What is the best kayak for a beginner?

Discussion in 'Paddling' started by stmpdog, Feb 16, 2017.

  1. stmpdog

    stmpdog Tracker

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    Greetings, I'm planning on purchasing a kayak this spring. I am newbie when it's comes to kayaks, so not really sure what to look for or even stay away from. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    The plan is to use it in the rivers around my area, and also lake Erie (the bay only). There are some really good sites to bushcraft at. So space for gear is important. I was looking at one from bass pro
    Ascend D10 Sit-In Kayak - Red | Bass Pro Shops: The Best Hunting, Fishing, Camping & Outdoor Gear
    Looks like it has enough space for gear, and sense I'm a double amputee, I can use the space for legs as extra gear space if needed. Thoughts, and comments welcome.
     
  2. Finner

    Finner Tracker

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    I'm thinking a standard recreational/touring boat would fit the bill. Perfect for slow moving rivers and bays, large opening for ease of getting in and out, and generally very stable for a beginning paddler.
     
  3. stmpdog

    stmpdog Tracker

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    Thank you I will definitely look into that.
     
  4. manitoulinbound

    manitoulinbound Apple Fritter Lover Supporter

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    I personally started out with a 9' Kayaki sit on top and am glad I did. Yes, it has it's limitations on open water such as tracking due to it's short length but they are stable, meaning almost impossible to flip, I mean you really have to work to flip them. I ended up buying 2 for the cottage. There is no storage but there is a nice high back seat. Basically, it's a learn how to paddle or take it to the beach or river type boat.
     
  5. stmpdog

    stmpdog Tracker

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    Thank you. Not sure how I feel about a sit on top. Will have to give that some thought.
     
  6. FreeMe

    FreeMe Guide

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    Unless you have space limitations that prohibit it, I would advise to go with a little more length. Ideally, 12 feet or more. A 12' recreational kayak will track better and move easier, but still be pretty easy to turn. We have, in our fleet, one 11' 1" kayak, and it is a bare minimum for my 165lb frame. Putting any camping gear in it with me would make handling suffer. That boat is for my daughter. My wife ( 130 lbs) paddles a 12 footer, and it works well for her. If I was to have one for myself (I'm more into canoes) it would be a 14' or 15' kayak.
     
  7. RiotYakFishin

    RiotYakFishin Scout

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    My first kayak was the Riot Enduro 12 Angler. Great first kayak for someone like myself that never paddled one before. It's a sit-in fishing kayak that's extremely stable, retractable skeg, 2 dry hatches and more.. Last summer I upgraded to a Dagger Stratos 14.5L and while looking at the Dagger line-up of kayaks I noticed the Dagger Axis 12. If I would have come across the Axis 12 five years ago when I was looking to make my first purchase I definitely would have picked one up and just added the rod holder for my fishing needs.
    Lots of options out there for kayaks. Search for the 2017 Rapid Media Buyers Guide just came out a couple weeks ago. It's free and lots of boats to look at.

    Shopping for a new boat is half the fun so enjoy.
     
  8. teb_atoz

    teb_atoz Guide Bushclass I

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    It depends. If you want something for putting around on lakes and ponds then a sit-on-top is good. If you want it for touring then get a touring kayak, 15 to 18 feet closed cockpit. running river is totally different then take lessons.
    One thing you can do with spring coming many kayak rental places have a free try a kayak day. You can get an idea of what is out there.

    First what do you want to do?

    cheers
     
  9. snapper

    snapper Scout

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    This may sound counterproductive at first but I'd get the kayak that will meet your most advanced needs and/or desires. Although it will be like learning to ride a bike without training wheels, most people quickly adapt to the boat's tendencies and capabilities. You might get wet a bit in the beginning but you'll be a better paddler in the end. You'll also have a kayak that can handle a wider variety of wind & water conditions so future trips will be more comfortable should the weather turn on you while you're out. Just my suggestion. YMMV...

    That's all for now. Take care and until next time...be well.

    snapper
     
  10. hlydon

    hlydon Scout

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    I agree that you should buy something a little more advanced than what you think you need. I assumed I would buy an entry-level sit inside kayak until I researched the heck out of kayaks. I wanted a kayak primarily for fishing lakes and possibly lazy rivers. I bought a Wilderness Outfitters Tarpon 100. It is a 10' sit on top kayak. I couldn't be happier. It has plenty of room and storage space. It balances fairly well. I don't feel like I am going to tip. It has fairly good speed and maneuverability. A sit on top kayak sounds like it would be easier to get in and out of.
     
  11. KFF

    KFF Tracker

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    I'd say that go to the dealer/club and see if there is a possibility to try out different models. See what works for your needs.
    I'm still on my first one, going on eighth years now. It's a SOT by Wilderness systems, Tarpon 120. I have tried tipping it with no luck and I hear they do even better more stable ones like the Ride.
    Mine is used for fishing mainly, but it fits all my fishing gear and a weeks camping stuff easy.
     
  12. Bobsdock

    Bobsdock Tracker

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    My first boat was a perception dancer. Would not recommend it fora beginner.Dagger makes some nice entry level boats the Dagger zydecos are wide with twin reverse keels they track well and are easy to paddle with very roomy comfortable cock pits they have a 9 foot and 11 foot models. I'm currently floating a Jackson rouge 10. Lots of room for gear. Did one 5 day trip in it and a number of overnighters.
     

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