KASK Member Survey results – 2016

A typical current KASK member is a male, in their 50’s or 60’s, owns multiple kayaks, paddles regularly throughout the year, typically doing day paddles or weekend paddles and consider themselves to be either of intermediate or advanced skill level.

This is according to our latest member survey from over hundred responses. Here are the complete survey results:

A. The responses

  1. Out of the members who responded, 75% of the members were male.


2. Majority of KASK members (70%) were in their 50’s and 60’s. There was a clear lack of twenty something paddlers in the responses.


3. Most of the KASK members live in the big population centres of Auckland and Canterbury, followed by a sizeable chunks in Wellington, Waikato, Northland, Nelson, Bay of Plenty and Tasman.


4. Over 70% of the respondents admits to having multiple kayaks, with 20% owning five or more kayaks:


5. 80% of the paddlers said they paddle regularly, with 20%  admitting to paddling rarely. We drilled further into respondents who paddle rarely and their responses can be seen under section B – the story below the main results.


6. Most respondents prefer day paddles with friends and family. Nearly half of the respondents also like weekends paddles with overnight camps. Only 25% love expeditions and long distances. Interestingly, only 8% of the KASK members admitted to kayak-fishing paddles.


7. The majority of the KASK member-base rated themselves as intermediate or advanced paddlers. Experienced intermediate paddlers made the bulk (>50%) of the members who responded. 25% of the respondents considers themselves advanced paddlers capable of all sea conditions with or without others!


8. KASK members take rescue practice very seriously – with 85% practising at some stage – most at the beginning of the paddle season. However 15% admitted to never practising their rescue techniques.


B. Drilling into the story behind the data

B1. We asked the respondents who rarely paddle to explain why. Here are the responses:
Paddling for me is about getting myself into nature, lately I have been getting there by other means.
Too busy working
recovering from wrist injury
Other interests get in the way!
Age and opportunity. I like to paddle in the Marlborough sounds but only get there once or twice a year.
Weather, other commitments / activities e.g. mountain biking
Need to join others – no local club – but may get on facebook and get some connections – have paddled solo and done many multi day with groups
I paddle for fun . Fish surf adventure. Too old to race hard now.
Weather permitting I paddle at least once per week, but in the midweek. I like to get away on two or more “expeditions” of five days or more each year.
been walking and cycling a lot more than I used to.  Kayaking club trips are boring now that the bureaucracy has limited them, and made leading more about paperwork than on the water ability
But I don’t seem to have so much time these days 🙁  We mostly paddle in the winter – nicer weather here in Nelson, and the beaches get incredibly crowded with tourists in summer.
Long Workhours ,Shoulder issues unable to keep up with club members,working on Sundays when Club trips happen, general lack of energie
Because I have children.
Time; no-one to paddle with; no roof rack at present.
summer holidays and the odd day trip locally in CHCH
Handling too tough.  Now odd outings in double…
Work,motorbikes etc
B2. We asked the respondents who regularly practice rescues, what types of rescue techniques they practice. Here are the responses:
How regularly do you practice rescue techniques? This includes self rescues, assisted rescues and rolling – What types of rescue techniques do you typically practice
capable at rolling but should pracise deep water re-entry more often just in case.
Scramble, paddle float; T-rescue, Eskimo roll, re-entry and roll
Rolling, John Wayne
Self rescue, paddle float
The kayak is very stable and we are usually with others. We carry a pump and communication devices etc.
paddle float self rescue. Eskimo roll.
re-entry, when I fall out in the surf.
retrieving others, getting back in the boat after capsize
T rescue
existing and entering kayak using a stirrup rope and spare paddle technique learned at two safe boating courses
New generation boats make this question redundant. It is not fun if you need to put so much into the above.
Self rescue with paddle float, and assisted rescue using leg-up technique.
Self rescue on overturning and aiding another person.
Rolling wet exit and entry/ re-entry rol. Occasionally practicve paddle flaot and rescue with a buddy
I roll often and demonstrate all types of rescue T-X hand of God……
self rescues of all forms, plus assisted rescues with my regular paddling partner
X, rolls,self rescue,John Wayne etc
Wet exit, re-entry solo or assisted, assisted roll.
Annual rescue day with club. I like Scoop technique, we do Paddlefloat rescue and there is on Paddlefloat rescue without the splits that I have forgotten already but it is brilliant
re-entry – assisted & solo (paddle float)
Kids and I play capsizing games on sit on top but not from sea kayak.
Self and assisted rescues with and without sling, in calm and in moving waters.
Buddy Rescue and Paddle Float Self Rescue
paddle float and pump. No longer can roll
Rolls & solo re-entry
I should do more float rescue practice, i surf kayak alot so roll alot on these days.  I probably rely on a roll too much and need to practice other techniques more
John Wayne reentry
paddle float, and pair
Roll, paddle float and re entry, Re entry and roll
self and group rescue
Rolls plus reentries. Reentries are a doodle in the Star. Practice per 2 weeks average
Self rescue with paddle float
All in, heel hook, paddle float, T rescue
Paddle float rentery and roll
haven’t for some time
Rolling    Self Rescue
self paddle float, assisted rescues, towing
Fall off/ climb on
assisted rescue and self rescue using my home-made seat squab as a paddle float
roll, re entry and roll, scramble, gordon brown assisted rescue
Roll.  Wet exit, re-entry and roll.  Paddle float entry.
Usually in a pool session or if its hot and I need a cool down.
T and paddle float
T rescues and paddle float self rescues.
Rolling, self rescue, T rescue with kids
Paddle float re-entry. I am looking for a course to learn Eskimo Roll.
I intend to practice self rescue again when the water is warmer again as I have become concerned about my ability to re-enter the boat following knee replacements as they do not bend as far as natural ones.
paddle flat, John.
rolling, self  rescue
Paddle float  and buddy T rescue
Paddle float entry
Roll, Paddle float assisted re-entry
Deep sea rescue   Rolling
B3. We asked the paddlers who rated themselves for more details – and here are the responses:
None of the above describe me. I would say I am an experienced intermediate with enough skills to get me home but not so many that I would get cocky and say that I can handle “All sea conditions”. I have come to realize that I cannot rely on others so I prefer to make my own decisions as to when and   where to paddle.
Confident in most conditions, used to surfing etc
I know no other sea kayakers to paddle with
Our Kayak stable and seaworthy but we are also suitably cautious.
Don’t need friends closeby for most paddles
Intermediate to advanced – cautious though
used to be. strength now rules this out
I cannot roll.
I dont promote paddling alone. but often take out groups that are dependent on me.
As I get older I realize seamanship and good decision making is most important. Skills and knowledge and understanding gained over the years is what it is all about.
… although I prefer not to go out alone – just from the s**t happens point of view.
Used to be experienced intermediate but lack of physical fitness and injury puts me in to novice class
Can’t handle ‘all sea conditions’ – no-one can.  But I don’t need friends for ‘rough stuff’…  So somewhere between 1 & 2
I know my limits.
I have lost skills and confidence since moving to the Buller and getting fewer opportunities to spend time in the kayak.
quite experienced, but roll is now unreliable and a re-entrance difficult due to shoulder and knee issues. hence fair weather paddling
Still haven’t mastered the Roll, dammit.
Trying hard to inprove
 I enjoy rougher water(1m waves and 25knots wind) for the challenge. I have never been capsized by wind  or waves but have practised the paddle float method of re-entering the kayak. Capsizing the yachts I sail is a common experience.   The closest I have been to capsizing was on Paremata Harbour when a  wind gust caught my high paddle blade pushing me over. I brought the paddle down quickly and took evasive action.
Got my first kayak at 10
B4. We asked people who paddle which clubs (if any) they paddle with and here are the common responses:
Yakity Yak
Canterbury sea kayak network
Northland Canoe Club
Northshore canoe and youth club inc.
Hawkes Bay Canoe Club
Nelson Canoe Club.
Otago kayak Club
Auckland canoe club
BOP sea kayakers
Wgtn SKN
Southland Sea Kayak Network
QLD Sea Kayak Club
Gone Kayaking

Though some went on to say more than just a club name:

Was with Yakkity yak but haven’t had time, Ruahine W.W.Club, Palmerston North C.C
Ex Northland Canoe Club  KASK  Joined both twice over the years, but always drift away again.
canterbury sea kayak network, down river kayak club canterbury,  canterbury white water club, kask
I go to CSK weekends at Okains Bay
KASK, Kupe CC, Welly Paddlers
None- wanted to do a refresher river course this year for playing In surf mainly but not enough time.
Yakityyak (Auckland ) leader,  Auckland canoe club
Yakity Yak Club.  Final comments; I go out frequently on my own so have techniques and equipment to assist with safety:  – Always check weather forecast  – I paddle against the wind first, and consider the  tide should I become tired in an emergency.  – I dress for the water temperature as a safety precaution. I believe I could last for 12 hours in the water.   – Communication, PLB, VHF radio, mobile phone in waterproof bag, single handheld flare.  It is my impression that most experienced kayakers do  not dress for the water temperature and would suffer from hypothermia quickly if in the water.  Have considered whether it would be appropriate for a person of my experience and strength to attend the KASK forum. My objectives would be to learn and go on a trip afterwards?
And lastly – the most answered free text question – what type of kayaks you have. Here are the responses – I left them as presented – please see if you can spot your boat or your response:
P&H Delphin surf  Prijon Barracuda  Necky Elaho HV  Current designs Pacifica
Single sea kayak- plastic QK Tasman Express  Double sea kayak- Fibreglass QK Dusky Bay  White water creek boat- Bliss-stick Mystic  White water creek boat- Eskimo Salto (currently for sale if anyone is interested)  White water play boat- Bliss-stick RAD180
Composite Greenland T;   Plastic Sequel  White water Phat
Q Kayak, Shearwater, but would love a sit on surf type kayak as well
Sea Kayak,fishing & whitewater
Barracuda Expedition
Contour 480
Sea kayaks, Southern Aurora by Max Grant  and  an old Nordkapp boat  made Nordski, Blenheim
Necky Elaho
1 double 5.2 m kevlar touring type  1 home built 12ft clinker open canoe
Current Designs Storm.
single sea
2 x Puffins, in case someone else wants to go paddling too.
Q Kayak skua
Q Kayaks – Penguin
2 sit on tops and a seyvlor inflatable.
Paddling perfection, Euro X
Barracuda beachcomber
Storm sea kayak
Penguin Q Kayak my baby bought new last Christmas
Glass plastic and double
I have 8 Kayaks. With 8 plus you can ware an admirals hat. White water. Glass double Race boats folder. 2 sport boats.
One Penguin sea kayak and one sit-upon that I got for my grandchildren to learn the basics on.
Sea kayaks
Paddling Perfection Slingshot  an old Dobbe Double
Euro-X – my everyday boat and love of my life!  our Feathercraft touring double – for overseas adventures  Pirouette old dunger for mucking around in the waves  our Southern Light hardshell double for taking friends out, or for us if one of us feels a bit under the weather
Neck mainly, some Qk, ammuruk doubles and crosswind
QK Penguin
Dura River kayak (remember those?I got one of the last ones made)  Breeze  Squall  Challenge 5  Hubby has got a Storm
Simply NOT enough!!!!
Hardshell (composite) single & double (QK S. Skua & Sisson S. Light)  Folding single & double (Feathercraft Khatsalano & K2)  Racing single (Nick Schade ‘Mystery’ – cedar strip & carbon fibre)  Whitewater / surf single (Perception Pirouette)  … and I don’t need any help to put each and every one to very good use 😉
Penguin single sea kayak and sit on top that fits me and 2 kids. We have radio and locator beacon as we also own small RIB.   I Ve done lots of sea kayaking but pre family so keep it low key now and use kayaks when we away with camper van.
Plastic sea kayak, surf kayak, white water, multisport, s.o.t
One for me (Southern Skua), one for the kids (sit on top thing), and one for exploring with the kids (Sea Bear Packhorse).
2 river/slalom; one river; one sea kayak (plus 2 canadian canoes).
2 sit in sea kayaks; 1 prijon 1 beachcomber  2 sit on seakats
Challenge Sequel
Plastic Q kayak  Derek Wakeling  hand made 6m ply/fibreglass sea kayak Spike
both plastic sea kayaks, sit in – both rigged for fishing (mainly lake)
2 home built (one an aleutian, one fiberglass over ply), 2 plastic sea kayaks, a white water and a wave rider.
Just sold my Tui explorer lite….
Sea Kayaks
Tiderace Pace 17  Tahe Marine Bay Spirit  Paddling Perfection, Packhorse Double
Greenland, Sequel, 2 “working boats” (Sit on top fishing yaks)
Multisport, Whitewater, Surf, Sea Kayaks im paddle mad, my garage looks like the one in your survey photo!!!
Polar Bear, Sea Bear, Current Designs Storm (X2), Dobbie Double (Taurt), Crosswinds Double
Puffin, Looksha IV, Seabear packhorse
Tasman Express
JKK Eclipse  Eco Bezhig
1 x QK Composite Sit-In Touring & 1 x Barracuda SOT Fishing
1 x double beachcomber  2 x single Star  1 x Dagger Outburst
Penguin sea kayak
Sea sit in and Sea sit on
A Kevlar/ carbon Foveaux Express and a Feathercraft folding expedition Double
  1xDancer  3 single sea kayaks.1home made strip plank.1 Qkayaks penguin.1 sisson  selkie,(my wifes)  1double seakayak crosswind.  1 downriver racer, Andrew Martin sprinter,(my wifes)
Sea kayak – 1double                      1 single  Whitewater – 1
Five sea kayaks: Tiderace XporeM and Vortex, Tahe Greenland T, Nick Schade Petral and Shearwater 14, both built by myself.
Barracuda Albatross, Q-kayaks Maximus, Viking Profish, VOK explorer
Home built strip and ply fibreglassed sea kayaks
Home built strip and ply fibreglassed sea kayaks
Barracuda beachcomber single & double
2 Penguins  1 Think Uno ski  1 Swallow. ( multi sport )
1x Q-Kayak Shearwater (plastic novice sea kayak)
sea, rudder x1  sea skeg x2  sea double x 1/2
A cedar strip home made job. Designed by Ocean one, cirrus model. Also have a plastic combat for rolling practice, it’s easy to move around.
Greenland T
Penguin, Challenge 5 and Scrambler sit-on-top
1. Challenge Sequel for 11 years.  2. QK Torres. 10 years old recently purchased.
eco-bezig  sea bear (ply)  Southern light  novacraft narrow thing that I can’t squeeze into
Both beachcombers
Barracuda Beachcomber
Tahe Marine Reval Midi, Current Designs Storm, Barracuda outbacker double, cobra maurauder fishing kayak, bliss stick huka WW, another WW boat, 2x feathercraft K1
Q-kayaks Skua  Keep thinking about a cheap sit upon for grandchildren to play in.
Sea kayak – Skua
Southern skua,pay boat
tasman express elite  eco bezhig
Sea x2 ,surf , sit on, SOF, SUP, dingys
Sea Bear single sea kayak  Sea Bear double sea kayak
Paddling Perfection – one single and one double..
Albatross  Mirage 580  Skua
1sea kayak & 2 small recreational
Narpa single  Sewn and taped ply double (not bulk-headed)  Surfyak
Sea kayak+A78:A89s, multisport
K2, multisport
QK Squa
1x QK Skua + 1xGT


The survey was conducted in Dec 2015-Jan 2017. Special thanks to Shawn Walsh for his help with the survey.


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