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Looking at Kayaks

Skimaine

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I would avoid Tandems. They generally track poorly in the least amount of wind. As others have noted, singles give more flexibility. .
 

dlague

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I would avoid Tandems. They generally track poorly in the least amount of wind. As others have noted, singles give more flexibility. .

Ya others have noted that. We have rented a tandem on other occasions but we were in a bay on a calm day.
 

Cannonball

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I absolutely love my Heritage Featherlite. It may not be what you are looking for because it's not great for surf. But it's the most stable and rugged kayak I've had. So easy to get in and out of, even in challenging situations (steep banks, boat-to-boat, etc)

Just in from a nice river paddle...
 

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yeggous

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I just started looking at recreational kayaks myself. I am surprised at how difficult it is to find any on sale. I though Sierra Trading Post would be a good bet, but it seems like all their discount codes exclude kayaks.

What is the secret to finding a good deal?

I'm thinking that a 12 ft sit-in recreational kayak is the way to go. I actually really like the 14 ft Wilderness Tsunami but don't want to pay the premium if I'm not going into open water.

Can anyone speak to the advantages of a 10 ft vs 12 ft kayak for recreational flat water? I'd call myself advanced beginner. Up to this point I've spent about 6 days per year on the water, but am looking to get out more often near home to kill time.

What am I missing about the Pelican Summit 120X? The price seems entirely too reasonable for a boat of the size.
http://www.westmarine.com/rotomold-kayaks/pelican-international--12-summit-120x-kayak--15106909

I'm looking for a recreational kayak for lake and rivers near home in southern New England. I'm assuming that any recreational kayak is workable to take fishing on occasion. I'll probably just rent when I'm in North Conway because I know of places to get a shuttled rental deal at a price that makes it not worth it to lug a boat.
 

dlague

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I just started looking at recreational kayaks myself. I am surprised at how difficult it is to find any on sale. I though Sierra Trading Post would be a good bet, but it seems like all their discount codes exclude kayaks.

What is the secret to finding a good deal?

I'm thinking that a 12 ft sit-in recreational kayak is the way to go. I actually really like the 14 ft Wilderness Tsunami but don't want to pay the premium if I'm not going into open water.

Can anyone speak to the advantages of a 10 ft vs 12 ft kayak for recreational flat water? I'd call myself advanced beginner. Up to this point I've spent about 6 days per year on the water, but am looking to get out more often near home to kill time.

What am I missing about the Pelican Summit 120X? The price seems entirely too reasonable for a boat of the size.
http://www.westmarine.com/rotomold-kayaks/pelican-international--12-summit-120x-kayak--15106909

I'm looking for a recreational kayak for lake and rivers near home in southern New England. I'm assuming that any recreational kayak is workable to take fishing on occasion. I'll probably just rent when I'm in North Conway because I know of places to get a shuttled rental deal at a price that makes it not worth it to lug a boat.

What am I missing about the Pelican Summit 120X? This kayak is made with two molded pieces that are then glued together. I was told that after a few years being exposed to the elements they tend to come apart.

Can anyone speak to the advantages of a 10 ft vs 12 ft kayak for recreational flat water? The shorter the kayak the more it tends to weave on each paddle stroke, where as, the longer kayak will track better and will be faster. Once you get into 12 ft kayaks you can also get into rudder attachments that help with tracking. In fact the Wilderness model you mention above, comes with one that is foot controlled.

If you plan on kayaking narrow channels or smaller rivers, then getting too long of a kayak can be detrimental. However, for longer day trips the longer kayaks are beneficial. Shorter kayaks are better suited for shorter tips, surf, and narrow channels or smaller rivers.
 

Nick

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My old boss at my last employer used to fish a lot from his kayak.

I've only done it twice. once on a sit-in and once on a SOT. I don'tr eally remember one being preferable to the other, at least for just boring putzing around.

I'd like one too but I'm running out of storage space at the house with all this kids stuff. Plus, I just don't have time to take on yet another hobby!!
 

Cannonball

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Can anyone speak to the advantages of a 10 ft vs 12 ft kayak for recreational flat water? I

About 6-10 lbs.

Plus everything dlague said above.

I tend to paddle tight, overgrown, narrow rivers here in SE Mass. Entry points are often headwalls, steep embankments, sketchy ramps, marshes, etc. Solo portages in heavy brush aren't uncommon. And I get in and out a lot. For any/all of those scenarios a lighter, shorter, more durable boat makes a huge difference. If you are planning to paddle lakes and open rivers where you can drive close to the water's edge, I would recommend going with the longer boat. It will track better and be more comfortable.
 

dlague

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I absolutely love my Heritage Featherlite. It may not be what you are looking for because it's not great for surf. But it's the most stable and rugged kayak I've had. So easy to get in and out of, even in challenging situations (steep banks, boat-to-boat, etc)

Just in from a nice river paddle...

That was a cool pic!
 

yeggous

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LL Bean outlet has 20% off of already the already 15% discounted prices. Unfortunately 80% of what the have in stock are women's Calypso kayaks.


Sent from my iPhone using AlpineZone mobile app
 

amf

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The Heritage boat was the mainstay of the fleet when I was leading rec kayak tours. They took a LOT of abuse over the years. They had a stern bulkhead compartment and bow flotation pillar, something many entry level rec boats lack. Stable and tracked well, but keep in mind that there are always folks who complain about a boat's tracking - with these, it was usually due to operator error!
 

bigbog

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Think any additional length might possibly offer a little more stability(initial and stability when leaned more) as well as potential straight ahead efficiency...but realize, as mentioned in previous responses, that the less expensive recreational boats' hull designs aren't made with much help in stability. High % of troubles with straight ahead travel is often from a lack of operator skill...Duh, nothing new said...but $.01,
 
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mlctvt

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I noticed that your original post included “light coastal paddling” If this is still the case you shouldn’t be looking at anything under 14 feet. Most short recreational kayaks lack the ability to get back into them if you go over, their cockpits are submerged when filled. If you are out in a bay with even small waves you will most likely have to swim your boat to shore to empty it and get back in. This can become very dangerous. Sea or touring kayaks have enough flotation that the cockpit will still be above the waterline when filled with water so you can either bail it out or flip it over emptying the water then flip it back upright and climb back in.

Another thing to consider is initial vs secondary stability. Wide short boats have great initial stability but awful second stability when underway. I have many friends who mistakenly bought a wide kayak because it was less tippy to get into but the boats are extremely slow and not stable when underway. A few had to sell their boats and get a narrower and longer kayak.

If you are going to go out into salt water I’d recommend taking a beginning kayak course at a place like the Kayak Centre in Wickford RI.
If you’re just going to be messing around small inland ponds and small lakes then the short recreational boat may be fine. Just don’t try to bring it out in the ocean.

The forums at www.paddling.net have great information
 
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dlague

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I noticed that your original post included “light coastal paddling” If this is still the case you shouldn’t be looking at anything under 14 feet. Most short recreational kayaks lack the ability to get back into them if you go over, their cockpits are submerged when filled. If you are out in a bay with even small waves you will most likely have to swim your boat to shore to empty it and get back in. This can become very dangerous. Sea or touring kayaks have enough flotation that the cockpit will still be above the waterline when filled with water so you can either bail it out or flip it over emptying the water then flip it back upright and climb back in.

Another thing to consider is initial vs secondary stability. Wide short boats have great initial stability but awful second stability when underway. I have many friends who mistakenly bought a wide kayak because it was less tippy to get into but the boats are extremely slow and not stable when underway. A few had to sell their boats and get a narrower and longer kayak.

If you are going to go out into salt water I’d recommend taking a beginning kayak course at a place like the Kayak Centre in Wickford RI.
If you’re just going to be messing around small inland ponds and small lakes then the short recreational boat may be fine. Just don’t try to bring it out in the ocean.

The forums at www.paddling.net have great information

I would not take a SI Kayak out into the ocean. I would prefer a SOT which is what we are now looking at. The surf off Rye, NH coast is not that far out.
 

mlctvt

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They are using a hybrid kayak that does not have the traditional cockpit. In fact it is a cross between and kayak, and a canoe!

Only the guy with the camera, he was trying out a new model surf-ski , All of the others are in traditional sit in sea kayaks, scroll to the end to see some other kayaks

All of these guys are incredible rollers though, I wouldn't try this much surf until I was a expert roller
 

crank

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I have a small featherlight which is great for poking around is small rivers and I use all the time in harbors where I anchor or moor my boat. However, the small boat requires more paddling to keep up with a longer kayak so is not great for long trips. I rent SOT kayaks for playing in the surf and it is a lot of fun, but I prefer a sit in for excursions, I have been out in some pretty good chop in mine and was OK but it was a bit scary and it was a shortish paddle.


Also, I got mine off of Craigslist and I save a few hundred bucks on it vs. buying one new. If I was a serious kayaker I would get a longer fiberglass boat with a skirt.
 
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bigbog

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.......All of these guys are incredible rollers.....
+1
With well-seasoned balance and a lot of paddling time well spent....same as the freshwater VT guys(shown earlier)...
The video is good paddling with SI kayaks, but really there's nothing great in their paddling. Tons of really good touring-boat(ie non-WW) kayakers(normal SI) do the coastal scene just off CT, Mass, NH, and Maine.
There is where anyone looking to get into paddling the surfzone should take lessons or trips or something that's offered from the coastal kayaking companies, all with excellent paddlers in the know as to how to see errors and teach, much the same as a ski instructor.
 
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yeggous

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I ended up buying his and her kayaks from LL Bean. They were already discounted at the outlet stores, plus they have an additional 20% sale on boats, plus you can save another 15% if you sell your soul and get their credit card. I'm never taken a store credit card like this, but did it to save about $200.

I ended up getting:
12' Manatee (inc. paddle and cockpit cover)
10' Manatee Angler (inc. paddle, anchor, cockpit cover)
NRS boating gloves
Two paddling PFD's

Grand total out the door: $843.17

The real adventure started on the way home when one of the kayaks flew off the roof. FML. Since I bought from LL Bean and they guarantee everything, they are shipping me a new kayak for free. Moral of the story: always buy from LL Bean. They have just earned themselves a loyal customer.
 

dlague

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The real adventure started on the way home when one of the kayaks flew off the roof.

Always wondered about that? I have seen some really shaky setups on top of cars and trucks. We almost lost 2 surf boards last summer because I trusted my kids! Imagine being a car behind that situation - mayhem!
 
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