canoeing vs kayaking

Discuss water related activities. fishing, canoeing, kayaking, sailing.
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irrationalsolutions
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Location: South Carolina

canoeing vs kayaking

Postby irrationalsolutions » Wed Jan 21, 2009 3:14 pm

now that we have a good place for this. what are the pros and cons of each. i grew up on a lake but am sad to say that i dont have much experience with either. most of the time i was in a 18ft ski boat and the smallest thing i have used enough to know about is a amul. pond boat. i tend to like the pond boats now for fishing. they dont go as fast but with the shallow draft line i can get it places most other boats cant go. i also know i can pack myself and another and all the gear for a week in it and take off on the lake (which i still dont live far from). however, i would like to hear from some of our experienced floaters on canoes and kayaks. these have always interested me a great deal and i and i am sure others here would like more info on them.

some basic questions i have are (for a starting point)...
which for which environment.
how to pick a size.
what materials work best.
and the general pros and cons of each.

this is of particular intrest to me since i would like to starting floating some trips in the future and the pond boat is too bulky for me alone.
“Do or do not... there is NO try.” Yoda

Luke "Whats in (out) there?" Yoda "Only what you take with you."

Luke "I can’t believe it." Yoda "That is why you Fail.”

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DarenN
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Location: Surrey, B.C. Canada

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby DarenN » Wed Jan 21, 2009 6:02 pm

kayaks are faster and more easily driven than canoes.
canoes can carry a lot more gear.
kayaks handle better in rough water and have a lot less windage than canoes.
canoes can be more comfortable. you can change your position for a break, or stretch out a bit. in a kayak you are sitting in the seat and that's that.
gear packed in a kayaks water-tight hatches stays dry no matter what.
(i'm sure there is more but i've never tried to compare the two craft before.)

material choices.
in production boats you have two major choices. fiberglass or roto-molded poly.
poly: virtually indestructable. lower cost. heavier.
fiberglass: not as tough as poly. higher cost. lighter weight.

size:
most companies can tell you what the "design waterline displacement" is. that is: how much weight does it take to put the craft "on her lines". designers design boats to a pre-chosen waterline and will know the weight it takes to put her there. weight of the paddler + weight of the boat + weight of gear = design displacement. this is NOT the maximum that the boat can safely carry. a kayak whos displacement just equals the paddler plus the boat will still be 'safe as houses' with another 50+ pounds added.

Daren....
"I'd rather be happy than right." Slartibartfast

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lite hiker
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Location: Philadelphia

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby lite hiker » Wed Jan 21, 2009 7:35 pm

i have done week long canoeing and weekend kayak trips and there are a lot of factors. On white water kayak I will take a any day. canoes are easier on flat water in my opinion especially if you have a partner. If you are only going for a small amount of time and your an minimalist like me than a kayak is fine however if you are going for a longer time and need more room canoes are better. there are also different types of kayaks. See and lake kayaks have more room and are less maneuverable but white water kayaks hold less stuff but are much more maneuverable. The materials also make a difference. Kayaks are for my knowledge only make out of plastic. Canoes can be aluminum, wood, or fiberglass. On the matter of water tightness there is no victor. In a canoe you have to use dry bags which will keep you gear dry for about a minute under water. Kayaks have small chambers that are prone to leaking but if tight will keep your gear dry even if it sinks.

In the end its all preference, for long trips canoes win in my favor but if you go for a short trip kayaks can be a lot of fun.
Ask a stupid question Get a stupid answer.

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DarenN
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Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby DarenN » Wed Jan 21, 2009 7:40 pm

lite hiker;
kayaks are available in ALL materials that canoes are available in; with the exception of aluminum.

i've done 10 day trips in sea kayaks. i know several people that have stayed out for a month at a time.

Daren.....
"I'd rather be happy than right." Slartibartfast

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russb
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Location: New York

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby russb » Wed Jan 21, 2009 8:53 pm

Great descriptions all around. One major difference I didn't see mentioned (if it was I missed it) is that canoes are much more easily carried on a portage.

I have a Hurricane Tampico XL kayak and a Bell Bucktail canoe.

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irrationalsolutions
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Location: South Carolina

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby irrationalsolutions » Wed Jan 21, 2009 9:03 pm

this is some good info. ya'll have answered a bunch of questions. something else is cost. i havent looked around in a while but do any of you know off the top of you heads about what a decent set-up for each costs?
“Do or do not... there is NO try.” Yoda

Luke "Whats in (out) there?" Yoda "Only what you take with you."

Luke "I can’t believe it." Yoda "That is why you Fail.”

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DarenN
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Location: Surrey, B.C. Canada

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby DarenN » Wed Jan 21, 2009 9:13 pm

russb wrote:Great descriptions all around. One major difference I didn't see mentioned (if it was I missed it) is that canoes are much more easily carried on a portage.

I have a Hurricane Tampico XL kayak and a Bell Bucktail canoe.


that kinda depends on the kayak. with a kayak that has the balance point right nicely in the cockpit it can be carried very easily on one shoulder. i've also carried a light skin-on-frame balanced upside down on top of my head. vision was quite limited and i was told it looked rather comical. :mrgreen:

production kayaks currently in my stable:
Current Designs Solstice (roto-molded plastic)
Necky Chatham 18 (fiberglass)
and a 10 foot Zodiak style inflatable boat.

Daren.....
"I'd rather be happy than right." Slartibartfast

DaddyMnM
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Location: Seattle

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby DaddyMnM » Thu Jan 22, 2009 2:18 am

I live in Seattle which has several lakes and sheltered salt water access nearby. I started with canoes, but I prefer kayaks even on flat water because they are more efficient and stable. This is in part because I have always used 2 man sea kayaks. I defray the cost some by not buying new. My first kayak was purchased used from a local kayak guide service which has a yearly sale when they upgrade their boats. It was a 2 man Seascape purchased for $900. I paddled it for a couple years, and then sold it for $600. Not a bad investment. My current ride was home built by my wife and me from a kit. I don't have many pictures handy, but here is a link to the kit I purchased:

http://www.pygmyboats.com/mall/OSP3SPEC.asp

Image

This boat is a stitch and glue design which was reasonably easy to make (even my wife and I ended up with a successful build) and is light enough for me and my wife to put on a car top. It is a big boat, but we had two small kids and a dog when we built it, and we all fit. I bought a second roto-molded plastic boat when the kids grew out of the center cockpit:

http://www.countryskiandsports.com/PADDLE/PADDLE%20--%20KAYAKS/OLD%20TOWN%20KAYAK/OLD%20TOWN%20-%20loon160%20TANDEM.gif

The pygmy kayak handles like a dream. The loon is a real pain. The plastic hull doesn't track well and it has no rudder so I must work harder to keep a straight line. The pygmy is a true sea kayak and I have skirts and socks so it can safely be taken out on open salt water. Socks limit the amount of water the boat can take on. You slip in and sit in the sock. These are used because we did not put bulkheads in the boat to serve the same purpose. The loon is one big open cockpit and stays near shore on protected fresh water lakes and channels. Both kayaks have large cockpit openings so even a height challenged guy such as myself with a little girth can get in and out OK.

The University of Washington is on Lake Washington and rents aluminum canoes. These are very stable and easy to paddle. They are great for a brief paddle in the nearby channels into the marshes. They take lots of gear, are easy to get in and out of, and can easily take 1, 2, or 3 people. Kayaks can only take the number of people for which they are designed. The canoes are a little scary because you have to cross a busy boat channel to get to the quiet water and back, and they would sink like a rock if swamped.

hoz
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Location: USA

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby hoz » Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:10 am

I am a canoeist, both solo and tandem. I have built, paddled and even sailed canoes. Over the years I've also owned several production models from various manufacturers. I paddle flat lakes and wild wilderness rivers. For a canoe tripper Canada is where it's at, everything else is just practice.

A beginner can buy a kayak and start paddling around easier than a canoe. One reason there are so many recreational yaks today. To paddle a canoe well several strokes must be mastered. A seasoned kayaker has some of these strokes also. But most beginners can make do with paddling on one side then the other.

If you are starting the first question you need to ask is what do you intend to do with the boat? Then buy what most fits your purpose.

hoz
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:44 am
Location: USA

Re: canoeing vs kayaking

Postby hoz » Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:12 am

DaddyMnM wrote: The canoes are a little scary because you have to cross a busy boat channel to get to the quiet water and back, and they would sink like a rock if swamped.


All canoes sold today must have built in floatation to keep them from sinking "like a rock".


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