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Author Topic: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island  (Read 224 times)

mstarkie

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Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« on: April 24, 2018, 08:15:28 AM »

Looking for a first kayak to do mostly rivers and flat water in New Jersey where I live.  By rivers, I mean a class like the Hudson River along Manhattan.  I have an eye on a 14ft boat that I like.  I travel to Rhode Island on weekends in the summer and would like to use it to paddle close to shore along the coast of Misquamicut Beach and head out to Sandy Point and later, with more experience, to Fisher's Island in good calm summer weather.  Would the 14 footer be considered dangerous for these trips?
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JSharlin

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2018, 05:40:32 PM »

If you are concerned about safety while kayaking in open water the size of the kayak is not as important as training and instruction. You should take some classes with an experienced coach. If you go to Kayak Waveology, Kayak Centre, or Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures you'd get the chance to learn skill sets for doing crossings and learn about what kayak fits best for your needs. I'd think that a longer boat than 14' would be better however it's important to sit inside and paddle around.
I'm sure others in our club will chime in on this.
Jon

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mstarkie

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2018, 08:33:13 AM »

Thank you for the response.  I have signed up for 1 full day instruction class since I posted my question and plan to do more before attempting any crossings.  Safety is always my first concern but my question is that I'm looking for a boat that will satisfy all needs. I'm quite willing to trade efficiency for weight and maneuverability since I'll be in fresh water most of the time.  If doing the crossings in a 14' boat doesn't pose any more danger than I'll keep my eye on the 14' and make sure I try it out first along with longer boats to get a basic understanding before I purchase. 
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JSharlin

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2018, 11:18:42 AM »

That sounds good. Generally the longer and narrower kayaks tend to go faster and straighter.
The more boats you can paddle the better. A skeg, bulkheads and deck lines are also important
for sea kayaking. I grew up near the Hudson river and I've seen wind opposing current with large standing waves.
You will need a sea worthy kayak.
Jon
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Tony M.

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2018, 03:40:33 PM »

   The crossing out to Fisher's Island is best done in a group of experienced kayakers. Potential dangers include currents (especially at the eastern and western ends of the island),and boat traffic. Last year I went with RICKA on a circumnavigation of Fisher's Island, a very enjoyable trip. Such trips require a kayak of at least 15' (according to RICKA Sea Kayaking standards) with bulkheads or airbags, plus other applicable safety gear, such as a PFD, and sprayskirt. There are 14' boats that are fully sea-capable ( I own 2), such as the Mariner Coaster, and RICKA trip coordinators may make an exception for an experienced paddler paddling one of these on a RICKA trip. (Their main concern may be whether or not you can keep up with a group of 17'+ kayaks) Hope this helps.
                                          Tony
« Last Edit: April 25, 2018, 03:42:50 PM by Tony M. »
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Rocks are our friends!

mstarkie

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2018, 04:09:41 PM »

Great information here.  I supposed I could just rent a 17' boat for the rare sea crossings that I will be doing (once or twice a year) for the time being and buy a second boat if I really find I want to do more ocean crossings.
-Mike

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Kayak Waveology

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Re: Suitable Kayak Size for Fisher's Island
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2018, 07:48:50 AM »

Mike,
We are here to help. 

Best

Greg Paquin

Owner and BC Coach
Kayak Waveology, LLC.
Tel: 860-304-4000
Web: www.kayakwaveology.com
Email: coach@kayakwaveology.com
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