5
Lynnwood, Washington
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
Thanks for the quick replies guys! I will look into all of these options.

We are most interested in lake riding, there are a ton of great spots around here, but we also want to work our way into whitewater, that is definitely the bigger draw for us! Depending on how into this we get I am sure more boats will be acquired for some surf/sea riding among other types also.

I am 5'10, 160 lbs with a 32" inseam and the other guy is 5'10, 180 lbs with a 34" inseam.
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Old 08-21-2012   #6
Abron Cabron
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Santa Fe, Nuevo Mexico
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 594
If you are interested in whitewater... you will be soon enough....
Take a least a couple legitimate lessons, take a Swiftwater Rescue class ASAP (after lessons), and possibly even a rafting guide school if you ever want to row a raft...(best family option, down the line)
professorpaddle. (net or com..?) WA kayak forum

PDXkayaker is a Portland area yahoo group... both really good local PNW groups to meet people to paddle with and to find out where to take lessons... to get you pumped.
Get a river running oriented kayak unless you're determined to playboat sooner then later. You won't outgrow it so much as you'll determine preferences as you learn...
Jackson Hero, liquid logic Remix, WS Diesel, JK Zen are all good river runners.... my preference is strongly biased towards Jacksons. they are good beginner boats.(and good expert boats too.) just my preference. LL are really nice too.
look for a used boat that is @ 4 years old or less til you really get comfortable with kayaking. and try to demo a model before you buy it. and look for all your gear used will make it much more reasonable to get all the items you need. (its a gear intensive sport...but not as bad as motocross i bet...)
just a couple things to think about. Good luck! you will love it, and PNW is a top tier place to be a kayaker.....
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Old 08-22-2012   #7
Lynnwood, Washington
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
Wow, that is a lot of info to take in, I have a ton to learn before I get too far into this! Thank you for the links, and some direction on models to look at
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Old 08-23-2012   #8
Jackson, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 1966
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 427
You said most interested in lakes and working into WW. Well, there really are very different boats for those different waters; you make some serious compromises if you try to get a boat that will do both. Then, you threw in ocean -- sorry to say, that is even a different boat (though you could get a boat that would be okay for lake and ocean). Probably good to try out different waters/boats -- rent, go out on guided trips/lessons. My first kayak was a Necky Manitou 14 -- the reason being that it would be good for lakes and for rivers -- but not serious WW -- so, it was versatile in the general direction I wanted to go at the time. The reason I got into the kayak thing in the first place was my wife arranged a multi-day guided river trip in boats like that ("touring kayaks") and we had a blast. I'm not trying to steer you in that direction, just showing you some ways to get into it and to think about it. Folks often say, go out and get some "seat time" in various types of kayaks before buying. Another often-stated is: buy a used boat first because you will likely want a different boat after some seat time -- you could sell that first boat w/o losing much -- or keep it as a back up for friends. This forum is very WW-oriented, and that's fine, but you did mention lakes first -- recall, I mentioned the forum.
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Old 08-24-2012   #9
Lynnwood, Washington
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
I understand the difference in kayak design for the different types of paddling, and I am definitely hoping to find something used to start with. WW will come eventually, right now the main focus is on deeper rivers with only maybe a few rapids, and primarily lake riding. I mentioned knowing that a different boat completely will be a good idea if I get into riding the ocean too.

I really do appreciate all of the feedback and have been looking around at a ton of site with your guys guidance already. I think lakes are the main focus as of now though, there are some absolutely beautiful lakes here in Wa that I cannot wait to paddle!!
I am going to look into rentals too, I have never really paddled in anything spectacular yet...

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