With all the pedals and propellers at Outdoor Retailer tradeshow in Salt Lake City, it was possible to forget that folks paddle kayaks. Luckily for the hold-outs, Bending Branches and Accent Paddles have some exciting new sticks for 2017.
Starting on the entry level end of the market, Bending Branches added the Angler Rise paddle to their line of excellent blades. The paddle has an aluminum shaft and poly-pro blade for no-nonsense performance. Vinyl pads on the shaft keep hands in the right place. The fixed-length paddles come in 250 to 260 cm length. The blade features Bending Branch’s famous hook removal notch. At 37 ounces, this paddle won’t weigh you down. Bending Branch’s design and construction keep the shaft solid and the blades stiff for better-than-expected performance. At $74.95 the paddle is a great value for a tough blade.
On the other end of the spectrum, Accent Paddles has added the Robert Field Signature model paddle to its line-up for 2017. This all carbon fiber paddle uses the most advanced materials and construction to come in under 28 ounces at $450. I like the ABS edge that adds stiffness and toughness to the outer edge of the blade. The adjustable shaft can be lengthened from 240 to 260 cm in five-cm increments. The blade has a foam core so there is no ridge on the backside that would make more noise on entry and exit. Accent also improved their Canon Wave Angler paddles with a smooth glass finish for better feel and look for $129.
Accents line of angler paddles got a new leader. Robert Field’s signature model (far left) is full carbon with ABS edge on the blade.
Canon Paddles Wave Angler (left) offers better looks and better feel with a sanded, glass shaft and embossed measuring stick.