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I am a larger than usual paddler, 6'3" 290# size 15 shoe. I am looking for a touring/ expedition kayak with a large cockpit. I previously had an Impex Assateague, which caused my legs and feet to go dumb. It obviously had to go. I am now ready to purchase another boat. I sat in a Prijon Kodiak and fit well, but that was 2 years ago, and apparently the boat has become very scarce. I heard Wilderness Systems Tsunami 175 is big. I'm trying to get ideas before heading to CanoeCopia at Rutabaga next month. Any ideas or any fellow large paddlers have suggestions? PLEASE HELP!


  • Seriously
    Have you considered trying to lose some weight? I don't mean this to be a smart a$$ reply, but at 6'-3" you are too short for your weight.

    With that said, you might want to take a look at the Current Designs Isle. They also have the high volume Solstice.
  • He can lose all the weight in the world.
    With size 15 feet, there isn't anything I've found that one could call comfortable. You hobbits have no idea how good you've got it !
  • Assateague upgrade
    For the linebacker build I've fount the Valley Etain 17-7 works extremely well. I'll have to put on some big boots today to see how size 15 shoes might fit it. I'll let you know.

    Another option would be to look for a discontinued Eddyline Nighthawk 17. Very big guys kayak.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • At
    canoecopia, I would talk to some manufacturers reps. You can't be the only big man in the world with the same problem. It's a big show with most the major manufacturers. (yes I'm going to the show too) There, you can get a chance to sit in a bunch of boats & see what's the most comfortable for your size-especially your size 15 feet.
  • Current Designs Solstice GT Titan
    I think you can't go wrong with the Solstice GT Titan. I tested one and found it too big for me. I am 6'4", 230 lbs., size 13 feet. It felt like I was sitting inside the Alaska pipeline.
  • Can't help with the weight
    But I'm 6'4 with 15s and there are indeed very few boats in which you can fit your feet comfortably. If you were under 6ft with 15s would be easy, but added leg length and big feet don't mix well Asa kayaks get narrower and lower for longer legs instead of doing the opposite as it would make sense ergonomically...

    Measure with your desired footwear, but what I'm getting at is that you might need to forego sturdy shoes while in the kayak, except for very few - and these I unfortunately do not know since I'm much lighter and don't even try the boats you are looking at so no idea if they fit... If your deck fits but the footpegs are too close or too low, consider relocating the rails or building a full-size foot plate, but take a good look to make sure there is room and a solid piece of hull on which to do that.

    In the Assateague, rearranging the seating area or adding some foam for support under or on the side might help your legs going numb. Also, not that surprisingly, a LOT of seat time actually helps too. Initially, in my Tsunami 145 my legs would bother me, but that disappeared after a few weeks without other changes (and after a few months, I felt that boat was a bath tub for me: too big and slow). So, do more paddling, if you have not tried that yet -;)
  • Tempest 180
    Larger version in the Tempest series just scaled up for bigger people/bigger loads.
  • Check out the Essence 17
    -- Last Updated: Feb-13-13 5:54 PM EST --

    If you are looking for a RM boat, the Perception Essence 17 has a fairly large cockpit and pretty good room under the deck with a lot of storage space. Tracks nicely, has good seat adjustments, has a skeg but is also rudder ready if that is important. I'm 6' 1" , 220 lbs, and found it too big for me, I had a couple of inches of extra adjustments with the foot pegs. I paddle the Essence 16.5 now. It seems to me to be a lot of boat for the money.


  • Big guy boat...
    I am also in the xxl range(6'6" & 310lbs / sz-13). I found the Current Design Soltice Titian plenty roomy for me. Weight capacity is 475 for boat., which makes for a great touring boat with lots of gear.
  • tiderace xplore-X
    I'm 6'7 225 size 13 shoe. The -X was too big for me. I fit fine in the -L.
    The sterling grand illusion would fit you as well but Sterling isn't back in production yet after the fire.
  • How about a smaller kayak...
    ...one for each foot:)
  • Etain 17-7 and Shoe Size
    I have a Valley Etain 17-7 on the Showroom floor. I just hopped in with street shoes with extremely little heel to them. At my 33" inseam size 11 shoe, there was about 1" inches of clearance to the deck from the end of my shoe to the underside of the deck. This was with heels touching each other. A shorter leg length would provide a bit more clearance.

    Same measurement with a Cetus HV is about 5/8" clearance to the underside of the deck. Just beyond is a glassed in rdf so 35" inseam might make contact with a 11.5 or 12 shoe size.

    Perhaps this helps you or someone else pondering fit.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • Maybe some ideas
    I thought it was funny that the first response was for you to lose weight. It will be harder for that person to become nicer than it will for you to loose weight, but if you are like me that is a long process and you need a kayak that works for the body you have now so you can get the body you want later.

    With that in mind I have made the following list:


    Hope it helps
  • Canoe. Kruger Dreamcatcher.
    I realize you're asking about kayaks, but there are literally dozens of canoes that can fit someone your size plus plenty of room for gear. You can paddle any of them with a kayak paddle if you want. And you can still use them at any lesser body weight.

    A different idea: the Kruger Dreamcatcher is the kayak version of the Kruger Sea Wind. It was specifically designed for the Great Lakes and ocean. Not sure exactly how it would fit you, but it was designed to haul a huge amount of gear. Expensive.
  • my experience
    6'5", 240, size 16 foot.I have a Kodiak and a CD Isle, like them both. The CD Isle has much more footroom. The CD Solstice Titan was uncomfortably big for me. The CD Infinity fit fine. The North Shore Polar HV and Capella 173 are other possible choices. The Nighthawk and Assateague would probably be a bit tight. The large Tsunami would be possible, but is not as playful as the others. The new high end Perception is nice, but tighter than the others. Hope this helps.
  • Tsunami 17' 6"
    I am 5' 10" and 215. I just got done with 5 days in the glades with this kayak. I would not want to be much bigger than me in this kayak. I have size 10 gorge boots on and while I could get my feet in fine there is no way a size 15 paddler would be comfortable. Also I'm not sure the seat is wide enough. I have a 40" waist and it had probably another inch on either side for a bigger paddler too.

    Its a gear hauler and not a 'fun' kayak. It needs a rudder too. Its great for its niche but I will only paddle it for expeditions.
  • Eddyline Nighthawk 17.5
    Big Baily,

    I agree with the idea of the Eddyline Nighthawk 17.5 My paddling buddy has one, and it is a great boat.

  • Delta, Atlantis, Seaward
    Delta 15 or 18

    Atlantis Titan

    Seaward Chinook or Tyee

    Are all worth trying if you have a chance. Good luck :)
  • I was going to suggest
    checking out the Delta Expedition models as well. The Expedition models have a higher deck versus the Sport models allowing for extra foot room and well as stowage space for kayak camping.
  • Etain
    Regarding your suggestion of the Etain 17-7 for the linebacker type. How did it sit in the water at its suggested 275lb capacity? I've been trying to locate an Etain 17-7 RM to demo for some time now and have not been successful. I'm just wondering if its nearly subemerged at that weight or still has room for gear. Sorry to slip this in on someone else's thread but it's been a very difficult boat to find any reviews on.
  • Legs and feet numbness
    That needs to be addressed separate from the kayak. This is one option


    While this will take time and space to build it's a hella big boat.

  • Options
    So is a SOT not a better option for big guys? My hubby is big & we are looking for a kayak for him. We were leaning toward a SOT Perception. We do calm water/slow river trips. Nothing rough, but do want to include fishing.
  • Nigel Foster Shadow...
    I'm 6'3", 240 lbs with size 14 feet, and this boat fits me fine. Paddles well with another 50lbs of gear, so I think it would float you fine.
  • Options
    big guy boat
    you could try an NDK romany Excel although I am only 6 foot with size 11,s I found I could wear my flyfishing boots in it with no problems
  • agree on the solstice
    One of my paddling buddies up in Maine, an older guy in his 70s, tall--at least 6'5" about 250 lbs bought a solstice and absolutley loves it. Plenty of room and good stability for him---see if any of your local kayak shops carry this model and if they will let you demo it
  • Options
    I've also got size 15
    -- Last Updated: Mar-05-13 3:15 PM EST --

    I'm 6'4" and have size 15 feet too. I'm a bit lighter than you at 195lbs. I tried a bunch of boats and eventually found that the Impex Force 5 fit my feet pretty well and didn't feel too huge. I've since fallen in love with the boat. While I wish I could paddle a more greenland-style, this boat is pretty damn sweet.

    Before this I considered an CD Extreme and the biggest Tsunami they made. I never got to demo a TideRace, though they seems like fun.

  • Delta 15 is a slug . . .
    . . . in my opinion.

    The Delta 16 is said to be a great boat, but the cockpit wouldn't fit you.
  • Options
    Current Designs Solstice XL HV or Titan
    I'm 6'6", size 14s, 225 lbs

    (a good physics problem speciment 1 m tall and 100 kg)

    I paddled a Solstice GT XL HV for years. Not the most nimble boat, but a great cargo vessel and fits the big man.

    You may be able to fit in a P&H Cetus Classic or HV as well.

    Good luck.

  • Options
    Wilderness has a great product!
    I have a Wilderness pungo 120. The Sunami would be bigger.I am 5' 9" was 290lbs at my heaviest. The kayak handled my wieght well plus enough gear for a 3 day expidition. The balance is great! secondary is really good! The foot pegs can be set so long that I can't reach them. I love the boat! It does have a bit of a keel which can be a pain for fast manuvering in a windy river. That would be my only complaint. Stays strait as an arrow on the lake. Givin your size the sunami would be a great fit!
  • Boreal Nanook
    -- Last Updated: Mar-18-13 9:43 AM EST --

    A local paddler brought in a consignment kayak to my Showroom. It's a 2004 Boreal Nanook that is pristine. With street shoes on sitting in it (typing from the cockpit) my 33" inseam legs are straight out with my size 11 feet toes skyward and with about 2" of clearance to the underside of the deck. Seat is side less and with a very comprehensive back rest that comes up to mid lumbar. Cockpit foaming is about 4" from my shins getting in/out. Forward bulkhead space is waaaaaay down past my feet so padding out and bracing off the bulkhead would work for very long legged paddlers.

    Just another option onto the list.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY

  • SOT
    I'm about 300#, 6'4" with size 15/16 fee and I'll be forever thankful to the manager at the Sacramento kayak place that recommended the Wilderness Systems RIDE 11.5 (vs the 120 I was going to buy) to me 2 years ago. With 2.5 seasons of river and lake Kayaking behind me now, I couldn't be happier with this boat. It's super stable, has a 500# capacity, weighs 75#, and tracks well. I didn't get it, but you can also get a rudder on this kayak. I cannot recommend it enough!
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