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What makes a "touring kayak"? Storage, Stability, Speed, Tracking and ability to stay dry. One of the most noticeable features on a touring inflatable kayak will often be the amount of storage. There will usually be a dedicated storage areas and / or hatches. The added storage capacity is to allow you to load up for a longer trip, such as a multi-day “tour”. You should find space for overnight camping gear and food supplies. Touring inflatable kayaks usually have more bladders, adding stability in the hull, which means they can better handle rougher waters without tipping. See the Advanced Elements Expedition Elite (AE1009XE). Touring inflatable kayaks often have long and narrow hulls, which can make them faster on the water. This can be ideal when you’re paddling across large bodies of water or heading on a long distance trip, as it should make paddling easier and help to minimize fatigue since there is less resistance between the boat and the water. Because of their longer, narrower hull design, you might also find that touring kayaks track more efficiently. This means it may take less effort to keep the boat on a straight path than it might with a recreational boat. However, the long hull may be less efficient at turning and maneuvering in small bodies of water. Most will have the ability to adapt various spray decks, and / or spray skirts, to stay dry in chop.Day TouringAs well as touring inflatable kayaks, you can also get slightly shorter day touring kayaks, which can be either sit-inside or sit-on-top. These can be ideal for shorter trips where you still need to be able to take plenty of gear with you. They may also be slightly wider than traditional touring vessels, which can make them suitable for beginners as well as more experienced paddlers. See the Aquaglide Chelan, or Advanced Elements AirVolution.
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