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kayak for 5'-6" 112# person

I'm looking for a kayak for exploring rivers and small lakes, and longer trips. I'm 5'-6", 112 pounds. Kayak weight 40 lbs or less would be great. Looking for something that tracks much better than my creek boat.
Thank you for any help.


  • Look around for
    -- Last Updated: Nov-13-13 2:15 PM EST --

    A Perception Tribute 12 in thermoformed plastic "air lite". It's a recently discontinued model but there might be a shop with one.

    Pricier option is Current Designs Vision 120sp 32lbs

  • Options
    Delta 12S
    Check out the Delta 12S. 12' x 24" 38# for smaller framed paddlers. Fore and aft hatches, front day hatch, full deck rigging, thermoform construction. I own one and love it!
  • Kevlar Perception Shadow 16.5 - 46 lbs

    Disclaimer: This is my boat and is a bit snug for me and my mukluks - I'm 5'6" and 160 lbs.

    It's plenty maneuverable, yet very easily kept on track.

    It's a lovely kayak for smallish paddlers.

    Good luck in your search.
  • Pygmy Selkie
    or Murrelet - Take a look at these if you have workspace available. I've built two Pygmies (not either of these)and they are fairly easy to build & don't take much in the way of wood working skills. They are also not fragile - I can attest that they can take use .. and if you built it you can repair it when you do bang it up.
  • Small
    WS Tsunami SP might work for your weight.
  • SP
    The SP would make a decent day boat at 112lbs but that doesn't leave much room for gear. I've had a 130lb paddler in one of ours and it was riding a little low. Very comfortable (I'm told) but the knee braces aren't workable so you're sitting open in an over sized cockpit. A similar boat to the SP that has been catching my eye is the Tahe Lifestyle Solo PE. Triple layer and a decent looking cockpit. I'm hoping to see one this spring. I wish they made it 19.5-20" wide and 14' long though.

    Here is a listing for one with suggested paddler weights.

    If posting a link like that is not allowed let me know and I'll remove it.
  • Agree
    Murrelet is big for her but Selkie would be great. For the cost of a new composite boat this would be worth it.

    Eric Schades Merganser 16 is nice but heavier.
  • Impex Mystic...plastic or glass
    work well. These weigh in at 44-46 lbs, Kevlar at 40 lbs.
  • If you're looking for
    A fast, light weight, stable and gorgeous sea kayak--take a look at a Novus Composites 15'-8" at nckayaks.com.
  • Thank You
    Thank You. I'm so glad I thought to ask here. Great help. I put your suggestions and ones I had found into Excel so I can compare the numbers at least. Highlighted + and - features for each one (compared to the one I have). Now I have a much better idea of what I'm looking for, and a good list to take to the dealer.
    These are the brands he carries: Current Designs, Dagger, Heritage, Hurricane, Liquid Logic, Necky Kayaks, Ocean Kayak, Old Town, Perception, Wilderness Systems
    and I found others that you mention which can be shipped, but not a place to try them out, yet.

    I had totally forgotten about Pygmy Boats, so thanks for reminding me. I'm a builder and would love to build that Selkie.
    I haven't found Delta anywhere near me, but the 12S is coming to the top of my wish list--narrower cockpit, >40 lbs, plenty of storage, and I like that hull shape.

    In another discussion, it was mentioned not to even consider a kayak under 14 feet. Do they track that much better than a 12-foot? Vision 120 (32 lbs) vs Vision 140 (43 lbs). Is the extra weight worth the 2 extra feet in length on long trips?

    Thank you again.
  • Mystic is a great boat
    I had a 36-pounder in kevlar. Rolls like a dream. Just don't drop it off the top of a car.
    G in NC
  • Thank You
    It's an Impex Mystic 14!
    Thank You for all your help.
  • Find a used Picolo
    From Wilderness Systems. Had my niece from Germany in one and is the same size as you.

    Look at these photo's and a couple of video's. This was her first time out in a kayak!


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