I have had very similar damage on the hulls of my boats. Those cracks are very common from impacts around the bulkhead. If you do the repair yourself be sure to sand a bevel that goes down to the glass along the cracks (isnad the cracks out). Also bevel the damaged area. I use a dremel with a 'V' shaped grinding bit. This will make it look worse, but gelcoat shrinks as it cures, so it needs to be built up a little higher than the surrounding area. If you just put gelcoat into the area as it looks now, it will draw away from the edges as it cures.
Until the repair is done I would have no issue just taping it up and going for a paddle.
Touring Kayak Paddles
The Kayak Wing
Recreational Kayak Paddle
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