Kayak Stores, Rental Shops See Growing Interest in Getting Out on the Water

Kayak stores and rental shops are seeing more people getting out on the water this summer.

“For a few months it was absolutely dead and then it exploded,” says Ed Spyker, owner of Paddle Sports Wearhouse & Factory Outlet in Scottville.

Spyker says they usually have 175 kayaks on these shelves during this busy season, but now, they have seven left in the store.

“We can’t get enough product to fit the needs. Most people want products and kayaks, but we just can’t get them in fast enough.”

Gordie Kuehn from Cheryl’s Landing & Marina in Cadillac says more people are anxious to get out on the water after months of staying indoors.

“Just plain getting out, you’re out on the water, you’re in the sun, you’re not at home cooped up, you’re out,” says Kuehn.

He says his amount of kayak rentals has grown throughout the years, but this year, he’s even seeing more people rent during the week.

“Especially the kayaks, we’re seeing a little bit more of that, maybe after work or their day off, like that, I’m seeing more kayaks during the week, which is good for everybody,” says Kuehn.

Both Kuehn and Spyker say more people are turning to kayaks because they’re easy to use.

“On a flat day like today, it’s pretty easy even for a new person,” says Kuehn.

Spyker says, “People that have never been on the water before on kayaks are coming in. They want to get out on the water. They want to get out an recreate.”

But Spyker says when you put that paddle in the water it’s important to stay safe while having fun.

“First and foremost, wear a life jacket and secondly, get a little education on how to use your watercraft,” says Spyker. “Even when you’re out in the wilderness, out in the woods, out in the water, still need to be safe.”