Whitewater Forum: Self Support Kayaks
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Self Support Kayaks

Printed From: ProfessorPaddle.com
Category: General
Forum Name: Whitewater Forum
Forum Discription: Open Discussion Forum. Whitewater related subjects only
URL: http://www.professorpaddle.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=13747
Printed Date: 24 Sep 2018 at 11:24am

Topic: Self Support Kayaks
Posted By: megspk
Subject: Self Support Kayaks
Date Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 10:44am
I've been looking a lot at the crossover kayaks for self supporting whitewater trips. I know some are newer to the market. Does anyone out there have any advice or experience with these boats?
I want one that is safe to paddle up to easy g4 rapids and would also be a good boat for say a longer trip like the Grand Canyon.
I've been looking at the Remix XP9/10, the Dagger Katana, and the Pyranha Fusion. I know there's a Stinger out there too, but I don't think I want something that long.
Does anybody know if the recommended weight includes gear or is it just the paddler?
I also want a boat that has the ability to build a groover into it. I know you can do that in the Remix, but I'm not sure about the other two boats.
Thanks ahead of time for any awesome advice!

“A strong person and a waterfall always channel their own path.” -Unknown

Posted By: BrianP
Date Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 10:50am
Try a stinger or greenboat before you say you don't want one, you might change your mind.

Posted By: phil
Date Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 5:16pm
You can use whatever you like. If you're going to self-support a long trip like the GC, the extra capacity is nice to have, but for shorter trips a modern river runner or creeker is fine. Part of the fun is figuring out how to pack light.

Also, if your ambition is to do the grand, keep in mind that there's a ton of flatwater, and a boat with a fast hull like the green boat, stinger or one of the older high volume longboats will serve you well.

There's some stuff out there about building a groover into the front pillar, but unless you're scrapping for space you can just throw some end caps on a PVC pipe and keep it anywhere you like. Wag bags are awesome too, especially for shorter trips.

Posted By: Ellingferd
Date Posted: 04 Feb 2014 at 6:01pm
I hear you can do the selway in a playboat.....

Posted By: phil
Date Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 2:46pm
I guess you could try, but where would the beer go?

Posted By: chipmaney
Date Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 2:50pm
self-support is less about the specific boat and more about proper planning and packing.

I for one would not pay 1k for another boat when my creek boat will suffice just fine. Nor would I buy a boat I would only use for 1-2 trips a year. If you don't already have a boat, then I suggest getting one that is good for more than just packing away gear.

sitting all alone on a mountain by a river that has no end

Posted By: jcboaterboy
Date Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 3:04pm
Shane Benedict has a great recent write-up on his blog (http://shanesliquidlogic.blogspot.com/) about their recent GC trip in Stinger XP's and Remix XP's.  Obviously it's a marketing piece for them, but still very informative about how the boats performed and packing them, etc.

Posted By: phil
Date Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 3:30pm
Yeah that Stinger XP looks dope, best of both worlds.

Posted By: Jason Orange
Date Posted: 05 Feb 2014 at 8:14pm
I have found that using my creek boat and high quality stow-floats gets the job done nicely. I've done plenty of self-support trips ranging from class IIII float style trips to IV-V adventures. Invest in good gear. For example a high quality sleeping bag, bivy sack, and tarp. I agree that good packing makes a difference. Also make sure to pack extra supplies (e.g. food) in case things go south.

I'd be happy to share my "list" essential of gear for self-support trips if it would be helpful.

Self-support boating is the best kayaking I've ever done. I hope that you find the experience equally enjoyable.


Posted By: PanchosPigTaxi
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 1:21am
I'd be interested in seeing your list. Especially if you have any tips on food, I've heard about "dense calorie" foods like cheese and summer sausage because they stow small. I just can't see 4 or so days of summer sausage and cheese being good on the system if you know what I mean...


Posted By: megspk
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 5:26am
I used a Zen for my first trip that lasted 3 days. This year I used my Stomper 80. I liked the Stomper way better than the Zen for the trip and the ease of packing, but it was more difficult to paddle on the flats.

I trimmed down my packing a lot this year and improved my food stash also. I would love to see someone else's "list of essential gear" for a multi day.

I'll be adding a breakdown paddle and an improved headlamp for my next trip.

Thanks for all the thoughts and info on this topic.


“A strong person and a waterfall always channel their own path.” -Unknown

Posted By: Jason Orange
Date Posted: 07 Feb 2014 at 3:27pm
Here's how I pack. I like to eat well, both on and off of the river. I pack a combo of snack foods that also double lunches. For example, I take Hammer-Gel, chocolate, cheese (individually packaged), crackers, jerky, canned smoked fish, Justin's individually packaged nut butters, dried fruit, some type of ramen noodles, and jerky. For breakfasts, I usually do oatmeal and individually packaged nut butter. Dinners, are a combo of homemade and store bought. I will pack cookies that are made at home and also do dehydrated meals. Backpackers Pantry has a decent selection. The bottom line is, take foods that you like to eat and that can double as breakfast/lunch, lunch/snack, etc….Also pack extra. I typically pack 2-3 extra dehydrated meals as backup food.

Posted By: water wacko
Date Posted: 08 Feb 2014 at 1:26am
Meg, I've learned to just take less on self support trips, and at the same time I like to eat well too. It's a little bit of trial and error choosing what to bring and feeling good about what's left in the car. After each trip, pile up all the stuff you didn't use or could get by without. Each trip is a little different and the different aspects should be taken into consideration:

- how many days (more than 3? more than 7?)
- what's the weather forecast? is it below 45 at night? chance of rain? dew overnight?
- how hard is it to abort? Elwha has a trail reasonably close, but hiking out isn't an option most of the way.
- how big is the group (2-4 or 5-10?) the bigger the group the less you need to bring individually.
- food! bring more than enough and make sure it will keep
- how hard is the run (class III or V)

If I'm going on a three day class V self support with one other person, great weather on the O.P. and an 8 mile hike to the put in... my essentials are: a Katydyn water filter, down sleeping bag in a GOOD dry bag, lightweight pad, a few biners, pulleys, prussiks and some webbing for a pin kit. One big Spectra throw bag and a smaller spectra waist bag. A small med kit with athletic tape (works for blisters too if a long approach) Ibuprofen, Antihistamines, antibiotic cream, at least one spare lighter, head lamp and good food, at least 4 days worth. Three meals a day with snacks. I also typically bring a waterproof point and shoot camera that stays in my PFD, a Canon 60D that has its own dry bag and a helmet cam. And batteries. I can buy an SD card that's big enough, so I only need one of those per camera.

Food can become a creative endeavor, the tip I'll offer is to bring what you really like and what will keep for the entire length of the trip. I like pre-cooked bacon, especially for trips with long hikes to the put in. It'll keep 4 days if you keep the food bag out of the sun and do little things to help keep it cool. Near the river? Toss it in. For this example, I'm not bringing a tarp shelter because the weather's great, but it's on the O.P. so there will likely be dew overnight. I can mitigate that by sleeping under a big tree or in some tall undergrowth nestled in somewhere, not right next to the river or out in the open. It'll save weight not bringing a tarp and I can keep my stuff dry if I find a good spot like this. Can I find dry ground? If so I'm not bringing a footprint either. If it's more than three days I might bring some baby wipes, but… the rivers here are cold, and soap and even pack-weight towels are extra weight. Leave 'em. You'll probably bring at least one camera so you can take some selfles or get a few shots of the bears eating the food left you out in camp. Extra batteries?

Is it a hike in? Yes. What's your backpack system? Folks like home made and pre made. I like the ease of a pre made system, but haven't messed around with anything home made yet, so I don't know any better. I've watched others fiddle with home made systems they didn't practice with… all the way to the put in and it made me happy to have my pre made system. The amount of hiking will make you strongly consider what you're bringing, even though you should always consider what you're bringing. You'll be paddling it all down the rapids. Is it a few hours or a few days of hiking? It better be worth hiking it all that way.

Packing and drybags: I like to put things in smaller dry bags and I typically use 3-5 smaller dry bags. Bring a small easy-to-use patch kit as well, that will work for boats and dry bags alike. On day 4 of my last Tsheletshy Creek self support one of my dry bags got a hole in it. I used pond liner repair tape and it worked like a charm. Tape it on the inside. You can get a roll from Home Depot for about $20 and it's well worth it. You'll bring 1/4 to 1/3 of the roll with you, so weight isn't that big of a deal.

One more tip, when you're beginning to dabble with self support style rivers: lay all your stuff out on the floor including base layers and everything else. You can leave your boat and paddle out, but everything else, lay it out so you can see every single ounce you'll be carrying/packing down the river. Look it over, then put it all in a bag and pick it up. Walk around with it. Then, take it back out and see if you really need all that stuff or if you can get away with leaving some of it behind. Try to leave some behind. Then, if you have the inkling, put it all in your boat and pick that up. Now you have an idea.

If you're going for longer than a week, bring a buddy who has a raft. Bring him gifts like good whiskey and beer. He'll be happy to pack your stuff and you'll be happy too. Good luck!

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive." ~Howard Thurman

Posted By: megspk
Date Posted: 10 Feb 2014 at 4:36pm
Has anyone multiday'd out of a Stinger or Green boat?

“A strong person and a waterfall always channel their own path.” -Unknown

Posted By: tiziak
Date Posted: 11 Feb 2014 at 6:58am

Talk to Darren.

If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.

Daniel Patrinellis

Posted By: PaddleGirl
Date Posted: 11 Feb 2014 at 10:24am
there were multiple green boats and a stinger on our grand canyon trip. also liquid logic xps, a jackson rogue, and a pyranha fusion.

everyone loved their boats. the green boats and stinger were so much faster than the crossover style boats, but we all loved having a hatch too. so, i guess my point is, they are all good choices.

no one brought a creeker due to the large amounts of flatwater on the grand.

ETA: I'm sure you can figure out a good groover setup for any of the boats you're considering. on a 10 day trip I put my big groover in the bow since i had a Rogue... on shorter trips i put a smaller one behind the seat.

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