There are several considerations when buying your first canoe. With so many to choose from and your hard earned cash at stake, you want to make sure you’re buying the right canoe for the job. To help you, we’ve compiled a list of things to think about when you make your new purchase.
Buying a canoe: top tips
New or second hand?
There are several reasons why you might opt for one over the other, but it’s worth considering the pros and cons for each before you buy.
- New: New canoes can be expensive, with good quality ‘starter’ canoes costing from around £800, all the way up to a few thousand pounds for something more specialist and personalised. When you’re spending a good amount of money on kit, it’s always advisable to seek some specialist advice. Get yourself down to your local canoe retailer and ask their advice… they’re the gurus afterall!
- Second hand: If you’re on a budget but want something quality and built to last, second hand canoes are a great alternative and can get you and the family on the water for less. Typically, websites such as eBay or Gumtree will have second hand listings, but when looking, remember to look at the quality of fittings, condition of the wooden parts, the condition of the boat in general (is it watertight?) and look for cracks, holes and repairs.
Best canoe for the job?
Consider what you are using the canoe for. Although a lot of canoes look the same to the untrained eye, there are subtle differences between the styles. Generally, the shorter canoes are more suitable for white water and rapids. You will find the long, narrow canoes are best for speed and tracking, with the wider and deeper canoes better for family adventures and carrying kit on canoe camping trips.
Confused by what we mean by different types of canoe? Take a look at this fantastic video from our friends at Glenmore Lodge who explain it perfectly!
Type of paddle
If you’re buying a canoe, chances are you will need to buy a paddle too… Plastic paddles are great for beginners as they are durable and can take plenty of hammer. If however, you want something a little snazzier or fancy splashing the cash on a lovely looking wooden paddle, make sure you consult a retailer before you buy to get measured for the best fit.
One last consideration…
Once you’ve purchased your canoe, how are you transporting it? Most people opt for roof racks and straps, which is one of the easiest ways to transport your canoe.
Before you head off on your first adventure, take a look at the video here produced by Palm Equipment. It’s a great tutorial which will be helpful when you try to transport your canoe safely for the very first time!