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is the use of a kayak for moving across water. Kayaking is generally
differentiated from canoeing by the fact that a kayak has a closed cockpit
and a canoe has an open cockpit. However, there are many sit-on-top
kayaks, and these boats are growing in popularity. They also use a two
bladed paddle. Another major difference is in the way the paddler sits in
the boat. Kayakers sit in a seat on the bottom of the boat with their legs
extended out in front of them. Canoeists will either sit on an elevated
bench seat or kneel directly on the bottom of the boat.
White water kayaking involves taking a kayak down rapids. Sea kayaking sometimes also referred to as Ocean Kayaking involves taking kayaks out on to the ocean or other open water i.e a lake. Sea kayaking can involve short paddles with a return to the starting point or "put-in" or expeditions covering many miles and days. Kayaking of all kinds has continued to increase in general popularity through the 1990s and early 21st century.
How to Understand Waves in Kayaking
The Tidal Waves in Coastal Cruising
Understanding waves is essential if you plan to voyage on a coastal cruise, especially in a kayak. Most experts learn how to read the waters before taking the journey across the sea. In fact, you will need to learn how the wind affects the waves before venturing off into the sea in a kayak.
For now we can discuss how bow, stern, beam, and side waves differ to help you better understand how kayaking and sea cruising works. If the waves are hitting the bow of your vessel, you have a bow wave, yet if the vessel shifts and the waves hit the stern, then you have a stern wave. When the vessel is turned at 90 degrees you will experience beam waves, or else the wave could target the bow or stern. It depends on the direction your kayak is pointing, which determines the wave.
When the sea works in an opposite direction, i.e. the wind and tidal waves, you may experience a combination wave. (Bow, stern, beam, etc) The combination waves often occur when obstruction areas affect the waves.
How can I tell if my kayak is seaworthy?When venturing off on a sea cruise in a kayak, you want to make sure your vessel is seaworthy. Bow waves will show you better than tell you the level of stability your kayak offers. If you can paddle through small tidal waves with little effort, then you have a good boat. If the boat is in good condition, the kayak will smoothly top the waves. (Tip: You can add wave deflectors to the bottom of your boat to fight the waves)
If the bow of your boat is shallow, and the deck is too flat, likely your boat is not seaworthy, since the waters will spurge upon to the deck and into your cockpit. Experts recommend that you test your boat prior to adventuring the seas.
How do I escape steep waves?You want to lean forward as much as possible while manoeuvring your paddles. The paddle blade should dip 1/3 downward into the waters. You can pull your body weight while reversing the blade. (See ski-pole rudder strokes to learn more)
Tip: Mark your lifejacket and paddles to provide an easy spotting solution. Kayakers typically, and should use three boats while travelling the sea. In other words, do not travel alone.
Sometimes, in coastal cruises, you will come upon areas that will dim visibility. You want to practice high-intense observational skills to manoeuvre in areas that block your sight.
How do I decide which wave works in my favor?
The stern wave is your best wave, especially if you learn first how to manoeuvre and use tactics to escape the waves. When stern waves slow your path, you will need to use force while thrusting your body forward and paddling simultaneously. You want to focus on the stern paddle while manoeuvring through stern waves.
Stern waves can prevent dangers if you do not stay in front of the waves. You may want to learn more about water skiing to add new tactics to your kayaking methods.
A beam wave is essential to understand, as well as the tactics you will need to employ while battling these waves. You will need to practice the high and low telemark strokes to master beam waves. You should learn the sweep stroke, and the proper methods for leaning forward to master beam waves. A beam wave in respect is often high tidal waves.
Before you journey off to sea, make sure you learn and practice all details of kayaking, since you do not want to be the next story, “Only the Sea Will Tell.”
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