For years I have been dreaming of owning a sea kayak. I went on my first kayak tour in the Magdalen Islands in 2004 and have loved it ever since, without ever getting the opportunity to do much of it. The costs related to it, mainly storage and getting the rack to carry the kayak around on my car kept me back, as well as the price of the kayak itself. I live in an apartment and there was no easy way to store a 16-foot kayak in my house. I also try as much as possible not to have hobbies that make me too car-dependent.
Therefore, I got really enthusiastic a few months ago when stumbling on the Kickstarter campaign of a new company called pakayak. Pakayak was started by four people from Connecticut. Their main product is called a pakayak, which is a kayak that splits into 6 sections. It is only 3 feet and a half when stored. I had previously seen foldable and inflatable kayaks. The inflatable ones don’t offer the same performance as a hard kayak. The foldable ones were interesting, but their storage capacity kept me back as well as a concern for their durability (maybe I’m wrong on this, I have not thoroughly researched it). I thought the section kayak was a great idea and read all I could on their campaign, development process, company and product.
The pakayak team have done many demonstrations of their products over the summer of 2016 but they were never in a location that was convenient for me. I read the reviews from people who had been to the demos and had actually tried one and that convinced me: I pledged for one. The six sections are attached together with clamps and do not let any water in. Pakayak claims that their product performs like a traditional kayak, which is supported by some of the reviews of people attending their demos.
Anyone familiar with the crowd-funding process will know that this type of “product purchasing” is actually a leap of faith on the buyer’s part. There is no guarantee that the creator you fund will deliver the product or that they will deliver on time. Funders have to base their judgement on the seriousness of the campaign prepared by the project developers, their credibility, and product demos if you are able to attend one. Since the pakayak sells for a substantial amount, I was a little nervous so did a lot of research before submitting my pledge. My very own pakayak is supposed to be delivered in April 2017 and I am very excited! I would forgive some minor delays but as I am planning to use it next summer on my “Around René-Levasseur Island”. trip, so I do hope that I get it before August 2017!