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Reviewed by Matt Hudgens

Werner has an excellent line of whitewater paddles for general river running and creeking. With a similar shape, but in three blade sizes (Powerhouse, Sherpa, Trip) there is a paddle to suit most paddlers. We tested the Powerhouse, the largest of the three,
in the surf, and on many rocky California rivers.

Out of the box, a few things are noticed. First, the red blades are welcome, being a nice visible color. As with all Werner paddles, the construction and finish is exceptional. The paddle isn’t the lightest around, but feels well balanced, with a nice
swing to it. It has Werner stepped blade, which puts thicker
fiberglass at the ends of the paddle for strength, while keeping it
thinner elsewhere for weight savings.

On the water, the Powerhouse earns the name. It’s a big blade, with tons of power. Great for getting up to speed quickly, and must make moves, there’s not shortage of grab. You can feel the large blade when bracing or rolling, so it’s a real confidence inspiring
design. That said, this paddle in this size would be inappropriate
for smaller paddlers, or anyone lacking well conditioned arms and
shoulders, but for them there are two smaller sizes available, with
the same shape and awesome Werner construction.

With sturdy construction and proven strength, Werner paddles are a good value, sure to justify their price with years of service. This new series of blade shapes has good power and feel in the water, and will probably be a favorite for many paddlers both new
and experienced, for many years to come.

Tags: creekboating, paddle, powerhouse, river, running, werner

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Replies to This Discussion

It is NOT my favorite paddle. I own a variety of paddles, many Werner ones. I much prefer the feel and balance of the Sidekick to the Powerhouse.

I use the Powerhouse in a 203 cm length with my longer creek-boat (Critical Mass) as well as with my home-built downriver racing boat. The blade is, indeed, very large and powerful but, IMO, it lacks good balance. I have to keep moving my hands during hard paddling trying to find the balanced position and smooth entry. Also, the paddle is rather stiff, even if it is not a foam core blade. Following a good, long workout I definitely feel pain in my elbows from the hard catch at the higher stroke rates.

Not a bad paddle but, not the best.

I own a Powerhouse, 199 cm bent shaft. I think it's a decent paddel, but liked my AT 3 (lost) better. The Werner is a stiff paddle, the blades are thin and can cut you fairly easily if the paddle blade hits you. I did like the feel of the AT bent shaft better, and like the foam core blades, but there are no AT dealers in my area, so for the money, this is the best bang for your buck. I put door edge guard (about $4 from any auto parts store) around the edge of the blade to prevent wear, so far not a nick and no loss of performance. When the edge guard gets beaten up, simply wrap the edge with a new piece.




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