If you want to paddle farther....
Posted by: FrankNC on Apr-05-12 5:56 PM (EST)
then get a boat that paddles better. There is a real difference between a 12 footer and a 14 footer in ease of paddling and when I'm going to paddle more than 20 miles in a day I need a 14 to 18 foot boat to do it.
If you can afford a light boat in that range, then it is even better. If not use your cart and work together to move the boats. I paddle a lot of shallower water places so the Hobie would not work for me, but the Hobie Adventure is a great boat for covering miles in deep water.
I know of serveral folks in their 60's and 70's who are very strong paddlers. They all have two things in common: very good technique and they paddle very often 3 to 7 days a week.
As far as technique you should be easily able to paddle as far as you can walk on level ground. If it is not just as easy, then get some lessons. Like most I started out as an arm paddler and 6 miles was a long way. I got some pointers from friends and became a shoulder paddler and 15 miles was a long day. I took some more lessons and began to paddle with my core and now my feet cramp before anything else. In the beginning I never used my feet, now I'm pushing off and driving the boat with them as times. I may have gotten a little more fit over that time but most of it has been increases in hand toughness and working on technique.
Their are so many good paddling sit on tops and fishing sit in side boats that I'll just list two:
Tarpon 160 - Fast, glides all day, super comfortable, stable, heavy as a tank
Pungo 140 - Fastest 14 footer ever, one fella about 20 years my senior makes me really work to keep up with him even when I'm paddling a 17 foot sea kayak that weight half of what his Pungo does. On the down side:it is a sit inside (SinK)and it have a v bottom so it is not best in water less than 5 inches with rocks.
Great Products from the Buyers' Guide: