Ultralight Paddle opinions

Any owners of the Ultralight Paddle? Would like to get opinions, likes and dislikes. I would be using mainly for glacial river crossings on extended hikes.

Thanks for any help,

I know that Ryan Jordan at backpacking light did a podcast review of the Ultralight. I think can find it at www.packpackinglight.com.

I worked on the development but haven’t used it as much as I’d like since then. Breadth of river & urgency of crossing seem like relevent factors for this use. If the crossing is sufficiently forgiving, I imagine you could get away with a couple “ping pong paddles” made out of plywood, for this purpose. I’d say the ultralight would represent a high-midpoint in weight and propulsion: both less than a standard paddle, but much closer to “real” paddle than a could hand-paddles.

Thanks Shaggy! Is there a paddle you would recommend? I as thinking the Splat but it sure is heavy. I like the ping pong paddle idea. I would feel more comfortable with a real paddle on those windy days.

Thanks again for your help!

I think it really depends on usage, YakAk… in this case, the size of the lakes and the degree of windage. If it’s not something huge and a “too much wind to claw upwind to the other side” scenario isn’t really a problem, I don’t see why hand paddles wouldn’t work fine, at less weight - but if those lakes are periglacial, your hands might get really cold.

There are also intermediate cost, lower-quality paddles out there… think “between pool toy and Ultralight quality”. You might check at a sporting goods store and see what’s available for $25 if you don’t feel you need a “real” paddle in terms of durability and longevity, etc., but want something more than hand paddles.

The Ultralight is designed around the non-disposable philosophy, so it’s supposed to work for long-term regular use, and be repairable by the manufacturer. If your use is pretty low key / intermittent, those something a little lower key might work fine as a long-term solution. The ultralight is a bit like the Scout boat, which it was designed to go with: a specialized experiment in combining minimized profile with comparatively high longevity/durability.