What should i know when buying a Kayak?

Needs some help in purchasing my 1st kayak… New or 2nd hand, it would be used for three season easy lake waters, possible river use when i get some experience, and maybe some room for small fishing gear too I’m about 6’2 and 240 lbs..What would you recommend is easy to carry and use for a first time investment..

5 thoughts on “What should i know when buying a Kayak?

  1. c_kayak_fun Post author

    For your size and use the kayaking forums I participate in usually recommend the Wilderness Systems Pungo:


    Though around $900 new you can often find them used. It’s heavy, however. That’s going to be true for any plastic kayak that would fit a guy your size. If you can afford a little more money you can get something lighter and more versatile in a folding kayak like the Pakboat XT-15. I just got one for my boyfriend and it only weighs 39 pounds, is very fast, stable and spacious and actually comes apart (aircraft aluminum frame and nylon/PVC fabric hull) and can fit in a duffel bag for travel and storage — it sets up in less than 30 minutes. I’ve used folding kayaks for many years and they are tough, light and easy to paddle.


    If you prefer a solid boat, there are dozens of models that would work for you. Boats made of wood are actually lighter than plastic ones — you can often buy used ones that people have built from kits at a good price. Look at the Pygmy Kayak and Carolina Light Craft sites for examples of these. The paddlers forum site http://www.paddling.net has excellent model comparisons and user reviews and recommendations, also a classified ad site with boats for sale that you can search by geographic area. You can search the “paddlers place” discussion forums for tips on kayak models for your size and use as well.

  2. MonsterJack Post author

    The biggest issue you will have is finding a kayak that you are comfortable in. Most entry level kayaks that are less expensive tend to be smaller, not allowing enough room for your long legs.

    Personally I would recommend the Current Designs Kestrel 140 with Open Cockpit for you. The open cockpit design will make it very easy for you to get your long legs in and out of. The Kestrel 140 is a great boat for both lakes and rivers. It has a more rounded bottom making it easy to maneuver (especially on rivers… which is very important), it is still extremely stable, and quick through the water.

    The Wilderness Systems Pungo 140 would be another nice option, however it has a more pronounced keel on the bottom… this makes it track really straight on lakes however this kayak is extremely difficult to maneuver on rivers.

    Plus both of these kayaks will have room for a small tackle box and and fishing rod.

  3. Aquaplay Scotland Post author

    Hello T, cant argue with the advice given so far but suggest you also have a look at the Tomcat inflatable kayak made by Aire. We use them for sea, lake and river use, are hard wearing, very adaptable and easy transported.

    An alternative would be the inflatable Sea Eagle, a bit lighter but I have no personal experience of this kayak.

    Good luck with your quest and enjoy whatever boat you get.

  4. galt_57 Post author

    I think you’ve gotten some pretty good answers. I would suggest that you try to find a local kayaking club. You can look at americancanoe.org for a list of clubs in your state. That way you can talk to local paddlers and hear their opinions and see what they are paddling.

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