Ready for the Fjords! Crivit 2 Person Kayak £39.99 from Lidl

Taunted we were. Taunted! Twice we walked into Lidls in foreign parts, intent on our usual gathering of vittles only to be confronted by the offer of a boat. You know, in the sections of Lidl which sell all manner of stuff, from petrol generators to colouring books. But only for that day… Go back an hour later and the thing you decided you must have in your life will have vanished, not to be seen for another year, if ever again. In among it all, boxes of inflatable kayaks, for about £30 or £40. Given the fact Dave (our previous Hymer B544) had about enough storage space remaining for a stowaway gnat (after having rammed our other gear in there), we hemmed and hawed over the thing, and twice put the box down.


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Murphy’s law then swung into action as we found ourselves looking out over some of the world’s finest and calmest bodies of water, minds cast back to the air-conditioned wonder of the Lidl ‘stuff isle’. We sat wishing we’d got the boat, and could employ our idle hours ambling off onto the water for a bit, spying the shore from afar. Well, probably from about 10 meters away. Neither of us fancy being blown offshore, our only hope to flag down a passing fishing boat to bring us back!

Flip forwards a couple of years we’re in Lidl Langley Mill (down the road from our Notts home, just over the border to Derbyshire) and up pops the kayak. As it popped up, we swiped at it, flung it in the trolley and covered it with cartons of long life milk to dissuade any potential kayak-snafflers from relieving us of it. Flip forwards a few more days and after a whirlwind of phone calls, insurance sorting, marathon driving, van-inspecting, V5 signing and more driving, we have Zagan the van to put it in.

Our Dave (our previous Hymer who took us around Europe for two years) was a serious trooper, and nothing can top that beast of van in my eyes. He was, and still is, a fabulous adventure wagon – we heard from his owners recently and he’s still enjoying life on the road. Zagan though, is hopefully going to carrying us about for a long old time. Depending on which way the gods are looking, the two year Dave trip might turn into a shakedown compared with our future. Who knows, but we are really pleased that Zagan has an al-ko chassis (double floor), so has a bunch more storage than Dave had. Enough to fit in a kayak anyway.

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“Ah, but!” I hear you seasoned motorhomers say, “what about the payload?”. A very fine question. Dave had a max weight of 3100kg, and Zagan is currently 3500kg. We have tonnes of storage, but do we have enough tonnage to fill it all? Anwser: dunno. A trip to the local weighbridge is required at some point.

So, anyway, we have an inflatable kayak. I just put it together in our yard and it looks fine for what we plan, just a bit of fun, no death-defying paddling across the channel, dodging tankers. I’ve considered taking it to the local canal for a test, but just can’t be bothered. The water’s a gravy-grey colour. There are rumours of dead cows just beneath the surface (well, there were 35 years ago while I was at the local school). The test can wait for a more pleasant splash about somewhere.

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By the way: if you get one, note that you have to use a small plastic see-through sheet to gauge how far to initially pump it up. I managed to miss this until I’d pumped it up, and stretched ours a tiny bit more that I should have. As I’d only pumped it up ‘a bit’ to photo it, you could easily do the thing a mischief. Read the instructions – how many times do I have to tell me! Some stats on the kayak:

Cost: £39.99 from Lidl UK, June 2015
Payload: carries two people up to 160Kg total weight
Size (inflated): 325cm by 91cm by 46cm
Size: in supplied carry bag: 80cm by 30cm by 25cm
Weight: 8.8Kg (including a plastic foot pump, not supplied with kayak)
Lifejackets: not included

Bring on those fjords folks! Right, time to get a bite to eat then walk back up to Zagan to sit in him and do some dreamin’.

Cheers, Jay

OurTour Motorhome Essentials Packing List
Introducing....Zagan the van!!
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12 Comments

  1. You look so happy just sat in it in your back yard!

    Best buy we had from the Lidl ‘man aisle’ (as we called it) was an indoor / outdoor digital thermometer. The sensor we placed under the chassis at the back of the van and we mounted the digital box on one of the bulkheads in the saloon. From memory the lowest reading was -15 in the Alps and highest +42 in Turkey. Cost us €10 and still going strong – bargain!!

    Enjoy your trip planning!

  2. Hey J & Ju, looking good & a bargin at £40, you could probably pick up some life jackets at a car-boot, a dry bag, we also found vital. We have Kayak called ‘Sir Rocco’ It was our most treasured toy last year, we were out in him 3 times in 2 weeks, just up & down a local tidal river. One draw-back to mention, you WILL get a wet bottom, no matter how hard you try to keep dry. The water runs down the oars & drips off into the kayak, we may try the single north American Indian type ‘Paddles’ this year, see if that’s any better. Happy paddling peeps. :-)

    • Good advice Wayne, thanks! Sir Rocco, I like it. We need a name for our kayak. Yeah, something like ‘Poseidon’s Peril’? No? Too fancy? Ah, ‘Dignity’ has already been vetoed by Ju (boo, hiss), ‘Titanic’ is too obvious. Maybe ‘Blow Up Beth’? Nah, connotations, I see your point. Hmmmm, must have a think… :-) Jay

    • Hey Mike. That’s the spirit, sticking up for canine rights! Thing is, Charlie (aka Mogwai, aka Poochalot, aka LittleMan, aka The Beast aka OiStopThat) has a thing about boats. As in, he hates then more than the neighbour’s cat. Last time we took him on a boat, on the Adriatic off Hvar, he made it clear this situation was never to be repeated! Hence there being no room for the Muttski on the new adventure kayak. Charlie says ‘thanks, but no thanks, took me ages to get my fur looking like this, I’m not risking getting wet’. Cheers, J

    • Erm, no, not really. If you want a durable boat, I doubt you’d be happy with this one. We got it for fun, have used it only 3 or 4 times and it’s already ripped (repairable). Cheers, Jay

  3. Hi great review. Any idea if this kayak will work ok on a lake? Been to llangors lake in the Brecon beacons and wished I had taken mine but bottled out with lack of confidence so left it at home. As we do not live too far away I am considering going back soon and taking it with me any advice will be gratefully received. Thanks , Neil

    • Hi Neil

      It’s probably best suited to lakes to be honest. We’re up alongside the Norwegian fjords at the moment and I’m not planning on paddling Bob out into the Arctic Ocean! He’s a lot of fun, but probably best kept to tamer bodies of water. Budget for life jackets too…

      Cheers, Jay

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