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  1. #26
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Hurrakin
    Posts
    1,967
    they've moved on to packrafts.
    Did the last unsatisfied fat soccer mom you took to your mom's basement call you a fascist? -irul&ublo
    Don't Taze me bro.

  2. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    12,254
    No pack raft here but i do have a thrill seeker inflatable kayak. Nice to have in the quiver, particularly for folks who have never paddled before.

  3. #28
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Idaho
    Posts
    7,625
    I certainly paddle less. Gas prices are a bummer and I have a great mountain bike trail system a couple hundred yards away. I can spend five hours to paddle a river for two or just go ride for two hours. I can hit the play waves in town but that's still a 3-4 hour production vs just riding for two. If I do drive up to the river we take my raft now. It's more social and the dogs get to go.

    Many of my friends have had kids too which has put a damper on things.

    On the gear side, there was a huge jump in boats for about 10 years starting in the late 90s. There doesn't seem to be huge advances anymore and with SUPs on the scene, even more people are looking at other ways to be on the water.

  4. #29
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Powder Mountain
    Posts
    728
    I don't really know much about kayaking, but these guys are still like its 1999

    Worth a view to see what the youngins are gettin into

  5. #30
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Bend, OR
    Posts
    186
    SUP to get the thrill and learning curve back, kayak 4+ and 5- to feel like you've still got it, and multi-day raft to get in the rhythm.

    Although it always feels good to get the simplicity of living out of the back of your kayak again for a weekend.

    Yeah, people get hurt and scared. But there will always be new boaters.

  6. #31
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    State of Jefferson
    Posts
    267
    I agree that gas prices play a role. Also, in a bad economy fewer folks have the kind of time it takes to learn to kayak.

    College students in the late nineties thought they'd find a good job regardless of grades and majors. I remember thinking how amazing one could live while working very little and mostly boating. A few months of heavy seasonal work would set me up for months of boating every day. There are a lot of local shops that have gone under since the peak of the short boat revolution, 2002 or so. Those shops employed boaters, but more importantly they supported a culture of paddling on a community level.

  7. #32
    Hugh Conway Guest
    think it's bigger - been noticing many places that the "feeder sports" - flatwater kayaking and canoeing don't seem as popular as they once did.

  8. #33
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    12,254
    There was a good article several many years ago(late 90s Outside mag?), it may be mentioned in here, of the death of kayaking. Although it seemed premature at the time its premise is probably true for any sport. Things spin up and spin down per the nature of people.

    White water has always been fringe, talking to friends in the industry they say touring or sea kayaking carries the white water stuff. Far more people live on the coasts and will do the lower impact touring gig than go for the extremo killer death run.

    I myself have been tempered with age and only do up to class 4 and often lesser steams that I passed by in my younger haste to tame the gnar gnar. Still boating but certainly less of it, luckily I have been able to fill in with other things.

    Long gone are the days of composite materials, epoxy and endless sanding/grinding to achieve that supreme hull with which I could make luv to the water goddess. Nowadayz its more I drive by and wave but she does not notice, however there are glints of past glory and that old feeling comes back.


  9. #34
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    1,548
    Quote Originally Posted by skiJ View Post
    ' used to paddle as much as possible --
    Gas was $1.20/gal.

    I travel a lot less with Gas at $4.25/gallon ...

    I am fifteen years Older -

    I Miss floating the rivers . . .
    This is the boat I find myself in as well. Also had a kid who is now 8. I used to have no problem leaving my pretty wife for 8 hours to get a few laps on any given river or creek half a state away. At one point just before we spawned my wife (a CPA) told me "We" were spending more money on gas that anything else in life other than housing.

    I still have gear and try and go when the local stuff runs, but that still only means a few times a year. It's a lot less fun when your gripped by class 4 stuff that used to be a mellow good time.

    Miss it. Love it. Always felt like boaters were tribe. Hopefully when my boy is grown I still have the urge.

  10. #35
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    23
    I don't know, I'm in my mid 40's and I just got into it last season and since then several of my friends have joined me. I live in the SE and have friends that are instructors and it seems to be growing rather than shrinking at least around Asheville but again, I wasn't doing it 2 decades ago. I spend most of the winter skiing in Colorado and then try to get in a couple days paddling, MTB and at least a day at the MX track so it shares time with other sports. I guess it has replaced climbing as I rarely do that any more. My 9 year old is getting into paddling now so I'm sure I'll be doing it for years to come. My wife and daughter enjoy class I and mellow IIs in our IK so we get out every so often with the family.

  11. #36
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Bottom feeding
    Posts
    5,047
    They all bellyak now.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  12. #37
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    In the swamp
    Posts
    5,179
    Yes, every Jerry is now paddleboarding. Many actually get up, paddle for a bit, then get tired and sit on the board for the rest of the time. Itís so hip.

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