: I plan on building my first boat this year. I have decided to build
: a Great Auk. I am looking for opinions regarding boat length. I
: am 5'9" and 175 lbs. I have mostly paddled ( in 11 and 13
: foot singles, or a 16 foot double, plastic boat ).. on rivers,
: streams, and lakes of various sizes. I am now retired and will
: have time to expand the scope of my paddling locations, as well
: as the time on the water, i.e. 1 to 3 night trips. Based on what
: I have done thus far, and what I may do in the future, I am
: looking for opinions about which length boat to build, the 14'
: or 17', . I hope I have stayed within the scope of the
: forum.....Thank you in advance for any opinion.
I have a 17 foot kayak, but as I get older it gets harder to put on the roof of my car. As you seem at least ten years my senior I would look at as short as possible while still having enough space for overnight trips.
I would think that 15 foot would be sufficient.
If your design does not have a lot of rocker it will still travel well. A 17 footer has a higher theoretical hull speed, but you have to work harder as it is heavier. At normal paddle speeds it won't make any difference. It will probably be easier to paddle the shorter one at cruising speeds in fact.