The first and central boat in this series, the Asylum was developed to provide maximum performance in a short, comfortable package for paddlers with a 28-32″ inseam. Designed with smooth screws, mysteries and “loops” (underwater barrel rolls) in mind, the Asylum is about as well-balanced a package as you can get for pure squirt performance. Though it won’t flatspin on green waves, it surfs in typically dynamic squirt fashion and performs blasting transitions (or “blastwheels”) in holes with ease. The boat can be cut extremely low and still provide a high degree of comfort thanks to the large footbumps and raised knee pockets that are a hallmark of the Asylum series. Mystery moves are easy in this boat ~it’s Jim’s first foray into short sinkers. It is very tweakable in the realm although some would say it doesn’t have the reach of longer pointier boats. But it spins faster and easier than long boats- more like an obedient acrobatic wing. The Asylum is an exceptional boat for competition – the combination of rocker, soft chines, short length and sinkability make it totally ‘bossable’. Asylum paddlers took gold at the US National Championships (Men’s Squirt), and both the Gold and Bronze medals at the 2002 PreWorld Freestyle Championships (Men’s Squirt).
Tall boy? Look for the Sneaker!
About Jim Snyder
Jim is a world famous kayak designer and paddle maker. He’s been doing both for decades and is credited with helping the sport evolve into the cubic state it is in today. He was one of the pioneers of squirtboating and was the first person to cartwheel a kayak on flatwater in 1981. Jim began his whitewater career as a raft guide and lives like a squire in northern West Virginia. He was inducted into the International Whitewater Hall of Fame years ago but claims he only needs rocks and water to keep himself happy.
In 1980/81, Jim designed his first kayak- the Slice. It was the first commercially produced short boat in the country. The next year Jess Whittemore kicked off the sport of Squirt Boating by discovering many new exciting moves in his long pointy squirt boats~ fun things like Blasting and Splats. Jim detoured into trying to design a cartwheel-able boat and went off to design his own shorter squirt designs. In 1983 Phoenix Kayaks started making Jim’s Arc design and an early prototype of that design (the “Baby Arc”) was the boat he did the first flatwater cartwheels in- fetching 12 ends right off the bat in January of ’83. New Wave Kayaks started making his designs in 1985 and they were the major factor in popularizing the sport of squirt boating. Today Jim’s designs are produced by Murky Water and PS Composites.
Visit Jim’s Website