Oru pioneered the origami-style folding kayak way back in 2012, releasing multiple models that use the same folding design to serve different needs since that time. From kayaks that can handle heavy cargo and kayaks for tandem riding to kayaks small enough that you can carry them inside public transportation, they’ve built themselves quite a fleet of recreational paddle boats. Their latest, the Oru Lake, seeks to make their folding kayaks more accessible than ever.
Billed as “the lightest, simplest origami kayak,” the boat, basically, reimagines the outfit’s folding design to its simplest possible implementation. Basically, they took out everything that was unnecessary, drilling it down to its most minimal form, allowing them to end up with a kayak that, truth be told, looks a lot more convenient to own than any of their previous models.
The Oru Lake measures 9 x 2.7 feet (length x width) and weighs just 18 pounds when fully-assembled, making it even smaller and lighter than their previous compact model, the Inlet, which measured 9.7 feet long and weighed 20 pounds. As such, it also collapses in a really compact bundle that measures just 42 x 10 x 18 inches (width x height x thickness), making it look around the same size as a large duffel bag (you know, the kind you can fill with a few million dollars in cash). Even better, the whole thing can assemble in just one to two minutes, so you can hit the lake and get on the water in no time. Suffice to say, this thing is incredibly convenient to store, transport, and use for something that you can ride and paddle across the water.
While previous models of the company’s kayaks used anywhere from four to nine loose parts on top of the folding main body, the Lake only has one loose part. That’s because they integrated everything into the main folding body, including the seat, which helps make the whole thing simpler than ever.
The Oru Lake has a wide-open cockpit with an integrated seat, with enough extra room in there to fit a small cooler, a backpack, or even a small pet. Because of its open design, short length, and lack of bulkheads, this is strictly for flatwater paddling in areas with perfectly calm water. By the way, it’s made from a UV-treated double-walled plastic called OruPlast that, the outfit claims, is a custom-made version of the same plastic used to make those incredibly sturdy postal service bins, ensuring it holds up to rugged use.
Features include a folding clamshell seat made from 18mm thick memory foam, a rigid floorboard to ensure a sturdy cockpit, mini-fairings and skid plates for adequate protection from the bottom, and a payload capacity of 250 pounds. As usual, you can use the outfit’s roster of optional accessories to upgrade the kayak’s capabilities, such as footrests, float bags, and LED light kits. It’s also compatible with Oru’s Journey Pack, a duffel style bag that can serve as a carrying case for the kayak.
A Kickstarter campaign is currently running for the Oru Lake. You can reserve a unit for pledges starting at $499.