Werner Camano Review
Cons: Expensive, blades prone to wear if not treated well, locking mechanism can get sticky
Manufacturer: Werner Paddles
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Our Analysis and Test Results
Werner has a history of making well designed high-quality kayak paddles, and the Camano lives up to their prestigious family name. This paddle was a high performer in most tested metrics.
The Camano placed just behind the top performers in this category. The fiberglass laminate blades are responsive, delivering no noticeable flutter when put under duress. This can be attributed to the rigidity of the materials, as well as the dihedral blade design, delivering Werner's signature high-quality paddle experience.
Ease of Adjustment
It is no surprise that it tied for ease of adjustment with the Skagit and Kalliste, which uses the same Werner Smart View adjustable system. The Smart-view portal makes it easy to identify and select the correct blade angle to suit your kayaking needs. This system does benefit from basic maintenance or the help of a second pair of hands.
Locking Mechanism Security
The Camano's Smart view adjustment made the paddle feel secure, with little play in the shaft. In this metric, the Camano significantly outperformed all the paddles using the snap button system. However, it did not feel as bombproof as some of the other mechanisms available from Aqua-Bound and Wildnerness System.
The Camano is one of the lighter paddles tested in this review. Novices and experts noticed this weight difference and were especially grateful for the lighter paddle when heading out for longer distances.
The Smart View adjustable system will require a bit of care and attention if a paddler wants it to work effectively over time. A regular rinse should be sufficient, as the primary concern is the build of grit and sand in the locking mechanism.
The fiberglass laminate also is prone to damage if the paddle is not stored or transported well. For example, if you were to throw it in the back of a truck under a kayak, you may notice the blade wearing down from the friction created as it repeatedly slides around. This paddle would benefit from a user that took care of their gear.
The cost of the Werner Camano is significantly higher than the others tested for this review, but also half the price of some of the other costly options on the market. There are cheaper paddles that scored higher overall in the tested metrics. However, this paddle outperformed most of the cheaper models in terms of performance. Long-distance paddlers will be especially grateful for the reduced weight, and after miles of kayaking, your arm muscles will be glad you invested in the extra cost.
Overall, this is a high performing and enjoyable paddle to use. Scoring within the top three positions across all testing metrics. The Smart-View adjustable system required a bit of extra care and attention. However, it provided a simple to use and reliable adjustment point.
Those that are considering this paddle but would be willing to compromise weight for durability and cost may want to consider the Skagit FG, another paddle from the Werner family that utilizes the same blade design and high-quality shaft. The additional weight comes from the polypropylene blades that are heavier but more durable.
— Sara James