Canadian Canoe Routes

Whitewater paddle
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Author:  Splake [ June 15th, 2006, 8:52 am ]
Post subject:  Whitewater paddle

If I'm buying a whitewater paddle for durability rather than weight, what would you recommend?

Author:  daver [ June 15th, 2006, 9:37 am ]
Post subject: 

I have the Grey Owl Hammerhead. I like the paddle, but wood sure takes a beating on rocky streams and rivers. Next time I'd call Grey Owl directly and ask for an unfinished paddle and finish it in epoxy and a thinner stronger weave like kevlar or carbon.

Author:  Gail R [ June 15th, 2006, 10:33 am ]
Post subject: 

what type of white water? hubby is addicted to Creeking, he has a creeking carbon paddle with a aluminum tip and a spine of kevlar to add durability to the of Echo paddles with a couple modifications to suit his style.
If you are going to do lower volume rivers (and that includes most summer rivers in Ontario) don't expect to have your paddle last a lifetime...or if you do, your spare should be a crappy mohawk for those rock infested pushoffs.
Other than that don't go for the lightest stick...some blade makers do lamenates to take advantage of woods characterisitcs...heavy dense pieces in the stress areas and lighter in the others....but there are others here better equiped to speak on that.....

Author:  Dan. [ June 15th, 2006, 10:49 am ]
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aquabound is a good paddle for the money, a little too flexible though.

Author:  DougB [ June 15th, 2006, 11:55 am ]
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aquabound is a good paddle for the money, a little too flexible though.

Very true. Relatively inexpensive but a lack of stiffness to match. Even the carbon Aquabound is extremely flexible. A bigger problem (at least to me), is the tiny wimpy t grip Aquabound uses. I had mine replaced with a much larger wooden T grip. I've seen a couple Edge's modified like this. It makes the paddle much more useable. If you've got big hands, the small grip can cause cramping, besides there not being much to hold onto. The plastic blade wears fairly quickly too.

The Werner Bandit is stiffer, has a beefier grip and costs almost 80% more. The blade tends to chip when it wears.

The Grey Owl Hammerhead or C-1 Whitewater is a quality paddle for the money, but it's HEAVY. Once you use something lighter, it's hard to go back.

I tried out an Echo... pretty darn nice. I'm ordering a Creek Stick. I just don't know how I'm going to explain why I need to spend $300 on a paddle! I

Author:  Splake [ June 15th, 2006, 12:38 pm ]
Post subject: 

DougB wrote:
I tried out an Echo... pretty darn nice. I'm ordering a Creek Stick. I just don't know how I'm going to explain why I need to spend $300 on a paddle! I

Just tell her that even after buying the paddle you're still saving $500 by not going to MKC for a week. :wink: I'll drink a beer for you when I'm up there in July.

I've used the Aquabounds and can see the difference in flex between them and the Werners. I think it's the Bandit that has the carbon shaft and fibreglass blade and when I can I'd probably go with the Werner over the Aquabound for the price difference.

That said, I'm still struggling with the idea of a composite hockey stick even though I would use it way more than I get to paddle whitewater. So at $15/week I've been just renting the paddle when I do a course. Outside of a course, I have a laminated wooden paddle that I fibreglassed years ago when it started delaminating. I'm thinking that might continue to be the way to go.

Author:  yarnellboat [ June 15th, 2006, 1:19 pm ]
Post subject: 

Realistically, unless you're after something very specific and you have lots of money, what type of ww paddle you get will probably have more to do with what's locally available.

Decide what you can afford and then shop around to see what's available to you in your market. All the big brands (Grey Owl, MEC, Aquabound, Werner, Galasport. Mitchell, Lightning,...) make good paddles, but there's lots of personal preference involved, and many of these manufacturers don't have distributors everywhere.

Lots of people seem to start out with the Grey Owl Hammerhead/C-1.

What kind of rentals have you been using? While you're doing that, try to use different paddles and even different lengths - if you find something you really like, make them an offer on the rental!


Author:  Gail R [ June 15th, 2006, 1:23 pm ]
Post subject: intend to do slalom? A light stiff blade makes a difference there. (except for the likes of Mark Shriver....who could use a tree branch and still do amasing things....incidently he paddles with an Aquabound I beleive?) If you are putting out over 200 for a stick you don't want to cringe everytime you hit a rock. I think breakage has something to do with luck as of our friend broke 2 aquabounds in one season.....If you buy one of Andy's paddles (Echo) the indexer is nice
What about a lightning? I have one that I cut too short but it is a decent paddle, not as stiff but not as expencive either
anyone have experince with MEC paddles and know who makes them?

I have a Mitchell and like it but it is light and stiff and probably not suited to low water paddling, ( I use it anyway and pull out my ligtnighing when the rocks are more prevelant than the water) they have a range of layups and materials.

I figure if you are going to put out over 200 might as well get a good stiff carbon like Andy's (FYI he does do wood so check the website)
If you are looking to stay under 200 the Aquabound will do it for ya, it's just not as strong
So true about the grip...if it doesn't work for your hand then the paddle could be platnium, you still ain't gonna like it.
Doug....justification? bhahhhhhhh, my hubby has a favorite is better to beg for forgivness than ask permission........ and when that fails by two, one for her :wink:

Author:  Dan. [ June 15th, 2006, 4:30 pm ]
Post subject: 

The MEC paddle is an aquabound.

I have never broken mine, and I have used it as a shovel to dig the car out of the mide and a lever to pry off a pinned canoe, (thats where I learned how bendy they are - not a good lever)

Its a great rock basher, just not very effecient. But its cheap. H2pro is making single blade paddles this year, they are about $200, and very stiff for a PLASTIC blade.

Author:  Gail R [ June 15th, 2006, 4:52 pm ]
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that's because you are a hole rider and not a creeker :wink:
they are good paddles and lots of people really like them

Author:  Dan. [ June 15th, 2006, 5:05 pm ]
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Gail R wrote:
that's because you are a hole rider and not a creeker :wink:
they are good paddles and lots of people really like them

well, as anyone who has paddled with me knows, I am really more of a swimmer. :doh:

Author:  Rick [ June 15th, 2006, 5:47 pm ]
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Dan. wrote:
The MEC paddle is an aquabound.

Which paddle would this be Dan?

Author:  Alan Greve [ June 15th, 2006, 6:14 pm ]
Post subject: 

As said there are many paddles to pick from and most retailer tend to stay way from the higher ended paddles. I paddle with a number of different blades for different reasons or what ever my wife hasn`t grabbed up. As much as I like and use the carbon Aqua Bounds I do paddle with Echo and Gala Sport. I`ve now moved to the Echo for creeking just because it really stings the pocket book when you break a $ 400.00 Gala Sport stick. :doh:

Author:  Dan. [ June 15th, 2006, 8:09 pm ]
Post subject: 

Check this out

Author:  HOOP_ [ June 15th, 2006, 8:17 pm ]
Post subject: 

I will disagree with everyone who says the Aquabound carbon C-1 with the AMT black blade is too flexible and not strong. Are you kidding?

That paddle is super stiff in the shaft. The black AMT blade will flex when you smash a rock, but that’s a good thing. The AMT blade does not crack or shatter unless under extreme abuse when any material will. That blade will not flex when you pull water with it or brace, because of its stiff spline. I have used it for years in very abusive ways, and it is superb stiff paddle. I hate any flex, and this paddle does not flex when I pull on it.

The white blade, lower end model might be what people have used. It is softer. The black AMT blade will not disappoint.

Yes it does have a smallish T grip, but I have no complaints. It’s the same T grip as the old Harmony C1. You can buy the paddle without the handle glued in to use another grip of your choice, and you cut to length.

Update: I just checked Aquabound's website and it looks like they changed the C1 model name. They now call it the "Edge". The black blade version is the one you want. I have not seen it, but I assume its that same as the black AMT I mentioned above.

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