Oru Kayak was already known for its convenience: as the most popular folding kayak on the market, it's an easy and streamlined addition to the adventurous type's gear repertoire, one that fits in most vehicles and homes without hassle.
This week, Oru took it one step further, and released what is sure to be another popular option: the Lake, which the brand is asserting is the lightest kayak on the market. It's 10 percent lighter than the Inlet, and the lightest non-inflatable kayak in the world.
So, how did Oru trim weight while maintaining fun (and performance)? To maintain the minuscule 18 pounds the Lake weighs, the brand trimmed away unnecessary components, leaving only two loose parts: the seat, which is made from 18mm memory foam and built into the custom folded floorboard, and the foldable shell. The new floorboard design acts as a replacement for bulkheads by providing the rigidity the vessel needs, while strategically-placed folds replace the need for traditional bow and stern closures.
The Lake is Oru's shortest kayak, at nine feet long, and folds up to a shape measuring is 42” X 10” X 18”, similar to the Inlet. But there's one big difference — the folding paddle now fits into the package, eliminating any loose parts.
Like Oru's past models, the need for speed is highlighted in the Lake. The new kayak is guaranteed to set up in under two minutes, albeit with a little practice to get the folds down.
When reflecting on the boat, Oru Kayak's founder and chief design officer, Anton Willis said, "The defining principle of this boat is simplicity- both in terms of customer experience and accessibility and design ethos. We make origami kayaks, and this boat is the essence of that — it's the most purely 'origami' thing we've ever made."
If you'd like to try out the Lake yourself (and at a discount), you can find it for $450 on Kickstarter right now. Keeping in line with its roots, the brand is releasing the Lake on the crowd funding platform for a limited time, before making it widely available for $699.