Valley kayaks are traditionally “fish-form” i.e. widest point slightly forward of centre. The Etain is more neutral, in fact very slightly Swede form i.e. widest point rear of centre. Swede form kayaks have a different feel, slightly more glide and a perception of speed that is more noticeable because you are now paddling in a narrower part of the boat. Paddling stroke is also less encumbered and there is a general feeling of having less boat between you and the water. Better…no, different… yes! Other features are a hull that has shallow to moderate ‘V’ in cross-section for good initial stability, and rocker that would best be describe as moderate i.e. slightly less than some other Valley boats to provide secure tracking but still enough to provide a lively ride. The Etain also features a removable deck-pod storage-unit in front of the cockpit. Whilst holding the same as a regular 4th hatch/compartment, the advantage is, it can be taken up the beach (or into the car/house) with you. The deck-pod is ideal for things like valuables, snacks, car keys, and small items of safety-kit that you might always want close to hand. Other features of the Etain include a locking point situated behind the cockpit and special attention given to cockpit ergonomics.
The Etain 17-3 is designed to appeal to smaller sized paddlers, those who might need some long trip capability but still want a kayak that behaves when lightly loaded for those day trips.
The Etain 17-5 is designed to offer more “all-round” appeal to regular sized paddlers, those who might need some long trip capability but still want a kayak that behaves when lightly loaded. These same traits also make it an ideal full expedition style boat for smaller paddlers.
The Etain 17-7 is designed to appeal to regular sized paddlers looking for a full expedition style boat with a contemporary feel, the same traits also make it an ideal all rounder for the larger paddler