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Old 02-23-2016   #1
rivervibe's Avatar
Salida, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 379
Werner Stikine vs Sherpa Carbon

I'm looking for opinions. I'm in the market for a new Werner paddle and I'm looking at the Stikine and the Sherpa Carbon. Here's my issue... I've been paddling a Sho-Gun (711 sq cm) for several years and am very used to the awesomeness of the foam core blade. Now I'm looking for a smaller blade size, but I worry that the Stikine (656 sq cm) will feel too small as I'm really a fan of the bite of a full sized blade. Now, the Sherpa (680 sq cm) size feels like it would be correct for my paddling style, but it's not the foam core blade.

So my questions for discussions are: 1) Would I ever really notice the size difference between the the Stikine and Sherpa? 2) If anyone has used both types of blades recently, do you really find an appreciable difference in the feel on the water (ie, the do you notice that the blades of the non-foam core paddles aren't as buoyant?)

Discuss... Thank you!

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Old 02-23-2016   #2
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
I've never paddled a foam core full time, but have borrowed them. You can feel a difference, but I'm not convinced it really makes that much difference in the grant scheme of things. If you're relying on the extra buoyancy to roll, you've got bigger problems. I think you will notice the difference in surface area between the Shogun and Sherpa.

Here's more food for thought - the non-foam core Werner blades will wear much faster than the Shogun. If you start with a Powerhouse, after a year of paddling you may have a (slightly misshapen) Sherpa.

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Old 02-23-2016   #3
spack171's Avatar
Sylva, Western North Carolina
Paddling Since: 1981
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 66
I currently paddle with the Stikine and Sherpa fiberglass. I cannot tell much of a difference in the Stikine and Sherpa size. The Stikine feels lighter than the Sherpa, but I can't say the buoyancy factor means much to me. I've also paddled with the Powerhouse and notice the smaller blades make my shoulders happier. I paddle Class III-IV whitewater over a hundred days a year, so I use my gear. Hope this helps.
Steve Pack
Sylva, NC
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Old 02-23-2016   #4
BV, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2011
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 131

Go for the Stikine. One of the best paddles I have used. The Carbon Sherpa is more durable in the long run, but the way the Stikine cuts through the water is unmatched. The difference in blade size is hardly noticeable on the water. Let me know if you have any other questions. I have used both paddles extensively.
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Old 02-23-2016   #5
rivervibe's Avatar
Salida, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 379
Thanks for all the info! While I'm certainly not using the buoyancy of the foam core to roll, I think it does have its place, especially when cranking out distance while trying to maintain a fast cadence by releasing so smoothly from the water at your hip.
Please take a look at my Photo Web Gallery.
I also have here some gear reviews (that I might update soon).
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