Paddles

Top: 200 cm all-‘glass Aquabound Shred (40 oz); Bottom: 210 cm ‘glass and carbon Werner Shuna (30.8 oz).

I got a new paddle, and it’s amazing.

The Shuna was supposed to maybe, just make it in time to go to Alaska, but a train deraillment in the Twin Cities (seriously, it said so on the UPS tracker) prevented it from doing so.  Too bad, as it is better in every respect and so much fun to paddle.  So much.

I bought the Aquabound way back in 2008, when I was trying to sell the Lenz to fund a packraft.  I couldn’t sell it for enough, had no surplus funds with grad school beginning, so the Lenz stayed and the Aqua got used to paddle Dylan Kentch’s old beefed up Sevylor enough to prove the concept of packrafting.  Since I got my red Yak last year, the Aqua’s gotten a lot of use.

Shortcomings have been steadily forthcoming since.  It’s heavy, especially blade heavy, and the joints (especially the mid-shaft joint) have lots of play in them.  200 cm is also a bit too short for all around use, especially for flatish water and paddling with a bike on board.  The blades are too big for general use, at least for a weak-armed person like me, and the lack of feather adjustment on the ‘bound makes paddling into a strong headwind more miserable than it already has to be in a packraft.

I’m breaking my own rules, as I’ve only used the Shuna twice, but it’s just too good to not write about.  Thus far it feels absolutely perfect.  Thanks to Roman for helping me pick it.

Main Flathead, yesterday.

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10 thoughts on “Paddles

  1. Looking forward to your experiences in the next time Dave.
    I’m using a Aqua Bound Manta Ray Carbon with a length of 230cm at the moment and I’m thinking about to buy a shorter one.
    Are the Werner blades also separately available?

    1. A shorter paddle would definitely be welcome in whitewater.

      Werner does sell replacement blades, but they’re pricey (Luc asked when he snapped a blade on his 4 piece Powerhouse earlier this year), to the point of being prohibitively expensive.

  2. Looks good. I had to settle with a cheap aluminum shafted 2-piece paddle but I’d like to get a lighter paddle for future adventures. And maybe a tad bit shorter for white water (mine is 215cm), though I like it on calmer water. For lake use it could be even longer, especially if paddling the Denali Llama with two persons on top.

    1. Call any high-end Werner dealer, or Werner themselves.

      The paddle is still going strong, and always a joy to paddle. Remains one of my favorite pieces of gear of all time.

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