Hardshell Kayaks or Inflatable Kayaks?

Choosing between a hardshell kayak and an inflatable kayak can be difficult sometimes, especially when you are new to kayaking; both over their own advantages and disadvantages, and it is weighing these advantages and disadvantages up that is the most important thing when it comes to deciding which you will spend your money on. In recent years, there has been huge research into how to advance kayak technology, and there have been huge developments in kayak streamlining. Kayaks can now go faster than ever, and if you are new to kayaking, here is how to make the difficult choice between a hardshell kayak or inflatable kayak.

You must first take into consideration that both have their place; there are places you cannot possibly consider taking an inflatable kayak, and the same goes for hardshell kayaks, they were first developed for their own respective purposes, but now have a huge following.  When you are kayaking you must take your surroundings into consideration and assess whether or not a hardshell or inflatable is appropriate. But if you are going on more calm waters and are a recreational kayaker, then you have a lot of choice between the two.

So, here is how to make that decision effectively and efficiently.

What Makes Inflatable Kayaks Better?

Many people much prefer inflatable kayaks to hardshell kayaks. If you have decided to check these out, then look no further than this comprehensive and all-encompassing guide. Why precisely do people choose inflatable kayaks over hardshell kayaks?

Inflatable kayaks are much easier to carry around with you, as you can pack them into a rucksack and do not require a big truck to carry them around. Just because they are easier to carry, however, does not mean they are any weaker or less durable.  Inflatable kayaks are proven and designed to be much more durable and can withstand bumping into huge, jagged rock faces, they will bounce off of rocks in the case of a collision, and much similar to other inflatable water sports, inflatable kayaking provides you with the use of drop-stitch technology, which is essentially composed of tiny interlocking fibers on the underside of the kayak which will keep you strong, sturdy, and is a tough, tough surface.

The other material used on inflatable kayaks is a very durable type of rubber and PVC, which can make them much more durable and stronger than hardshell kayaks.

What Are The Disadvantages of Inflatable Kayaks?

The downside, however, is that not only can they be very expensive, but it can be very time-consuming pumping them up and deflating them. Although they are easier to travel with, when it comes to actually preparing them for use it can take hours and hours, then hours more to deflate them and have them ready to go back in your rucksack. You also need to make sure that when you are using an inflatable kayak that you wash and dry it thoroughly before you pack it away otherwise your kayak and your bag will absolutely stink!

What About Hardshell Kayaks?

Hardshell kayaks, despite their heaviness and the difficulty required in handling them, they are much easier to go as you can take them from the roof of your truck or car and put them straight into the water and get into it, and as for taking them out, it is much the same; you simply need to put them into the water and go, and you will be perfectly fine and ready to have fun.

This ease and convenience are why many experienced kayakers much prefer the more conventional wooden or plastic kayaks as opposed to the rubber kayaks.

What Are The Advantages of Hardshell Kayaks Over Inflatable Kayaks?

Hardshell kayaks are also known for being much easier to control; inflatable kayaks can jerk all over the place and be quite difficult to use and very dangerous if you do happen to lose control, whereas hardshell kayaks are much easy to maneuver and by being easier to handle, are to a certain extent much safer. Losing control on the water can mean you kill yourself or seriously injure yourself, so it is always much better to have complete control all of the time than risk losing control and injuring yourself. It is a hobby and a sport, after all, and it should be as safe as you can make it.

Although, that is not to say they are death traps, as they are very well crafted and designed for safety. Comparatively, an inflatable kayak has less control than a wooden kayak, but that isn’t to say that you will lose control. Whenever you are doing extreme sports you must maintain a level of safety and make sure that you are as professional and adult as possible, as losing control on a waterway can mean imminent death.

Always be on the ball and pay complete attention to your surroundings.

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