shopping for a folding kayak?

Folding Kayaks – Outdoor Gear Advice | Outside Online

Folding kayaks can go in just about any water you can find…. Like all kayaks they come in many shapes and sizes, with many of them absolutely as seaworthy (some argue more so) than their rigid-hull counterparts. Many people love their folding boats because they can go literally anywhere. Take one to Europe to explore canals, for instance, or to the South Seas and paddle from island to island. Many travelers can easily handle a backpack and a folding kayak on their trip—that’s only two pieces of luggage, you lazy, ounce-counting slackers!

Before purchasing, you’ll need to think about your own needs and the type of boating you want to do. One very popular boat, for instance, is the Folbot Aleut ($1,480; http://www.folbot.com), a compact little 12-footer with some forgiving habits.

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Although a little pokey, it’s a very beamy boat, so you can easily pack gear for trips up to a week long. That beaminess also makes the Aleut very stable.

Then there’s the Klepper Aerius ($2,458, including shipping; http://www.klepper.com), perhaps the classic folding kayak. It’s a big boat that can handle loads of gear for long trips (payload, in fact, is a whopping 570 pounds!). And, it can easily handle rough, open water. Faster than the Aleut, but still compact enough—at 60 pounds packed weight—to make a good travel-along boat.

Or there’s the Feathercraft Wisper ($2,812; http://www.feathercraft.com), which is similar in length yet narrower than the Aerius. Its materials (aluminum frame, lightweight skin) cut the weight to under 40 pounds—not bad for a big boat! It’ll hold a paddler and gear for long weekends or more, so while not cheap, it’s an excellent investment if you plan to be spending a lot of time traveling and paddling with one of these craft.

If you can, always try to test out a kayak before buying. Remember, you don’t climb into a kayak—you more or less put it on. So fit is important.

Any other recommendations? Inflatable kayaks, for example?

walking Saskatchewan Glacier

I’m not sure how I got talked into it — but the Glaser boys convinced me to put on crampons and harness to walk atop a melting, receding glacier in the Canadian Rockies. It requires a lot more gear and hassle than regular hiking.

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Walking the glacier was pretty cool, actually. But the hike in was even better.

More photos on Flickr.

hiking above Chephren Lake

I had never heard of Waterfowl Lakes Campground, 57km north of Lake Louise on the Icefields Parkway between Banff and Jasper in the Canadian Rockies.

It seems to be mainly populated with visitors from Germany and Austria.

If you are car camping this is a good choice.

We camped beside pretty Mistaya River close to the hiking trailhead. Though the walk in was longer than we wanted, we had great fun playing in the snow fields and waterfalls above the lake.

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More photos on Flickr.

DayHiker.com

DayHiker.com – Extreme, Unique Day Hikes.

We like the sound of that!

Our site posts very few day hikes. If you prefer one-day-only adventures, check out DayHiker.com

They like the Cascade / Paintbrush Loop in Grand Teton National Park.

The Jenny Lake end of Cascade is pretty crowded. But once you clear the crowds the rest of the loop is fantastic.

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