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 Post subject: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 23rd, 2018, 1:57 pm 
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Joined: March 13th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Vassalboro , Maine usa
I am interested in trying an ottertail paddle. I took a look on the internet. There don't seem to be a lot of companies making them or selling them. Any suggestions? I am looking for a Kevlar ottertail, ideally. Thanks in advance for any help.

Frankr


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 23rd, 2018, 4:00 pm 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:47 pm
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Never ever seen a Kev ottertail. Alchemist used to make the Myst, a carbon ottertail.




I have a few ottertails. Two of them are Kettlewells. Kettlewell designs are still made by Fishell paddles

https://www.fishellpaddles.com/
I am not far from you. The lake ice just went out. Mostly you find them at canoe shows like the Wooden Canoe Heritage Association Assembly.

Alternatively you can paddle hunt downstream of Six Mile Falls.. There are some paddles in the sticks between there and Bangor for sure from the Kenduskeag race. But I think they are mostly whitewater paddles and Zavs.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 23rd, 2018, 4:05 pm 
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Caleb Davis, who lives in the Adirondacks of NY State often holds paddle making classes, mainly for otter tail wood paddles. Or you can order one pre-made directly from him.

http://tremolopaddles.wcha.org/tremelop ... lcome.html

I have several of Caleb's paddles. When I am not racing or race training (with a carbon bent shaft), my go-to recreational paddle is a Davis otter tail or a willow leaf (slightly narrower than otter). The sharp edge blade for slicing without resistance through the water makes any stroke easy to handle and to maneuver my canoe any way I wish.


Last edited by nessmuk on April 23rd, 2018, 5:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 23rd, 2018, 4:27 pm 
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Joined: March 13th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Vassalboro , Maine usa
Littleredcanoe - Nessmuk

Thank you very much for these useful referrals.

Littleredcanoe - I know you are also from Maine. Hopefully, someday we will run into each other. Friend me on FB if you want, I do a fair number of canoeing and environmental posts. I am the only Frank Richards living in Vassalboro Maine.

Frankr


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 23rd, 2018, 5:07 pm 
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Joined: August 8th, 2017, 9:14 am
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MEC has a number of different ottertails on their website.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 24th, 2018, 12:50 am 
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Joined: March 23rd, 2006, 11:21 pm
Posts: 1076
Location: Burns Lake, BC
We are fans of older Redtails if you could find used. (the new ones have asymmetrical grips)

I have a Kettlewell but it's not my favourite.

I think I'll try a Badger paddle for my next one.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 24th, 2018, 1:02 pm 
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Joined: January 30th, 2018, 12:46 pm
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There are two Grey Owl paddles that you might want to take a look at. They may be "modified" ottertails. The Chieftain has been around a long time. I don't use long bladed paddles very often but when I do my Chieftain is my favorite. They also recently started offering the Northern Light. It is super light compared to every other long bladed paddle that I have handled...my friend has one.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 24th, 2018, 5:00 pm 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:47 pm
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Frankr wrote:
Littleredcanoe - Nessmuk

Thank you very much for these useful referrals.

Littleredcanoe - I know you are also from Maine. Hopefully, someday we will run into each other. Friend me on FB if you want, I do a fair number of canoeing and environmental posts. I am the only Frank Richards living in Vassalboro Maine.

Frankr

FB friend request sent.. I have a picture of some of my ottertails. It would be nice to meet and paddle in your area..Never done any of the Kbec above Bath. I can bring all paddles.
I'm in Raymond.. I see you are tackling the St John area in May.. We're going to Iceland mid May to mid June but will be home most of the summer except August when we want to do some Maine wilderness paddling.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: April 26th, 2018, 1:13 pm 
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Joined: March 13th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Vassalboro , Maine usa
I ended up ordering a Ray Special and a Quill from Fishell paddles, which sells directly to customers, takes credit cards, and ships to the US. I am a wilderness tripper and mostly go on river trips, in Maine. I only do class III whitewater if it's absolutely necessary. I normally use a Wenonah Kevlar bent shaft. This summer I will be paddling a 27 mile lake (Chesuncook) possibly solo. I am really looking forward to trying out these paddles. In addition to being works of art that connect a paddler to history, the design seems to be so much more logical and functional on lakes. I wonder why bigger paddling companies don't offer these designs. I have paddled now about 30 years and I just became aware of these native/traditional paddles fairly recently.


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: March 14th, 2019, 3:26 pm 
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Joined: March 13th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Vassalboro , Maine usa
Follow up. I was very pleased with the traditional paddles. On flat water, the longer thinner blade is easier to pull through the water and much more efficient. I still like a bent shaft Kevlar paddle for white water. I think I will always be taking a traditional paddle with me for flat water. Fishell paddles was excellent. They are small enough to hand craft paddles, big enough to answer email, process credit cards and ship.

http://www.fishellpaddles.com


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: March 14th, 2019, 5:05 pm 
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Joined: August 8th, 2016, 10:37 am
Posts: 75
Location: Northern Alberta
FrankR,

Glad to hear you found what you were looking for- and very glad you are happy with the Fishell product.
We have a number of Kettlewell ottertails- they have been the family "go to" paddles for years! And I'll look for a couple of Badger or Fishells this summer.

Just a few shots of Kettlewell Ottertails in action across the country- Bowron Lakes in BC, Prince Albert NP in Sask., on the French River in Ontario and in Jasper NP in Alberta!

Cheers!
Bruce


Attachments:
Kettlewell at end of Bowron Trip.jpg
Kettlewell at end of Bowron Trip.jpg [ 205.17 KiB | Viewed 991 times ]
Kettlewells in PA National ParkIMG_2894.jpg
Kettlewells in PA National ParkIMG_2894.jpg [ 217.61 KiB | Viewed 991 times ]
Kettlewell on the French River.jpg
Kettlewell on the French River.jpg [ 122.63 KiB | Viewed 991 times ]
Kettlewell in Jasper Nat Park.jpg
Kettlewell in Jasper Nat Park.jpg [ 137.75 KiB | Viewed 991 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: March 15th, 2019, 3:17 pm 
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Joined: September 9th, 2003, 3:41 pm
Posts: 39
Location: Collingwood, On
I can't say enough good things about the Ottertail, and all the other paddles, made by Milan at Hunter and Harris in Bradford, ON:

https://hunterandharris.com/collections/all-products-in-order/products/otter-tail-paddle

He's a true craftsman who knows how to craft a beautiful and functional paddling machine.

[img]paddles.jpg[/img]


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: March 19th, 2019, 12:42 pm 
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Joined: August 8th, 2016, 10:37 am
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Location: Northern Alberta
Thanks for the heads up Seaweed!
I wasn't aware of Hunter and Harris. And their paddles look very nice.

May have to treat myself this summer...

Bruce


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 Post subject: Re: Ottertail paddles?
PostPosted: March 19th, 2019, 1:26 pm 
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Joined: February 17th, 2009, 3:41 pm
Posts: 30
Location: Calgary / Alberta
I have a Badger Tripper modified Ottertail and can't say enough good about it. Amazing paddle. http://www.badgerpaddles.com/paddles/BADGERTRIPPER.html

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