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Canoeing and Canoe Fishing Options

The W is a great boat for kayaking and kayak fishing, but it’s also easy to paddle with single-blade (canoe) paddles – both in solo and tandem modes.

The 9 ft long, two-pieces, dual blade Mohawk paddle we offer can be turned into two canoe paddles using the T-grip kit: Each of the two canoe paddles is good for canoeing in the lower positions (Riding, Sitting and Kneeling) and long enough for paddling standing up, as shown in this picture:

Standup paddling - canoe paddle

Paddling with a canoe paddle is fun, and it can be easier than kayaking when there are two paddlers in the cockpit.

The W tracks better than canoes, and it is stabler than canoes its size, which makes it easy to use in canoeing applications – even for small children:

Small children W canoeing in tandem

When it comes to fishing, a short, single blade paddle offers the advantage that you can simply drop it in the cockpit as soon as you need to grab a fishing rod that’s showing signs of action… -You don’t even have to find paddle holders.

Another advantage that a canoe paddle offers is when you need to paddle through areas with many low hanging branches that could make handling a kayak paddle more difficult.

Overcoming Windage Issues – Paddling and Tracking in Strong Wind

Once you get used to your W Kayak you’ll find that you’re likely to be out paddling it and fishing from it on windy days, when other kayakers and kayak fishermen prefer to stay at home or simply can’t use they kayaks because of ‘windage’ problems.

Thanks to its exceptional, ‘catamaran’ tracking capabilities the W kayak has less windage issues than traditional SIK and SOT kayaks, including sea kayaks. In addition, your ability to move fore and aft along the saddle as well as lean sideways give you effective means to counter affect the wind.

  • Side Wind

You’ll be able to track well while a strong side wind is blowing once you’ve mastered the following things:
1. Position yourself in the middle of the cockpit (not in the back for this matter). In case of exceptionally strong side wind you can even position yourself a notch forward and by that let the stern ‘trail’ behind the bow. Generally speaking, you will find that your location along the saddle can help you in more than one way.
2. Lean into the wind, similarly to leaning into the turn – You can use the difference in the hulls’ height to act as a powerful ‘rudder’ that would help your W kayak track.
3. Apply the appropriate paddle stroke on each side of the kayak, that is use a weaker and regular style stroke on the side from which the wind is blowing, and a stronger, longer stroke on the lee side. By doing so you will compensate for the wind’s tendency to deviate your boat from its intended course.

  • Head Wind

Interestingly, much of the headwind passes between the W hulls, and eddies have a lesser effect on it than they have on monohull kayaks that have broader hulls.

You can paddle against a strong head wind in the Riding position (recommended) or one of the Kneeling positions.
The more you lean forward the more power you’ll be able to apply in your paddling.

The paddle itself might become a mini ‘sail’ when a strong wind is blowing, therefore it is advised to keep the paddle at a low angle above the boat, regardless of the direction from which the wind is blowing.

The W Kayak at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science (DMNS)

It’s been a year since the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS) exhibited a W Kayak in its Engineer It! exhibit.

The DMNS chose to exhibit the W Kayak to represent technical innovation in boat design.

W kayak exhibited at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science (DMNS)

You can pan through an online interactive view of the exhibit by clicking and dragging your mouse cursor on the frame (requires Apple QuickTime viewer)

The organizers of this exhibit reported that the visitors loved the boat.

I thought that event worth remembering since it was the first time the W concept was officially recognized.