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Can one person paddle a tandem kayak?

My wife and I point a 13.5 foot Perception kayak from REI last year and did pretty well together on lakes.  We went on the Verde River Mother's day where the water level was low and discovered that we didn't do well because she gets very anxious about the rocks she thinks we need to avoid(she rides in front) and I am more laid back and it caused arguments.  We have decided that in the future when we go on rivers she will ride in a single kayak and I will ride alone in the back of the tandem.  My question is do I need to put weights in the front seat of the kayak to make is handle OK with just me sitting in the back?  I weight about 230 lbs and My wife weights about 140 lbs.

1 Reply

@ronpaul Thanks for reaching out!

You will likely be just fine paddling alone in the back of your kayak, given how buoyant it is as a sit-on-top, and that it weighs almost 70 lbs. The front end will rise out of the water more, however, so the feel of paddling it and maneuvering it will be different. If you are planning on taking a cooler or some gear we would definitely recommend storing it up front on the tandem. If you do notice a big difference, you might be able to pull over to shore and load up some rocks in a bag or something to add weight. That way you don't have to worry about transporting weights to and from your vehicle.

Hopefully this helps, have fun out there on the water!

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