Priorities when buying and choosing a kayak

I am home and recovering from the Scottish Canoe Association Paddle 2011 show in Perth, Scotland. It was two days of showing off a range of Tiderace boats at the Kayak Bute stand. I talked to dozens and dozens of Tiderace customers and potential customers aged 6 to 86 about kayaking and boats. They poked, prodded, felt and sat in the boats for as long as they wanted.  Some coming back three or four times. It was great fun and hard work, and above all it was fantastic to meet so many enthusiastic kayakers.

We talked about many aspects of the boats, including the range of models and the sizes available*. This is a real strong point and can’t be underestimated how important this is. A sea kayak cockpit is somewhere we spend a lot of time for pleasure, which is why it is important not to compromise on this.

The folks at Paddle 2011 were lucky to get the chance to sit in the boats. Not all boats were so accessible! They easily adjusted the footpegs, felt the security of the seat and the solidity of the backrest. They loved the finish of the cockpit rim, and how accessible that ‘make-up’ or foredeck hatch is.

The proof of the pudding is in the tasting, and the demo days lined up over the next month are filling up fast. Details on http://www.kayakbute.co.uk

* The Xcape comes in three sizes: small, standard and X (extra!). The Xplore in three sizes and for 2012 it will also be available in medium which completes the size range on our proven expedition kayak. The Xcite in small and standard.

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