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Old 12-31-2001, 02:53 PM
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SeaKayaker SeaKayaker is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: VA, USA
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Those were some interesting tips. I personally enjoy kayaking (open water) and fly-fishing (although I usually just use the kayak to get where I want to fish and then I get out and fish).

#127 - Glue a piece of neoprene or 1/4 inch foam under your feet in the cockpit. It will keep your feet warmer and prevent sandy boots from wearing a hole in the hull.
This actually sounds like a very good idea. I generally paddle a wooden kayak I made last summer (the hull is four millimeter mahogany plywood with fiberglass on the outside and epoxy on the inside). Although I am not concerned about putting a hole in my boat, your ankles will feel much better with some foam under them. I usually put some small towels under my ankles, especially if I will be paddling for a while, but I have often thought about using some foam.

#21 - Every time you go out for a day paddle, spend the last twenty minutes doing a few practice rolls.
First, I have not done an Eskimo Roll in my kayak (as she is only 22 inches wide and has knee braces, it should not be too difficult, though), and am not an expert in this field. I also do not know the focus of this book, but I would mention that many fishing kayaks may not be designed in such a way as to allow you to roll. If there are no knee braces, a roll will be nearly impossible as you will just fall out. In the case of the sit-on-tops, some of them of them are so wide that it may take a tremendous amount of power to roll them (there is a special roll that open-water kayakers use in which they lean back to begin the roll that gives more power than a traditional white-water roll, but I have only practiced white-water rolls). In other words, get some advice from an experienced kayaker before trying to roll a kayak if you are not sure that it was designed with rolling in mind (I hear that there are rolling clinics in many areas, although I have never attended one).

#36 - Test paddle a loaded kayak. Feel and performance will be very different with a load on board(at least 50lbs.) You can use two-liter bottles filled with water.
I have noticed that my kayak handles differently when she is loaded, even relatively lightly. Remember that, if you are doing rolls, you need to be able to do them with a loaded boat (or know that you cannot do them with a loaded boat).

#1 - A week of competent instruction is worth a year of just paddling around.
But the year paddling around is a lot of fun!

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