Kayaking and Canoeing are great for outdoor summer exercise and adventures. The problem with a lot of kayaks and canoes is that they are bulky and require multiple people to help launch them. If you plan on going out on your own or in a small group, try looking for a lightweight version that you can easily lift and carry yourself. Plus if you are just getting into the sport, it is a great way to test it out before investing in the more durable heavier versions. Here are our favorite lightweight kayaks and canoes for summer 2016:
Sun Dolphin Bali SS Sit-on top Kayak
Pros: The Sun Dolphin Bali Kayak is lightweight and easy to carry coming in at only 44 pounds. You can easily carry to and from your car without too much effort. Key features include paddle holders, adjustable foot braces, and protective thigh pads. There is also a covered dry storage compartment in the back and the front is open for easy entry.
Cons: The seat is not cushioned so it might get uncomfortable during longer trips.
Coleman Quikpak(TM) K1 1-Person Kayak
Pros: Our favorite feature of the inflatable Coleman Quikpak 1-Person Kayak is the quick and easy five minute setup so you can get out on the water in no time. The storage backpack converts into the comfortable seat. The tarpaulin bottom is durable to protect from punctures. However if you do get a tear, it has multiple air chambers that will stay open even if one if punctured. It weighs only 18 pounds and easily collapses to fit in your backseat or trunk.
Cons: Because of it’s ultra low weight, it is a little harder to control is choppy water or high winds.
Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak Set with Aluminum Oars and High Output Air Pump
Pros: The Intex Explorer K2 Kayak has low profile which is great for lakes and mild rivers. It has an adjustable seat with backrest and removable skeg for directional stability. It’s made of rugged vinyl and has an inflatable I-beam floor added comfort and sturdiness. It weighs 36 pounds and inflates in minutes. It also comes with two 86 inch aluminum paddles, a carrying bag, a repair patch kit, a U.S. Coast Guard I.D. and a high-output pump for easy inflation and deflation.
Cons: The paddles add weight when carrying from your car.
Old Town Canoes & Kayaks Discovery 119 Solo Canoe
Pros: The Old Town 119 Solo Canoe is very stable and easy to handle. It only weighs 58 pounds, but is well constructed with three-layer roto-molded polyethylene. It has comfortable nylon web seats and durable vinyl gunwales.
Cons: Due to it’s smaller size, it might take a while to adjust to if you are used to paddling in a standard size canoe.
Sun Dolphin Mackinaw Canoe
Pros: The Sun Dolphin Mackinaw Canoe easily and comfortably seats three people. It has a cooler and dry storage compartment under the middle seat. Each seat has it’s own drink holder. It is 15’6” long and 97 pounds. It is the heaviest of all five but it has built in handles for easy transport. It also comes with a two year manufacturer’s warranty.
Cons: Because of it’s size and weight, it would be hard for one person to launch but fairly easy for two people.