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Why buy an inflatable kayak?
That's a good question! After all, there are lots of kayak options and different types of vessels for those who want to explore the water through paddling. However, we feel that inflatable kayaks offer the most benefits, are the most versatile, and are the most cost effective option on the market. Below we’ve outlined some of the reasons we feel this way.
Performance: The days of poorly designed inflatable kayaks that don’t compare to hardshell kayaks are gone. Inflatable kayak designers have led the way in developing a range of IKs that have every bit as much speed, stability, maneuverability, and performance as plastic kayaks. Today there are premier IK brands like Aquaglide, NRS, Innova, AIRE, Advanced Elements, and Sea Eagle. Each brand typically makes inflatable kayaks for flatwater, whitewater, and kayak fishing. As well there are options for single and tandem boats. To compliment the performance of your IK, make sure you invest in a high quality kayak paddle. This is the other piece of equipment that really matters. Our top brands for kayak paddles include Werner, Aquabound, and Bending Branches.
Transportation: The advantage of easy transportation is HUGE when it comes to inflatable kayaks! Unlike hardshell boats, IKs do not require kayak roof racks, a kayak trailer, or a large truck for transportation. They come in a compact transportable duffel bag that can easily fit inside almost any car, boat or plane. This makes them ideal for exploration, adventure travel, or people who just don’t want to monkey around with a giant, heavy plastic boat.
Storage: Unlike hardshell boats, inflatable kayaks do not require a dedicated storage area or awkward kayak storage solution. Each boat stores easily in it’s bag and will fit in most closets or anywhere in your garage. You can easily take it up an elevator or simply leave it in the trunk of your car. You just can't beat the convenience of storing a compact inflatable kayak.
Easy to Use: Inflatable kayaks are easy to setup and easy to use. Simply unroll and inflate the chambers with a kayak pump and you'll be on the water in minutes. Most paddlers would gladly trade a few extra minutes of inflating and deflating their kayak for the ability to easily transport the boat to and from the water without having to use a kayak cart.
Safety: Forget about the claustrophobic fear of being trapped inside your boat, or the tedious task of having to learn the Eskimo Roll. Thanks to their additional buoyancy, inflatable kayaks are far more stable than hardshell kayaks, making them accessible for advanced and novice paddlers alike. If you do fall out, it is not difficult to climb back in. This gives the paddler confidence and flexibility to venture out farther. You will of course want to make sure you choose the right kayak clothing for your adventure. A paddling wetsuit and paddling jacket are usually a great option when the risk of submersion is present, but the air temperature is not below 65 degrees. If the water and air temperature is colder, you may want to consider a kayak drysuit or kayak drytop. And no matter what the conditions, make sure you always have the proper kayak shoes. Our top brands for kayak clothing include NRS, Kokatat, and Stohlquist.
Comfortable:Not only are inflatable kayaks more stable, but they are also way more comfortable than a tippy hardshell boat. Adjustable seating positions and tall, cushioned, ergonomically developed seats help to make inflatable kayaks feel more like you're sitting in a lounge chair! This is a big deal when you're out on the water all day.
Reduced Carbon Footprint:By avoiding the use of roto-molded polyethylene and the associated transportation issues at every step in the distribution chain, inflatable kayaks take a step toward the future by significantly reducing the carbon footprint of each boat.
So, there are just a few reasons why we think inflatable kayaks are the best things on the water today.