Long time lurker here, first time posting. I've been following conversations for a while, especially those with advice on what sea kayak to use for what occasion. Also on Drysuits vs semi-dry.
Finally the time has arrived for my first sea kayak purchase. I've been kayaking a rec (10 ft) for over year, my wife and I recently moved and will begin sea kayaking this season. I've already lined up indoor pool lessons for us (rescue, wet exits, beginning sea kayaking, etc) for the next month or two.
As I researched for almost a year, out of everyone's reviews I was leaning towards a Zephyr 155 or a tempest 160 as my first sea kayak. It's in my price range, people review them very highly, and they seem to have what I'm looking for.
- A boat I can grow into
- Playful *** very important
- Can handle camping gear (I don't need extended trips' worth, but for a weekend or so they seem to have more than enough space)
- Decent speed
- Comfortable seat
- Eventually I'd really like to learn how to roll
The truth is that I won't need to be the fastest on the water, especially since I will almost always be paddling with my wife who is a bit slower paced. However, if I go with other groups I want to be able to at least keep up with the group.
So the dilemma comes late into my search. It seems that most people still consider the Romany worth checking out at some point in their kayak career. So, in your past experience, do you guys consider it a better idea to search for a used Romany or the like, or would a Zephyr/Tempest suit me well? What about the plastic version of the Romany? Does anyone have experience with it?
Also, my stats are 5'11", 165 lbs.
Any feedback would be a great help. I know there isn't one boat out there that's perfect for everything, but I think I can certainly narrow it down based on what I want to do with it.