I will be test driving some sea kayaks in the near future, and I've a few questions. With the help of a lot of folks in a different thread, I've narrowed my list of candidates from three to six, so demos will be really helpful in making a final selection.
1. Apart from 'feel' what empirical data points should I be using for comparison purposes? (Feel is probably enough for me, but if I don't have all the boats at the same time, I don't think I'm articulate enough to compare based on feel).
2. I've read Tom Watson's "On-Water Demo Days" but I'm concerned that a kayak's behavior in a small pond does not correlate to behavior in large waves, following seas, high winds, etc. How can I use a relatively static environment to estimate strengths and weaknesses in more dynamic surf zone or open water?
3. Is there a sensible alternative to just renting as many boats as I can find and heading offshore, one at a time?
I can, of course, muddle through this, but any suggestions will be appreciated.