How To Pick Your Best Kayak Paddle

Cheap paddles are heavy and durable. Light paddles take less work to use.

The right paddle is a critical piece of every kayaker's angler's kit. But depending on how you use your kayak, the most expensive paddle might not be the best one. The first decision you need to make is to decide what material your paddle should be made of. There are three main types. Plastic, fiberglass, or carbon fiber. The biggest difference between these types (particularly when it comes to how much they cost) is how much each type weighs.

Cheaper Paddles Weigh More Than Expensive Paddles

Cheap paddles are heavy. Light paddles take less work to use. The less quickly you tire, the faster you can go over time. If you use your paddle a lot, especially traveling over long distances, even small differences in weight will make a big difference in how far you can go without tiring yourself.

Fiberglass Paddles

Carlisle Magic Plus Kayak Paddle
Fiberglass paddles are medium weight, very durable, and less expensive than carbon fiber paddles.Carlisle Paddle Gear

Carbon Fiber Paddles

AQUA BOUND Manta Ray Carbon 2-Piece Kayak Paddle
Carbon fiber paddles are the lightest paddles. They’re great for traveling long distances but are the most expensive kinds of paddles, and are not as durable as plastic or fiberglass paddles.AQUA BOUND

Plastic Paddles

SeaSense X-1 Kayak Paddle, 84-Inch
Plastic paddles are the heaviest and most durable paddles. They’re also the least expensive. If you don’t paddle far to fish, or do a lot of banging around on rocks, a plastic paddle might be perfect for you.SeaSense