Have you ever played that game where try to decide which animal you’d most like to be… you know, if you got to just sort of morph into one sometimes.
I know you’ve done this. In a world where the Animagus and Warg are practically common lingo (not to mention Animorphs… and I could go on), even as a supposed adult most of us have probably spent more time pondering this than previous generations.
I’m never able to settle on just one animal, but the kinds I bounce between can always either fly far or swim far. I guess because I can’t do either of those things.
Don’t get me wrong, I love hiking. But it’s pretty awesome to see things from less normal perspectives, like up in the air or out on the water looking back towards land.
The flying thing is going to take a while to get sorted (oh but believe me, that’s going to happen) — but a water option is easy… Right?
We didn’t think so. Kayaks can be relatively inexpensive as far as boating options go, but still well outside our budget. But we’re dreamers and will sometimes just randomly start looking into how to get what we want, and we got SO LUCKY.
While researching what sorts of tandem kayaks are around (tandem so that Andy can take on the bulk of the paddling), we found this amazing deal on an inflatable kayak (the deal actually still appears to be running, if you’re curious).
We hadn’t been originally thinking of an inflatable (what if it pops?!), but we watched way too many YouTube videos about these things and read many more reviews, and our worries were put aside. Even better, we don’t have to get a roof rack for it, which is a huge cost avoidance all by itself — we just toss it in the trunk or the back seat.
When we got it, we of course had to set in up right away. Which meant right in our living room. Our dog was obviously one of the first to board.
Then we demonstrated our paddling prowess.
The set came with two paddles that compact down (you can disconnect each at the middle to split into halves) and super comfy inflatable seats. And it all rolls up pretty nicely, weighing just over 30 pounds.
Here it is all packed up, with our life jackets thrown in too (just standard PFDs, so they take up a pretty solid volume).
Andy’s a pro at packing things into smaller than logical containers, and he thinks we can bundle all this up into a regular backpacking pack. Fingers crossed, because that would make trekking into a more remote launching point way more feasible. As is, the bag it came with only has one strap so toting it around is kind of blah.
Fall is of course not the ideal time to be trying to use a kayak, and in true Pacific Northwest style the weather has taken a downward turn lately. But we’ve gotten out a bit.
Our maiden voyage was a quick float test in Detroit Lake in the Cascade Mountains. My parents were out visiting, so my dad got to test it out too (it’s him and me in the photo below).
We weren’t sure about this inflatable kayak business after that initial run, but have since realized that we didn’t inflate some parts well enough — so it felt a little unstable for that first test. But I think we’ve got it now, so just brace yourself for many more kayaking stories to come.
I’m sure there will be lots of
mess ups learning to share.
Anyone have an awesome kayaking trip to recommend? A spirit animal you’ve channeled? Share in the comments below!