The Art of Paddle Sailing: Unleashing the Power of the Wind

Old Town Penobscot with Expedition rig
Expedition rig
Expedition rig
Expedition rig
Expedition sailing rig
Sail outhaul
Kicking strap
Expedition rig

Ah, the allure of sailing! The thrill of harnessing the wind’s power and gliding across the water. But what if you’re an open canoe paddler yearning for a taste of sailing? Fear not, for there exists a magnificent solution known as the Sailing Canoe Rig.

A Rig Designed by Sailors, for Sailors

Unlike other auxiliary sail rigs, the Sailing Canoe Rig is the brainchild of seasoned sailors who understand the intricacies of sailing. Crafted with top-quality sail cloth that retains its shape even when the wind picks up, this rig is a masterpiece of design. With a 25 sq ft lugsail, it caters to open canoe paddlers seeking a small auxiliary sail that delivers big on performance.

Harnessing the Wind with Ease

Setting up the Sailing Canoe Rig is a breeze. The sail is raised and lowered swiftly using a halyard, enabling you to embark on your sailing adventure in no time. The beauty lies in the compactness of the rig – all three spars measure a mere 6 ft 3″ in length, allowing for easy packing into a small bundle.

When stowed, the sail is neatly rolled around the boom, keeping it crease-free and ready for action. It fits snugly into the bottom of your canoe, ensuring it doesn’t interfere with your paddling. But when the winds howl, this unassuming rig transforms into a mighty force, propelling your canoe at speeds faster than paddling alone.

Further reading:  The Truth About Miniature Labradors: Debunking the Myth

A Sail with a Unique Advantage

The lugsail shape of the Sailing Canoe Rig offers a distinct advantage. Its ingenious design allows for a larger sail area to be set on shorter spars. Additionally, the sail’s low center of effort minimizes the overturning effect on the canoe, ensuring stability even in challenging conditions.

With this rig, paddle steering becomes a delightful skill to master. A competent paddler can effortlessly navigate the canoe’s direction while simultaneously leveraging the power of the sail. Picture yourself paddling gently to turn into the wind or paddling harder to veer away, adding a touch of your own strength to the wind’s force. It’s a mesmerizing dance of coordination, propelling you forward with astonishing speed.

Discover the Art of Paddle Sailing

The true magic of the Sailing Canoe Rig lies in its ability to be your trusted companion, regardless of wind direction or speed. Even in a modest breeze, you can sail into the wind using a few gentle paddle strokes, reaching speeds of around 4 knots. As the wind picks up, your journey continues into the wind at an impressive 5 knots. This enchanting technique is known as paddle sailing, a highly efficient way to travel.

To grasp its brilliance, consider this – when sailing towards a 6-knot headwind at 4 knots, you actually experience a 10-knot wind over the sail, providing an abundance of forward force. Alternatively, when sailing downwind in a 6-knot breeze while traveling at 4 knots, the sail encounters a mere 2 knots of apparent wind, offering limited assistance. In such cases, utilize your paddle as a rudder behind you to steer with finesse.

Further reading:  The Versatile and Durable Grumman Canoe

Sailing Without Boundaries

It’s a common misconception among paddlers that sailing is only worthwhile in strong tailwinds or when traveling directly with the wind. However, the Sailing Canoe Rig shatters this belief, expanding your possibilities in multiple wind directions and across a wider range of speeds.

Recent developments have enhanced the rig’s controllability, allowing you to unlock its full potential. With an adjustable outhaul, you can alter the sail’s camber, optimizing its shape based on whether you’re sailing upwind or downwind. The boom, equipped with end jaws, elevates the lug for seamless maneuvering through tacks, while the addition of a kicker keeps the sail in optimal twist, maximizing its efficiency.

Embark on Your Sailing Adventure


Ready to embark on your paddle sailing adventure? The Sailing Canoe Rig awaits, offering a complete package that includes a sail on its spars, a mast with rigging, a carrying bag, a mast thwart and mast step, and a cleat for the main sheet.

If you wish to sail into the wind, consider equipping yourself with the Expedition Leeboard, specially designed for this rig. Additionally, explore other accessories such as side buoyancy bags and a lee-board thwart to further enhance your sailing experience.

To place an order or learn more, visit our website UpStreamPaddle.

Breathe new life into your canoeing adventures and embrace the captivating world of paddle sailing. With the Sailing Canoe Rig, your journey will never be the same again.