• We apologize for the somewhat convoluted sign-up process. Due to ever-more sophisticated attacks by chatbots, we had to increase our filtering in order to weed out AI while letting humans through. It's a nuisance, but a necessary one in order to keep the level of discourse on the forums authentic and useful. From the actual humans using WCP, thanks for your understanding!

Paddle Suggestions


Aug 28, 2012
My wife and I are both novice kayakers having just purchased a Scorpio for her and a Aquanaut for myself. Having limited experience she is looking for a paddle other than the rental one she is now using. Her initial style of paddling appears to be more of a high angle but she feels like she is still developing a style.

She has a 210 bent shaft Werner Cyprus on order from Alder Creek in Portland. But recently I had a great discussion with Pat Onno who is suggesting that a paddle should not be as pigeon holed as Werner makes it out to be that you need a particular style of paddle for low versus one for high paddling. He feels that his paddles function in a wider range of styles which is appealing to someone like my wife who is figuring all of this out.

So what advice would you give us in the quest to move on from a rental paddle?


As a former customer of Alder Creek I'd recommend you ask to demo various paddles. The guys there once loaned me an Ikelos for a week long trip; smart move on their part as I and another paddler from that trip both bought werners from them.

I really like the foam core werner paddles, they seem so damn light. The I'm curious to see the new line coming from Lendel though.

Thats the beauty of demoing, you buy the one you like.
Got to second the demoing.

Onno are good paddles (my girlfriend uses one). Good product and price point. And the adjustable shaft is nice for helping you settle a length. But I am not sure I agree that they are usable high or low angle, if that was what he was saying.
Peter-CKM said:
Got to second the demoing.

. But I am not sure I agree that they are usable high or low angle, if that was what he was saying.

This is from the Onno website;

"Touring and Surf Paddles

Several profiles to choose from here. All of these paddles flow seamlessly between high and low angle styles without drama."
I use a 220 Werner Cyprus (bent shaft) in a low angle paddling style. Don't get too caught up in blade shape and recommended applications (hi vs low). A small paddle spoon like the Cyprus can be used for both hi or low.

The foam core Werners are awesome and I would not go back to a standard thin blade. But use them any way you see fit.

I went through the same thing when getting a paddle for my wife. I went by what an instructor told me. He said when he teaches techniques to students he prefers them to have a high angle paddle.

I also purchased my wife a Werner Cyprus bent shaft 210 based upon the width of her boat and help from Werner's customer service. I also went with the smaller diameter shaft because she has small hands. Their high performance carbon paddles are so light and I felt that would help my wife if she had to hold a paddle for any length of time. A heavy paddle versus a lightweight does make a difference at the end of the day.

I went with the small diameter on both my Ikelos and my back up Shuna paddle, I decided that because of my preference of using the thinnest grip I can get on all my mountain bikes.

That is a great paddle, I don't see you or your wife regretting the purchase.

I owned an Onno Full Tour for about a year, maybe two. Length was 218. I bought it without trying it first and that was a mistake. It was a beautifully made paddle, sold for a very good price and the buying experience was first rate. Pat is a great guy to do business with. However, if I had tried it first I would have realized that it wasn't for me and would have quickly moved on to something else.

Perhaps the face shape of the Full Tour has changed since 2005. What I found was that the tenacious catch and absolute zero-flutter was achieved through aggessive blade dihedral. The paddle locked into the water like nothing else I had experienced and produced a tremendous amount of power. That dihedral also kept the paddle "locked" into each stroke longer than I cared for. If I was wanting to end my strokes at my hip I would have to fight the paddle to get it to release. It always wanted to finish each stroke much later than I wanted it to. It dictated the length of each stroke and seemed to force a low angle technique. The aggressive dihedral of the power face created excessive anhedral on the back face severely limiting blended strokes. A typical brace or rudder created an unstable situation where the paddle would dive or balk at releasing. Bow rudders? Forget about it. On numerous occassions I had to let go of the paddle with one hand in order to avoid it pulling over. Very weird and it slowed my development.

I switched to a 210 Ikelos and all that weirdness went away. I did find the 210 Ikelos to be a big stick and I really felt it at the end of the day. I'm now using a 210 BS Cypress for really long gear-hauling days and a 205 BS Ikelos for every day paddling. The 205 BS Ikelos, for whatever reasons, seems much easier on my body.

As I mentioned earlier the face shape on my Onno may have changed in the past seven years. I suppose it's possible, too, that my Full Tour had something other than the stock face shape. Onno has a very faithful following with lots of happy customers. Unfortunately, I can't be counted among them and I cannot imagine that the personality of the paddle I owned would serve any paddler well. A good case for try before you buy.
Here's my 2 cents,as the guy that likes throwing monkey wrench in the gears. I've owned a 215 Cyprus briefly, it was the paddle and the length that the Werner website suggested for me to buy. My normal paddle before(and after) was a 210 Aquabound Stingray, with a whitewater shaft and carbon fiber blades. The Cyprus didn't really do anything for me, I think I enjoyed it less than the Stingray, though the 5cm increase in length over my normal paddle may have something to do with it. Also,I don't think their foam core touring blades are overly tough.
I also have a 210 Werner Camano(custom ordered length) which I really like. My girlfriend uses it when we go touring, I use it for the odd race here and there. I usually have a high-ish angle and quick-ish cadence, and the 210 Camano has plenty of power but feels gentle for paddling long distances(and in a hurry if needed).
I don't think I'll ever go back to a foam core Werner touring paddle again(but their whitewater foam core paddles are actually pretty tough)
rider said:
I don't think I'll ever go back to a foam core Werner touring paddle again(but their whitewater foam core paddles are actually pretty tough)
I've been using Werner foam core carbon paddles for several years now and can't see myself using anything other than a Werner touring paddle (unless of course, something much better were to come along). For touring, I think it's pretty hard to beat a Werner foam core paddle. They're just really, really nice.