UPDATE: Since I wrote this post, I have been paddling the Valley Etain pretty intensively for close to 6 weeks now for an Ocean Paddler Magazine review. The review will be out in the next issue.

There is a lot of talk within the paddling community about how it compares to the P&H Cetus. As regular readers know I currently paddle a Cetus so thought I would share some comparison photos I took last week. Click any of the images to view and enlarged version.

Deck Comparison
Side Comparison
Hull Comparison

Original Post

Early Test Version of Valley Etain

Early Test Version of Valley Etain

Valley Sea Kayaks are moving ever closer to the release of their new Expedition Sea Kayak, the Valley Etain. Valley’s blog recently posted up news that the first production models are rolling out of the workshops with demo models and the first batch of sales stock on route to stockists.

The Valley Etain is a slight break in tradition for Valley Sea Kayaks who traditional produce sea kayaks with a slight Fish Form (widest point just in front of the midpoint). The new Etain is Swede Form (widest point to the rear of the midpoint). Valley describe their design brief as being to:

Produce a contemporary sea kayak suitable for expedition style paddling whilst still fun and nimble enough for day and weekend work. The benchmark boats being – our own Aquanaut & Nordkapp’s, NDK’s Explorer, P&H’s Cetus and Quest models, Tide Race’s Explore and Rockpool’s GT.

Peter Orton of Valley, has also made the following observations:

As I mentioned previously this is not entirely about making a better Valley boat, although we certainly hope it will be one of our best, primarily it is about making a new boat for those that aren’t currently drawn to what we offer.

The hull has shallow to moderate ‘V’ in cross-section for good initial stability, and rocker which Valley describe as:

…moderate i.e. slightly less than some other Valley boats to provide secure tracking but still enough to provide a lively ride.

Valley Etain Cockpit

Valley Etain Cockpit

Specfications are stated as:
Length: 17’6” (534cm)
Width: 21.5” (55cm)
Depth: 13.25” (34cm)
Weight: 51lbs (23.5kg)

Of interest, is a new take on the deck hatch, with Valley creating a removable ‘deck-pod’ (as shown in some images below).

This certainly looks like an interesting boat and as a P&H Cetus owner which features some similarities in design/features I’m interested to see how this Kayak compares.

Valley Etain Foredeck

Valley Etain Foredeck

Valley Etain Pod System

Valley Etain Pod System

Valley Etain Removed Pod

Valley Etain Removed Pod