The Black Bart paddle is a bent shaft graphite paddle. The blade is 8 1/2" wide. It weighs 11 ounces. It is to die for! I tried one at a canoe show, loved it, and bought a second one as a spare for Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness trips. If this paddle has a down side I haven't found it yet, with the possible exception of the price ($200). On the other hand, good laminated wood bent shaft paddles are pushing $100 today so it's not TOO high!
Update: 7-22-99. Though the paddles are sold through We-No-Nah dealers they are manufactured by: Black Bart Paddle Co. and when one of my paddles broke and this company was very courteous about repair (under warranty). I'm still a fan.