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The 6 Best Kayak Sails of 2021

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Kayak sailing on the Columbia River.

Kayaking is a great way to get outside, exercise, and explore new locations.

One way to improve your kayak experience is with a kayak sail. Especially if you’re looking to take a long trip in your little boat. Also, if you’re already a kayaker but are looking for a way to take your kayaking experience to the next level, a kayak sail will help.

Kayak sails have a number of great benefits. They’re convenient, help get you to places faster, and add speed without needing to exert more of your energy. Whether you’re an expert or a beginner, the perfect kayak sail for you is out there. Today we’re going to help you find it. But first, what should you consider when buying your first, or next, kayak sail?

Here’s a quick list of our top picks for the best kayak sail:

Things to Consider

Design

When shopping for your kayak sail you’ll want to think about what design of the sail. Kayak sails come in three main designs: V-Shaped Sails, Circular Sails, and L-Shaped Sails.

V-Shaped sails, also known as the Downwind Spinnaker, are great if you’re looking to catch speed when facing downwind. While this is a great way to boost speed, it doesn’t give you a lot of mobility when traveling into the wind. Also, some V-Shaped sails can be difficult to maneuver.

Circular sails are the most common type of kayak sail. This is because they are the easiest to use. They usually attach to the center of the kayak, allowing you to pick up speed with the wind.  Unfortunately, this sail also only lets you go in one direction and can’t be moved. But, this is a great place to start if you’re a beginner looking to buy your first kayak sail.

L-Shaped sails are used for the sporty kayak users. These are great because they are able to be moved in order to catch the wind coming from any direction. Because they are mostly used by people with more experience and are the best sail, they are also typically also the most expensive.

Material 

The material of your sail also determines it’s durability. The three main material types are plastic, laminated cloth, carbon fiber, and aluminum. The most common material used in kayak sails is plastic. This is because it is both flexible and lightweight. But, plastic has the potential to crack easily, especially when being used in saltwater. Laminated cloth is another material commonly used to create kayak sails. This material is used because it is stronger than plastic. But, with this strength comes added weight making it more difficult to take the sail up and down.

Now that you know what you’re looking for, take a look at these two great kayak sail options.

Best Bang For Your Buck Sail

VGEBY1 Wind Sail

This lightweight sail is great to be used on any kayak (both inflatable and hardshell). It comes with an adjustable strap allowing it to be fit to many different boat sizes. The sail is made out of PVC material, or plastic, that’s both durable and water resistant. The VGEBY1 Wind Sail is great for beginners because it is easy to use with just two different movements. This allows you to pick up wind when you need it but glide to a stop easily when you need to. This versatile sail is great for kayaks, canoes, and different inflatable boats.

Another thing we love about this product is that it comes with customer service representatives that can help assist you if you have any questions or concerns. Since this is a sail for beginners, it works bests in lakes and intracoastal waterways.

Pros

  • Low price
  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver
  • Clear window so you can see your surroundings

Cons

  • Hard to fold back into it’s box for safe keeping

Best High-End Sail

Hobie Mirage Sail Kit

If you’re interested in getting one of the best sails on the market then this sail may be great for you. It’s priced pretty steeply but is great for the more experienced sailor or a newbie looking to make an investment. Additionally, it is extremely easy to use so if you’re serious about learning to sail a kayak this is great for you too. While this is great for more experienced kayakers, it shouldn’t be off limits if you’re seriously looking to learn about and use your new sail. It can be great for beginners because it’s design makes it easy to take down so you won’t be stuck on the water struggling to control your new sail. But remember, practice makes perfect!

Since this sail is extremely heavy duty it is meant for your hardshell (non-inflatable) Hobie kayak. Enjoy added power without difficult sail maneuvers. This sail is 123 inches tall and has a sail area of 20.25 square feet. It’s not the largest sail but works great in 10-12 mile per hour winds. Also, you can choose from a variety of colors that allow you to be seen by fellow boaters out on the water.

Pros

  • Window for visibility while sailing
  • Extremely sturdy
  • Allows for tricky maneuvers in water

Cons

Conclusion

Kayak sails come in a number of shapes, sizes and prices. But, depending on your overall skill level and where your next adventure is taking you, there is a sail out there that will work great for you. Overall, circular shapes are the most common for beginners and moderates. Start there and you’ll have your new sail in no time.

But, if you’re already a great sailor, find a sail that is extremely durable and allows you to maneuver the waters easily.

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