Enjoying the outdoors costs money. In the boating world, a custom boat can cost six figures. These boats are high quality vessels that serve a specific population…one that I started to explore. One thing to know is that getting on the water can be accomplished for less than $300. You read that correctly, less than $300 dollars.
In recent years, the number of kayakers on waterways has increased. The low entry cost combined with a sense of getting closer to nature has allowed the industry to grow. Kayaking can be an intense adrenaline rush by kayaking down fast moving rapids on rivers or more serene when kayaking on a lake. In addition, ocean kayaking offers additional opportunities to enjoy the water.
There are basically two types of kayaks. One is a sit on top design and the other is the type where your legs are inside the kayak and covered by the vessel. Renting the two types of kayaks prior to purchasing will help in seeing the benefits of each type.
I prefer sit on top kayaks. Using the kayaks in multiple settings has made me aware of the versatility of the sit on top style. I use my kayak on the ocean, in lakes and in rivers. My number one concern is getting to the surface quickly if the kayak capsizes. For this reason, I prefer a kayak where my legs are not restricted.
On a recent trip to Nags Head North Carolina as I was exiting my kayak, a wave developed with no warning signs and rolled the kayak over. I was able to easily recover since I was on a kayak rather than in a kayak. My kayak is a sunDolpin Journey 10 SS that listed for $279.
Kayaks can also have custom features to help an individual enjoy the water. For the person who likes to fish, kayaks offer built in rod holders and dry storage units. Other units are designed for heavy river rapids. Whether you are fishing from your kayak or just out birding, there is a kayak for you.
To ensure safety while operating a kayak, I highly recommend type V life preservers. It is important to wear life jackets to minimize the potential for devastating consequences if the kayak becomes inverted. The bulky life jackets used on larger boats are no longer necessary. A type V life jacket is a very thin life jacket that inflates automatically when it senses water or manually by a valve. On kayaks I prefer the manual type 5 life jackets so they don’t accidently inflate when they get wet. These life jackets are not bulky and increase safety by being warn rather than just on the kayak.
Like most hobbies, if kayaking has increased your desire for a larger watercraft, there is a host of options. In the boating world this is called 2 foot-itis. Everyone thinks that a boat just two foot longer will do the trick. The next thing you know… you are looking as those big boats trying to figure out how to get one.
Kayaking is a great way to get out of the house and on the water. Remember, to start on slow moving waters and move up to more challenging waterways.
Go have some fun out there!