Kayaks & Canoes

11:03 a.m. on March 19, 2010 (EDT)
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I was wondering what the possibilities would be for a review section for Kayaks/Canoes. I feel these are an intricate part of camping and it could be really helpful to users of the site. Alot of destinations are only accessible by water and it would be nice to be able to tell people the pros & cons of kayaks & canoes as far as applications, durability, storage capacities, etc. Thanks-Rick.

5:39 p.m. on March 19, 2010 (EDT)
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Hi Rick,

The boundary waters group is a good canoe group but of course they're mostly up north. I'm not certain how much interest you would find here. Some of the other camping groups I belong to have a canoe section but there is very little posting; as in you won't really have enough canoers and kayakers to get the input you need without going to a specialty group. Maybe Yahoo has something.

11:47 a.m. on March 21, 2010 (EDT)
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This is an interesting suggestion, Rick, and something for us to think about. We have been expanding some of our gear categories lately, mainly filling in holes and the like.

Our criteria is that any gear on the site must be for human-powered, backcountry recreation. You're right that canoes and kayaks can fall into this area, so we'll have to think about it.

8:24 p.m. on March 21, 2010 (EDT)
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Hey thanks Jim, who knows? I look at it like this. If the info helps 1 person than I personally think its worth it. Who knows.

Alicia, I have been kayaking for years...all over the place. Rough water, smooth, etc. It is great. You don't disturb wildlife, its quiet, just an all around great experience. Plus you can get to alot of places that are not travelled as much because of the way it has to be accessed. Plus if ya get the right yak you can haul all of your gear with ya(packs, shelters, necessities, etc...)

Getting there is half the fun right?

I am not really into canoes but out of fairness I included them into the inquiry. Thanks... :)

10:24 a.m. on March 22, 2010 (EDT)
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I too, think it is a good idea, especially as your site is starting to attract people in other regions who may not just be backpackers but paddlers as well. Take me for example - I'm up here in the heart of Canadian canoe country and often the two hobbies overlap quite a bit.

3:52 p.m. on March 22, 2010 (EDT)
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I agree with LaurieAnn, I too often canoe and backpack to my destinations. I'm from Ontario, and lots of the trails I frequent you need a canoe or kayak to get to them. There is dedicated websites here in Ontario for canoeing and kayaking, but its nice to hear other peoples opinions from around the globe.

12:42 p.m. on March 23, 2010 (EDT)
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Thanks for this feedback. I find it helpful to hear from community members about how they use the site and what else they'd like to find on it.

We'll definitely give this serious consideration, so thanks for bringing it up, Rick. If others want to weigh in, feel free.

Also, if you think there are other gear categories (large or small) missing that fit within human-powered, backcountry gear, feel free to suggest them here as well. We have some more coming on the horizon, but it's nice to hear from others.

1:45 p.m. on March 23, 2010 (EDT)
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Alicia-I will pick the brain and see what else I can come up with. I went out on the water for the weekend(Fri-Sun) so I am still in a bit of a vegetation mode so I will definitely keep the site posted on future ideas. Have a good one.

4:28 p.m. on March 23, 2010 (EDT)
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Alicia, besides craft there are a lot of specific equipment needs that you could potentially market. There are paddles, dry bags, canoe booties, kayak clothes etc.

Canoe camping has been a favorite of mine for a long time. You don't actually have to carry the gear so you can even take ice chests. You don't need hiking boots. You can get to islands and spots otherwise inaccessible. You need good arms but good knees aren't required unless you kneel. You can take all the cameras and lenses that you own. No one can hike into your camp demanding to see your permit. Its much safer to canoe than to hike through a swamp.

Once when we camped on an island in a wilderness area, I paddled back to my truck and completely filled the canoe with firewood brought from home and sat on top of it to paddle back to the island.

Jim S

7:42 p.m. on March 23, 2010 (EDT)
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I'd like to see watersports, even though I hardly do any kayaking. But there is another category of sorts, which I think deserves its own section: (ultra)lightweight backpacking. I'm not sure if that is the right category description but I find some of the things that long distance backpackers talk about, and not just their gear, fascinating. Sometimes I get some good ideas for 'mid-weight backpacking' from them but mostly I enjoy it as a sort of spectator sport (until someone like TipiWalter has me browsing for titanium tent pegs - thanks Tipi!).

I tend to think of outdoor kit in terms of the respective activities - mountaineering, camping (or camp craft), woodlore, backpacking, trail running, paddling - so I wouldn't mind if 'gear selection' was delisted and absorbed into the specific activities anyway. Oh, and what about renaming "Beginners", "The Basics" or something like that?

Regardless, I would like to see more ultralight (backpacking) gear, whether it is expensive or homemade, talked about here on Trailspace (I know there are fora that cater for this; I just don't like them as much ;-) ) And smileys! Where are the emoticons?! Wake up Trailspace!

7:57 p.m. on March 25, 2010 (EDT)
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Thanks for all the thoughts and feedback. They're all being taken under serious advisement. I've passed on the emoticon request.

We've considered different ways to set up the forums. We'd like to add some more topics and rethink the organization. One concern though, is that if you have a whole ton of forums, they can get spread pretty thin and if people don't post enough in one it looks dead. But, this is something I'm going to give thought to.

As for adding paddling gear, I hear you loud and clear. I actually have a canoe and kayak and live a couple hundred feet from a large chain of lakes. So, I do get out on the water a bit. It sounds like a number of other Trailspace users do too.

7:01 p.m. on March 26, 2010 (EDT)
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The possibilities....

7:02 p.m. on March 26, 2010 (EDT)
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Mountain bikes, snowboards, skiis, off road inline skates, oh I could go on for a good while on the human powered aspect of this. Oh the marketing possibilities. :)

4:18 p.m. on March 27, 2010 (EDT)
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Rick, thanks for the suggestions. We actually have a couple more backcountry gear categories in the works for later this year.

As an aside, I think it's important for all of our members and readers to know that Trailspace only covers gear or types of gear that we think are interesting and/or relevant to our users.

Our mission is to be the best spot to help you find the right backcountry gear for your (human-powered) adventures.

We don't add any gear or content to the site unless we believe it is both useful for you folks and completely on target. Ultimately, anything we choose to do on the site has to be for the good of Trailspace and its community. (We have many long discussions on this topic.)

4:34 p.m. on March 27, 2010 (EDT)
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Well everything I threw into the mix is human powered and technically speaking a trail can be alot of things(a route of passage.) I believe whole heartedly that there are many outdoor activities out there that quite a few users prolly engage in that can be directly associated with the backcountry aspect of the site that are not on the site. Kayaks, and canoes are definitely associated hiking/camping. As well as skiing/snowboarding and mountain biking. I did web development, graphic design for a long time. I honestly understand what you are saying. A site is alot of work to say the least.

I have worked with linux, ( Java, apache, php, mysql, xml, etc.) Its alot of work and I commend you for your efforts with the site. Its great. Good job.

5:14 p.m. on March 27, 2010 (EDT)
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Thanks, Rick.

We will be adding some of these categories (a few have been in the works), I just didn't want to list them all here before they happen.

7:51 p.m. on March 27, 2010 (EDT)
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Yeah, ya do that some expect it to happen at the snap of a finger but don't understand how much goes into it on you end. I completely understand. Trust me. I have the gray hairs to prove it lol.

7:11 a.m. on March 28, 2010 (EDT)
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Rick, if you figure out that snap of the fingers move, let me know!

Thanks for understanding that these things take time to be done right. There are only so many hours and we have to make decisions on priorities by what we think is the next best move for Trailspace.

10:15 a.m. on March 28, 2010 (EDT)
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Never a problem, I have my good points although sometimes they are far & few in between. j/k.

6:27 p.m. on March 28, 2010 (EDT)
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re:Kayaks & Canoes

Great idea suggestion Rick , I do hope you find the time Alicia to get it up & running but if not ;you guys still have a great web site.

7:32 p.m. on March 28, 2010 (EDT)
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Thank you Islandkayakmon.

3:23 p.m. on May 5, 2010 (EDT)
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You asked and it now has been done!

Trailspace now has a paddling gear section: http://www.trailspace.com/gear/paddling/

You can now write reviews on paddling gear, and research paddling gear before buying.

The section includes canoes, kayaks, packrafts, paddles, accessories, apparel, and more. If you think we missed something, like a brand or type of gear, let us know. We'll continue to fine tune the info.

Also, there is a corresponding forum for paddling: http://www.trailspace.com/forums/paddling/

August 28, 2014
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