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Old 01-29-2008   #1
 
SWVA, Virginia
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2
New to forum and sport

Hey everybody,
I have always wanted to get into whitewater kayaking but have never broke down and spent the money to get started. I am finally going to learn and am looking for any advice as to what gear, boat, paddle, etc. would be best for me. I will be sticking to class I-III rivers for now but would like a boat that I can grow into instead of something that I have to turn around and upgrade in a short period of time. Thanks for any help.

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Old 01-29-2008   #2
 
oh yeah
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 539
welcome aboard...the opinion train!
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Old 01-29-2008   #3
 
SWVA, Virginia
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2
Yea I knew that this would be like opening Pandora's Box but any advice is better than any knowledge that I currently have.
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Old 01-29-2008   #4
 
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Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,507
dude my best suggestion. buy cheap gear that you can beat up, lose, destroy. and then buy the goods after a season or 2 but buy cheap shit. boatertalk.com is a better site for you if you live east coast. later.
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Old 01-29-2008   #5
 
Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 536
lots of good 101 info here:

How to Purchase a Kayak
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Old 01-29-2008   #6
 
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Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1984
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,888
My suggestion-

This winter, sign up for roll sessions that keep part of the pool open for non-instructional roll practice. Not only can you try the school's boats; you can take a close look at all the other boats that show up. Plus, you'll meet other beginners, and you might even get to try out different boats if folks will let you. Then purchase a boat later this spring when the swaps start up- you'll have a good idea what fits & is comfortable, and you can probably avoid making a bad purchase.

Also- If I were learning all over again, there's one thing that I would splurge on to make the trial and error process (read: swimming) a LOT more tolerable- a dry suit.
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Old 01-29-2008   #7
 
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West of Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1998
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 681
Don't go to the darkside and buy a kayak! Anyone and everyone paddles those darn things.

I recommend a nice open canoe, like an Mad River Outrage or Bell Ocoee, for Class II-III water, you will love it!
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Old 01-29-2008   #8
 
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The Road, Colorado
Paddling Since: '07
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 610
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Craigslist man. I bought a functional but ugly setup last year about this time that included a boat, paddle, splashtop, helmet(s), pfd plus some other goodies for ~$450. I have replaced a lot of the stuff already but it got my foot in the door for a reasonable price and if I hadn't liked it or picked it up I wouldn't be out much if any money if I ended up reselling it.

Other then that find something that is easy to roll. Your going to end up with 2-3 kayaks in a year or two anyway and that isn't a bad thing as long as you arn't wasting money buying new boats.
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