September 2007

Paddlers Notebook

BIC Makes Pens And Kayaks Too!

By Kayak Jay
After many columns about the differences between sit-on-top (SOT) kayaks, and sit-in kayaks (SINK) or deck boats, the world of kayaking has changed.  In an earlier column I described a kayak made by the BIC company that combined an inflatable hull with a solid bottom.

When deflated, the boat folds together to form a suitcase with wheels.  While I have yet to see this boat in the flesh, it offers a good compromise for the traveling kayaker or the SUV owner who doesn’t want to lift to the roof.

Now the company has come up with a new product to settle the issue for those who can’t decide between a SOT and a SINK. It is called the SCAPA. The description says —
“Expanding well beyond pens and lighters, BIC Sport’s Scapa will rewrite your definition of sit-on-top, and light a fire under your touring tail. Call it a convertible: Snap on the removable hard deck ($249) and spray skirt ($69) when the weather gets rough, then switch to sit-on-top mode when the sun comes out. This chameleon is available in BIC’s new Lite Tech hull that is 30 percent lighter than TST plastic.”

Specs: 14 feet, 5 inches; TST, 46 pounds, and Lite Tech, 30 pounds.

For those who remember Bic as the ballpoint-pen maker, you have some catching up to do. The company manufactures champion-style surf boards, wind-surfers, sailboats, and four new sport kayaks. Go to their Web site: and select SCAPA for a demonstration of top and topless use.

And, On The Home Front
On the home front, the new Peoria Paddle program has just come out with their fall schedule. You will be able to try touring in a kayak or take a comprehsive lesson every month until the holidays.

The Peoria classes are the best deal in town for anyone who wants to give kayaking a try with a minimum of investment. Special classes can be arranged for groups by calling Kevin Naughton at (623) 773-7513. Please check the City of Peoria Web site or call Kevin for more information.

The Lake Pleasant Paddlers had a full moon last month, and has super trips planned for September. Give Terry Gerber a call at (602) 372-746 0 x 202, or e-mail him at  for more information. Ranger Gerber is working with the City of Peoria on an agreement to make kayaks available for the Lake Pleasant paddle trips.

For Kayak Jay, paddling is about having fun on the water, and the best way to do that is to forget about bigger and better, and focus on what you enjoy doing.

Any questions on kayaking in Arizona? You can reach me at, or (602) 359-1354.