Recreational Kayak Buying Guide – Best Recreational Kayak

Which is the best recreational kayak? Well, first you need to know the difference between a recreational kayak and a touring kayak.

Both recreation and touring kayaks are generally similar but recreational kayaks are usually shorter and wider with larger cockpits. This makes the kayak lighter, slower, more stable and more maneuverable. The good news is that the starter versions are also much cheaper than touring kayaks. Choose a recreation kayak for quite short trips on fairly calm water but they are not built for open water, rough water or shooting rapids.

Recreational kayaks are usually 9 to 14 feet long – the longer they are, the faster they go and the better the tracking (ability to go in a straight line).

The best recreation kayak for you will depend on what you want to do and where you want to go. If you want to paddle a long way in a quick time then you need a long one, but for gentle paddling around, especially in narrow streams, then a shorter boat will be best for you.

Depending on your own size and weight, you may want to think of the weight of the boat, particularly if you need to carry it any distance. A kayak with a plastic shell will last for years without much attention but it will be heavier whereas a lighter boat made from fibreglass or similar will be more expensive and somewhat breakable if dragged, dropped or driven into rocks. Alternatively, you can go the much more expensive route and purchase a kayak made of special materials; these boats are extremely light weight as well as being durable. The name of the material will depend on the manufacturer.

This recreational kayak buying guide will help you to decide which is the best recreational kayak for you.

Necky Rip 10 Drop Skeg Kayak

Designed for the beginner, this kayak is still has good quick handling, a fast, smooth glide and is much more fun than the conventional recreational kayak.

Features

  • The hull is made from polyethylene.
  • The dimensions are 10ft 6in x 28.5 in
  • Weight is only 43lb
  • Maximum Load: 300 lb
  • No rudder but there is a skeg
  • 1 year’s manufacturer ‘s warranty

Pros

  • Suitable for all paddling levels
  • Light weight

Cons

  • None reported.

Reviews

  • Good speed and manoeuvrability.
  • Easy for a small person to paddle.
  • Great tracking ability

Conclusion

This kayak, while designed for beginners, seems to suit all levels of ability when needed purely for recreational paddling such as fishing or bird watching.

For pricing details and further reviews visit Necky Rip 10 Drop Skeg Kayak

Hobie Mirage Sport Kayak 2016

This kayak is intended for smaller paddlers or indeed anyone who wants a light weight kayak.

Features

  • The kayak is made from rotomoulded polyethylene.
  • Adjustable padded seat with lumbar support.
  • Two storage hatches.
  • Sail mount for optional sailing kit.
  • Dimensions 9ft 7in x 29.5in
    Weight 48 lbs.
  • Maximum load 225 lbs.
  • Rudder
  • Available colour Caribbean Blue.

Pros

  • Adjustable seat means one size fits all without backache.
  • Can be used as a sailing boat too.
  • Light weight.

Cons

  • None reported.

Reviews

  • None as yet.

Conclusion

The ideal kayak for the smaller person or for someone who will need to carry their kayak for long distances.

For pricing detail visit Hobie Mirage Sport Kayak 2016

Old Town Canoes and Kayaks 10 Vapor Recreational Kayak

This is a sporty boat which was designed to be easy to launch and dock as well as being highly manoeuvrable.

Features

  • The kayak is manufactured from single layer polyethylene.
  • Dimensions 10ft x 28.5 ins.
  • Weight 48 lbs.
  • Maximum load 275 – 325 lbs.
  • Adjustable padded seat.
  • Moulded in paddle rest.
  • Moulded cockpit tray with cup holder
  • Stem day well keeping personal items dry.
  • Available colours are blue and red.

Pros

  • Adjustable seat
  • Paddle rest
  • Cockpit tray and cup holder
  • Day well
  • Large cockpit

Cons

  • Needs a long paddle.

Reviews

  • Big enough to take an 80lb dog along.
  • Stable
  • Easy to get in and out.
  • Extras include drain plug, thigh pads, carrying handles and can holders.
  • Tracks well.

Conclusion

This is a stable, manoeuvrable boat, ideal for lakes and protected waters and very spacious.

For more reviews and pricing details, visit Old Town Canoes and Kayaks 10 Vapor Recreational Kayak

Perception Sport Swiftwater 12.0 Kayak (Red/Yellow)

Although this recreational kayak is ideal for still waters it performs well and has good stability in rougher water.

Features

  • Hull manufactured from high density polyethylene.
  • Dimensions 12ft by 25.75 ins
  • Maximum load 295 lbs.
  • Stern dry hatch.
  • Knee, thigh pad, keepers foot brace system.
  • Carrying handles.
  • Colour is red and yellow.

Pros

  • Roomy cockpit
  • Hatch to keep your gear dry
  • Stable

Cons

  • None reported

Reviews

  • Easy to manoeuvre.
  • Tracks well.
  • Stable in 1.5ft waves.
  • Good value for money.
  • Colour not as advertised

Conclusion

This recreational kayak is versatile enough to be used in still or quite rough waters and is light weight and easy to carry.

For pricing details and further reviews visit Perception Sport Swiftwater 12.0 Kayak (Red/Yellow)

Be sure to listen to the video below for important tips for the novice or beginner kayaker before making your final decision on which kayak to purchase.


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