Last year, Oru introduced their biggest folding boat: a tandem kayak named Haven. Needless to say, it was impressive. This time around, they’re going the opposite direction, turning out their smallest boat yet in the form of the Oru Inlet.
Like their other creations, it’s an “origami kayak” that can fold into a bag-like form factor, allowing you to carry it by hand, strap it over your shoulder, and do a whole load of other things you wouldn’t be able to do with a regular kayak. Unlike them, this thing is so small, it’s convenient enough to take inside trains, buses, and other public transportation, allowing you to bring a functional kayak without needing to transport it by car.
Billed as “the most portable origami kayak ever,” the Oru Inlet measures 42 x 19 x 10 inches (width x height x depth) when collapsed, making it comparable in size to a guitar case, greatly aiding its portability. It’s so compact, in fact, you can fit multiple kayaks in the trunk of a single car, allowing you to bring one kayak for each member of the family, so you can all go in the water together. Tipping the scales at just 20 pounds, it’s quite light, too, allowing you to carry it through a bit of distance without having it weigh you down.
When assembled into a kayak, the watercraft measures 10 x 1.7 feet (length x width), making it compact enough to maneuver along narrow waterways. It assembles in less than five minutes, too, allowing you to take it to the shore and get it ready for the water in a very short time. In the water, the outfit claims it performs in a solid, stable, and lively manner, although it’s for use in flat water, so don’t even think about bringing this to the ocean, unless you want to end up swimming back to shore.
The Oru Inlet is an open cockpit kayak, allowing for easy entry and exit, while a wider cockpit profile provides added stability and greater freedom of movement while padding. It sports a built-in seat, an integrated floorboard, an adjustable backrest, and an adjustable footrest, so it’s easy to get comfortable in the cockpit, with enough room to keep you comfy, along with a generous supply of gear (or a big pet, if your dog likes the water, too). To ensure capable in-water performance, the bow and stern bulkheads have been reinforced for rigidity, while the integrated plastic fairings have been improved to ensure no tearing.
According to Oru, the kayak can accommodate paddlers up to 6’2’’, with a maximum weight of 275 pounds, so it should be suitable for most individuals. Each one comes with carrying case with backpack straps and a padded waist belt, so you can carry it on your back like a regular rucksack, while pockets on the exterior of the case can fit paddles and other small items.
A Kickstarter campaign is currently running for the Oru Inlet. You can reserve a unit for pledges starting at $749.