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Thread: Gear Recommendations from Fellow Paddlers

  1. #1
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    Default Gear Recommendations from Fellow Paddlers

    So to those out there who paddle, or at least paddle for a majority of the time, do any of you wear gloves to prevent calluses/blisters/etc from paddling? And if so, what do you use/recommend? I'm looking for lightweight gloves, as I already have some gloves I use during the winter/early spring. And are the standard yak grips a good investment as well, or do you have a preferred type of grip for your paddle? And lastly, what sort of paddle do you have? I've got the angler scout, which is a great paddle for the price IMO, but I might want to go with something lighter, for longer trips, or windy trips, of which there have been many lately. I was looking at the aquabound stingray or manta ray, which seem to be quality carbon fiber paddles at good prices. Any experience with those? Thanks for the help everyone.

  2. #2
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    Never really used gloves but I did own the aquabound stingray for a day then returned it. The eagle ray is better with more surface area for a low angle paddle stroke. The manta ray is more of a high angle. I loved my eagle ray, only reason I got rid of it was because I went full carbon fiber.


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  3. #3
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    Dec 2016
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    NOVA
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    I don't use gloves but I have a set of paddle grips on my paddle: http://www.fieldandstreamshop.com/p/...3_ecom_PLA_453

    I have the upgraded Vibe paddle. It is great.

  4. #4
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    I've been using the Angler Scout now for a couple years. It's nothing fancy, but like you said, its the right price. I've never tried a carbon fiber paddle (afraid I'll like it too much and overspend) so I have no comparison for weight, but I'm so used to the Angle Scout I can paddle it all day no problem. And I will say I have found the notch in the paddle blade to be handy for getting out snags or for scoring snagged lures/weights other people left behind. Small bonus I guess.

    I only wear gloves when it's cold out. I work outside so my hands are already pretty rough and callus. Are you getting blisters because your gripping the paddle to firmly or working too hard with your paddle stroke? If you use good form I don't think you should be getting blisters all that often. Either that or you need to paddle more to turn those blisters into calluses, hehe

    The only problem with not wearing gloves, or not having a paddle grip, to me is slippery hands. Sunscreen and tog slime are the worst to have on your hands for paddling.

  5. #5
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    How much thicker is the paddle with it on?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slobber Bob View Post
    I've been using the Angler Scout now for a couple years. It's nothing fancy, but like you said, its the right price. I've never tried a carbon fiber paddle (afraid I'll like it too much and overspend) so I have no comparison for weight, but I'm so used to the Angle Scout I can paddle it all day no problem. And I will say I have found the notch in the paddle blade to be handy for getting out snags or for scoring snagged lures/weights other people left behind. Small bonus I guess.

    I only wear gloves when it's cold out. I work outside so my hands are already pretty rough and callus. Are you getting blisters because your gripping the paddle to firmly or working too hard with your paddle stroke? If you use good form I don't think you should be getting blisters all that often. Either that or you need to paddle more to turn those blisters into calluses, hehe

    The only problem with not wearing gloves, or not having a paddle grip, to me is slippery hands. Sunscreen and tog slime are the worst to have on your hands for paddling.
    Yeah I probably am gripping it too firmly, I mainly get the blisters when it's real windy. I work with my hands fairly often too, and weightlift, so I figured my calluses would just get thicker, but instead I got all new ones. And yeah the slipperiness with sunscreen and/or sanitizer after getting stuck with a spine, really tends to degrade my ruler on the paddle. You can really tell where I grip it normally, that's where the missing spots on the ruler are.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    I use YakGrips.

    They add about 1/8 to 3/16 of an inch of soft foam padding to the paddle shaft. They provide a comfortable place to grasp the paddle and help to prevent blisters. Additionally, they may also provide a degree of floatation for your paddle for those like me who do not use a paddle leash.

    They're available from multiple sources on-line for between $14 and $20 a pair.

    I think they are well worth the cost.
    Mark

    Olive Hobie Revo 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

  8. #8
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    When I first started kayak fishing I did not wear gloves and often got blisters or at least tender spots on my hands. 5-10 years ago, I bought a set of Yakgrips (foam sleeves that slide on the paddle shaft). I really like them for two reasons: 1) they provide a cushioned place on the paddle shaft to grip -- they eliminated any blisters or tenderness; and b) they will float most paddles in the event your paddle goes overboard.

    Two years ago I was taking an antibiotic ffor a few weeks that made my skin extra sensitive to sunlight. During that period, I had several days of fishing in Florida. After the first day, my hands were badly burned and swollen. I went to a kayak shop and bought a set of fly fishing gloves (finger tips exposed). That solved the sun problem and also reduced the number of times I got pricked by a dorsal fin spine. I now wear them on every trip and don't even realize they are there anymore. I can easily wind in and release fish and can even tie on lures and leaders while wearing the gloves. I have used two varieties -- Cabelas and Buff -- and like them both. I can get a year or more out of a pair of gloves. If you have handled fish during your trip, I recommend washing them with soap and water when you get home.

    Regarding paddles there are many choices. I won't recommend any brand or model, but do suggest you consider the following factors:

    - weight (inversely related to cost)
    - shaft material
    - blade material
    - shape of blade
    - length of shaft
    - ability to offset the two blades
    John Veil
    Annapolis
    Native Watercraft Manta Ray 11 and Slayer Propel 10
    Member - Pro Staff team for Native Watercraft

    Author - "Fishing in the Comfort Zone" - light tackle fishing techniques for kayaks and small boats

  9. #9
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    Oh yeah, the painted ruler on mine lasted about a week before it was rubbed off where I hold. You can barely tell it even had a ruler on it now.

    If you're getting them when it's windy, it does sound like it might be from gripping too tight or paddling too hard. Which can be tough not to do sometimes when you are really fighting conditions. Grips or gloves certainly might help.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    They add about 1/8 to 3/16 of an inch
    That's not too bad at all. I was envisioning much thicker. A diameter increase of that much probably doesn't take much time to adjust to.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slobber Bob View Post
    That's not too bad at all. I was envisioning much thicker. A diameter increase of that much probably doesn't take much time to adjust to.
    The only adjustment you'll notice is increased comfort.
    Mark

    Olive Hobie Revo 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

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