Submitted: 01-02-2006 by Eric
This is a follow up to my 2002 post.
I've been using a Lendal with Kinetic Touring blades and a bent shaft since about 2001, and my passion for this stick hasn't changed. As I get better, I realize how good this thing really is. It's humbling, actually, to own a paddle that is always so much better than the paddler.
Since my last post, I bought a new version in lighter materials (carbon shaft with carbon/nylon blades, 4pc), but I'd feel confident having either in my hands. In fact, when I tried to go to the full carbon blades, I found them TOO light. The heft is part of what keeps me coming back - this paddle can take a beating.
I paddle a 22" boat, am 5'8" and use a 215cm shaft. I've found the paddle handles well whether taking a leisurely tour of area creeks or navigating 5 foot seas and surf. I admit I occasionally use Mystic blades if I'm just going out for some play in the surf, but otherwise you couldn't pry this paddle from my hands. My wife uses a Werner Ikelos, but as much as I like it (and I do like it) I could never switch. The surface area of the KT is ample for rolling but not overkill for long days of paddling. And Lendal's strong indexing makes finding the proper grip a cinch even while fish gazing.
Are there light paddles out there? Sure. Are there prettier ones? Probably. But the real question is: Would I bet my life (or my trip) on anything other than my Lendal? Definitely not.