15 September 2011

VIDEO: sailing in swell with Flat Earth Sails

This sea kayak trip was all about sailing.
We lucked out and had good sailing winds every day on the water.
Admittedly we had to launch a day later than scheduled since the winds reached 30 knots and we would have to paddle into it.

select 720P if you have high speed Internet connection
On the return leg the winds shifted in the opposite direction and blew on our stern again.
And while we did have some 25 knots periods the sails never felt overpowered and stability of the kayak felt always very solid.
The seas were not developed enough to be able to surf a loaded boat just by paddling ( I hear some naysayers commenting: use a proper paddle :-)... but with the sail deployed it was relatively easy to catch waves.
If you have not tried sea kayak sailing yet, I strongly recommend give it go; windy days will suddenly become a welcome diversion.
Sail details here



  1. Hi Gnarly. Looks like fun water to paddle / sail. Interested in the camera you use for this stuff - Go Pro? Also - do you use more than one? Best or preferred positions to mount it? Preventing condensation / fogging of casing? etc

  2. Will send me a private email.

  3. Hi Gnarly, very nice video! What a wonderful sailing day!!!
    Thank you!


  4. Nice video, think I may have to sort myself out one... Can see myself having some long upwind slogs after getting carried away though ;)


  5. John, the upwind slog is not necessary unless your taken route must include downwind sailing.
    If I go out just sea kayak sailing and not necessarily have a given destination in mind that is downwind I can use a FEKS to sail across the wind (90 degrees) to then eventually turn around and use the wind again for the return trip. On a good sailing day I can do very little paddling but cover a lot of distance. FEKS are not just downwind sails, they are really efficient sails. The only thing stopping a sea kayak mimic a sailing yacht is the lack of a deep keel. I can use about 220 degree of travel from a given wind direction.
    Pointing the sail hard into the wind still works but the sea kayak drifts enough to kind of "ferry glide".

  6. That sounds workable, couple I have seen were definite downwind jobs only. Think I may have found my Christmas present :)

    Thanks, John

  7. Well if I wasn't converted already, surely that video would do it!


  8. Sweet video. I like the sails,and it looks like you were flying down those waves. I've been thinking about getting one of the WindPaddle Sails before my next long trip.

  9. Bryan, sails are great fun indeed and they aid sea kayak travel to the point of making some long distance passages much easier when the wind is blowing.
    The WindPaddle however is a downwind-only sail and offers limited direction compared to a FEKS. Sails ain't sails :-)


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