I bought the Oru Kayak because A.) I don’t have a lot of space/garage, B.) I tend to go on long road trips and sleep in my car and at the time I didn’t have a roof rack, and C.) I love kayaking ever since the first time I kayaked around the coral reef in Australia.
I bought the Oru about a year ago and my first attempt at learning to fold her up origami style was a mess. I found a random youtube video on folding the kayak that offered no real help and quickly gave up in frustration. I left the poor thing out in the dark cold of the middle of my living room half folded and forgotten.
The next day I decided this time I would not give up or surrender. This time I would be smarter and instead of following instructions from a random youtuber I would go to the website and follow their instructions. After a mere 20 minutes I was at last successful!
I immediately carried her out to the pool and gave her a spin. Sadly, when I brought her back in, while trying to refold her back into her original form I broke the front strap. Luckily REI replaced the strap and installed it for me for free when I brought it back in. While in the store, as would happen seemingly ever after, I was peppered with questions by random people passing by that are amazed by my new found origami skills. Or rather by the fact that the kayak folds up and still manages to float without springing a leak.
Although I love the Oru kayak’s compact and light nature the true reason I love it, as I would feel for any kayak, is that it gets me out on the water. I’ve kayaked rivers, oceans, and lakes with it and have loved the freedom it provides. Even though at times I get nasty looks from fishermen when I wake up early and head out on mist covered lakes to watch the sunrise as it starts to peek over the horizon. I love going out on the ocean and watching waves crash over my bow. I love when I’m on a lake and can just lay back, throw my legs over the side and soak up the sun, as gentle waves rock me back and forth.
If I had to come up with a con for owning the Oru kayak over a regular one, it would be having to disassemble it. The assembling is fine, for me it’s like a Zen puzzle moment that I actually quite enjoy. However, when I’m done kayaking and ready to go home it takes awhile to dry it off and then begin the process of loosening all the straps so I can then use my origami skills to refold it becomes tiresome. Sometimes it would be nice to just be able to throw it up on top of the roof of my car and not have to deal with any of that after a long day of kayaking.