Problems with rec kayaks
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-06-13 9:03 PM (EST) Category: Kayaks
I know that it is an extremely ignorant and foolish thing to take rec kayaks on the ocean, but how much can they stand? Obviously not the ocean, but how about large lakes? Also, why are rec kayaks (besides their lack of bulkheads and perimeter lines) unsafe in such rough water? Is it their inability to be edged? Thank you!
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Have you tried an on-water self-rescue?|
Posted by: Celia on Feb-06-13 9:22 PM (EST)
And have you tried loading the boat up at least half full of water to emulate the effect of waves dumping into that very large cockpit?
Not without compartments!|
Posted by: sternman on Feb-08-13 9:45 AM (EST)
If you take a rec boat out on open water it better have sealed compartments. I've had more than one experience recovering a flooded kayak without bulkheads or flotation. It's very difficult. With so much water it's very hard to T-rescue and empty. In a rescue situation I would likely take the victim back to shore and set the kayak adrift. Not something I want to deal with.
Posted by: george4908 on Feb-06-13 9:57 PM (EST)
Isn't a lack of bulkheads & perimeter...|
Posted by: NewbTastic on Feb-06-13 10:42 PM (EST)
...lines enough of a big flashing "NOT SEAWORTHY" sign already? =0
The problem isn't with the rec kayak|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Feb-06-13 10:45 PM (EST)
And it's not a matter of how much a certain hull shape can "take".
except canoes and rec kayaks|
Posted by: kayamedic on Feb-06-13 10:59 PM (EST)
are different beasts to empty of water. Rec kayaks typically have one bulkhead open, sometimes two. Even if you have a partner in an accompanying boat, your rec kayak if it has one bulkhead will fill with water at the unsealed end and point to the sky. Its very difficult to empty one of those hulls with water.. with two unsealed ends the boat will be level and perhaps underwater, but its still darn near impossible to empty of any water.
Cleopatra's Needle effect|
Posted by: willi_h2o on Feb-07-13 12:39 AM (EST)
guess I don't fully agree witt...|
Posted by: Peter-CA on Feb-07-13 1:08 AM (EST)
Not sure there's any real disagreement|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Feb-07-13 2:36 AM (EST)
If a rec kayak paddler has insufficient skills to stay upright in wind-wave-current-rapids condition X, and if that rec kayak paddler has no roll or any other ability to self-rescue, he's not going to be better off in condition X if he's in a touring kayak or a whitewater kayak. He's in the drink regardless of hull because condition X is beyond his skill and self-rescue ability.
Rec kayaks are as safe as the user ....|
Posted by: Jackl on Feb-07-13 5:24 AM (EST)
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-07-13 6:52 AM (EST)
I had realized that the absence of bulkheads would mean that the kayak would fill up with water when it is flipped, and that I should not try anything above my skill level.
Posted by: rjh on Feb-07-13 7:33 AM (EST)
Those things are really only for swimming areas.
Posted by: Celia on Feb-07-13 8:22 AM (EST)
Oh no, |
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-07-13 4:17 PM (EST)
I was not thinking of long trips or kayak-over-kayak rescues. I would only go out for about an hour, and not more than (maximum) half a mile out. I had thought that I would be able to pump out my kayak before I got back in. I would be close enough to shore to retreat if the conditions suddenly change. I know it says that about calm lakes in the description, but I thought that it was a Dagger Catalyst under a different name, and a reviewer states that he weathered 20 foot waves (I know, probably not) in his.
Sorry, but you are not capturing this|
Posted by: Celia on Feb-07-13 5:07 PM (EST)
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-08-13 6:39 AM (EST)
I really do realize that it will be much more difficult than what I assume it will be, and I, regardless of whether I try open water or not, will practice self-rescues on a quiet lake.
Adding wind and waves to the equation|
Posted by: Kocho on Feb-08-13 9:34 AM (EST)
You can find a place with strong on-shore waves and some wind and practice rescues there. Make sure there are no hazards. Adding some textured water to the self-rescue makes a lot of difference. I've practiced in such conditions (where I would acrually be likely to capsize in the first place) and I can tell you I ran into unplanned problems in the 15 minutes that I practiced, several of which each might have been the end of me had this happened off-shore in cold water. I'm not going to go in details here, but suffice it to say that I could not pop my skirt the normal way for whatever reason (the shape of the cockpit makes it difficult in some cases, so I had to pop it open in an alternative way, which is something you should practice for with a parner next to you anyway), the second was that my paddle float work was less than stellar (kept falling off the paddle due to a silly mistake on my part), and third - my pump frifted away in the strong wind and foamy waves and I lost it alltogether.
Paddler not the boat|
Posted by: Jaybabina on Feb-07-13 8:06 AM (EST)
In defense of rec boats|
Posted by: bartc on Feb-07-13 8:25 AM (EST)
...one of which I paddle happily in not always flat conditions, it's three things that make it unsuitable for big wave action:
Your kayak is FINE|
Posted by: Kocho on Feb-07-13 9:26 AM (EST)
Bulkheads are a compartively recent|
Posted by: adbass on Feb-07-13 10:35 AM (EST)
addition to kayaking and even to sea kayaks. I think if you were to look back 20 odd years or so,you'd find examples of bulkhead-less, long and thin boats intended for the sea and touring use.
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-07-13 4:35 PM (EST)
Sorry to not clarify this at the start, but I am knowledgable, though not experienced. I taught myself how to paddle forward (torso rotation, ideal feather angle, using foot braces), edge, and do sweep/draw strokes. There are no classes that I can take without a good deal of traveling. I have been reading and watching the videos for about a year now, and I thought that I would be able to pick up experience pretty quickly. I intend to go from low to moderate skill levels, so to speak.
Best to have someone with you.|
Posted by: rpg51 on Feb-08-13 6:57 AM (EST)
Flooded Rec kayak rescue - brutal|
Posted by: Jaybabina on Feb-08-13 9:26 AM (EST)
Thus the SOT|
Posted by: Glenn_MacGrady on Feb-08-13 10:47 AM (EST)
They self-drain and are easy to climb back on. The downside is weight for the plastic ones. SOT's may have overtaken rec kayaks in the AmSouth, where the paddling is plentiful and no bloody two-foot snow storms are on the way.
Posted by: NewbTastic on Feb-09-13 4:20 AM (EST)
You almost wish SOTs could be a total replacement for your typical cheap & somewhat dangerous rec 'yak and put them on the road to extinction, but that wetter SOT ride + cold water = maybe not. =[
Posted by: Celia on Feb-08-13 11:28 AM (EST)
One time was a young kid at a hot demo day in a big bargey rec-y yellow tub, who was trying to capsize. He succeeded when I was looking the other way.
A few tricks I learned|
Posted by: Jaybabina on Feb-10-13 10:04 AM (EST)
If you get the rec boat up on it's side a large portion of the water will drain out without the conventional lifting of a bulkhead kayak. Then grab the stern end and lift that which is lighter than the bow to drain that. Than as the water is rolling around, you try to quickly get it across your deck. You try to do it quickly so all the water doesn't roll to the stern end. And when you pick it up, you do it sideways so the only water that makes if to the stern can't be higher than the cockpit side opening.
Boat type, skill set and practice all ..|
Posted by: tvcrider on Feb-08-13 1:21 PM (EST)
Posted by: dc9mm on Feb-09-13 1:04 PM (EST)
So true Tvcrider, I go kayaking with a couple of different groups and the one group I go with had a a quick rescue class before this event they had planned and I was quite shocked how very few could get back into the kayaks with a assisted rescue let alone a self rescue. Most were in decent sea kayaks too. I sat up on the back deck of my kayak for a better view as I watched this and couldn't believe how bad they all were. Didn't help that many were out of shape so no real strength to pull themselves up. Afterwards I mentioned keeping a strap along with there paddle float so they could use it as a step to help get them back up into kayak.
I find it hard to believe in self-rescue|
Posted by: ezwater on Feb-12-13 10:53 AM (EST)
of any of my canoes or kayaks out on a lake or the ocean. I put my trust in cumulative experience and judgement regarding wind and weather conditions. When in doubt, don't go far out.
definitely about practice|
Posted by: jcbikeski on Feb-12-13 11:25 AM (EST)
Every day I paddle I roll a few times and about every three or four days on the water I do a few cowboy and re-enter and rolls at the end of the paddle. On our few rough water days we always spend time in the water doing rescues for fun and practice. You can't just do a couple of club practice sessions a season and think you have it.
Posted by: CapeFear on Feb-09-13 6:06 PM (EST)
When it comes to evaluating your ability to travel through open water, against wind, waves, and currents, forward speed becomes an incredibly important part of that evaluation.
What I have learned.|
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-10-13 10:30 AM (EST)
1. Even though my boat is stable and has two bulkheads and I will be using a spray skirt, it can easily fill with water in a wet exit and it may not be possible to pump it out.
Just one fix|
Posted by: Celia on Feb-10-13 11:08 AM (EST)
Posted by: ret603 on Feb-10-13 3:26 PM (EST)
Ok, thank you!|
Posted by: ADNelson on Feb-11-13 8:16 AM (EST)
Just a quick thought on paddling buddy|
Posted by: gingernc on Feb-11-13 1:56 PM (EST)
AD, yes, it's usually safer to paddle with a buddy -- or two. But it's worth remembering: you're only safer with a buddy if that person is competent. Not expert but just competent.