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Expedition sea kayaks

Looking for a new expedition sea kayak for long hauls I'm 220 lbs Fiberglas or Kevlar , rudders or skegs. Suggestions please and thank you happy paddling!


  • more info would be helpful
    More info would be helpful. What types of boat(s) do you currently paddle/do you like? What type of expeditions do you have in mind?
  • For point A to point B-Qcc500
    It holds a ton of stuff, tracks really well and is decently fast.
  • No surprise here.
    When I went looking for my long distance boat, I tried everything I could find. In the end I chose the Novus Composites Expedition. They are built in Tacoma, Washington; they're fast, track like they're on rails, require no skeg, nor rudder and are just plain gorgeous. Oh, and they love rough water. nckayaks.com.
  • I like my QCC 700
    For long trips you can't beat the carrying capacity. It doesn't surf as well as some. But it's fast and handles rough water well.

    Also rented a Seaward Esky(sp)for ten days and was happy with it.

  • Yes more info ...
    Like noses on faces, we all have opinions, and open ended questions like that will get you more of those than you can read!

    Here's mine: open ocean or lake (a real lake, as in a big one that ships can sail on): Valley, P&H, NDK. Calm bays and regular lakes: anything else. Nostalgic, retro turn-of-the-20th-century look for very calm lakes, paddling with a parasol: QCC.

    (That ought to set off some fireworks!)
  • I paddle pretty much everything
    I will use this boat for anything from lake circuits with multiple portages to long sea kayak trips on both coasts of Canada . And all opinions are welcome and appreciated thanks guys. The nc kayaks look sweet by the way!
  • NC ...
    NC look sweet too. Never heard of them! Nice prices too.
  • Right now I paddle
    A prijon Yukon expedition and I did have a poly tempest also a prijon Kodiak which I traded for a tandem prijon excursion
  • Freya paddled an Epic 18
    Around Australia in record time!
  • I was going to suggest a Kodiak
    For your weight and ocean paddling with gear, it's a pretty decent boat.

    But it sounds like you didn't like it.
  • The Kodiak was a nice boat really
    It didn't paddle as nice as the tempest though but was much more durable than ws poly and capacity was unreal. Tempest pro is on the short list I'm thinking it would be a very rig. Thanks again
  • NC and tiny hatches
    -- Last Updated: Feb-01-14 11:28 PM EST --

    Never paddled a NC but one thing that drives me crazy about my NDK is the 10 inch hatch openings.Friends have CD kayaks with huge oval hatches. Makes loading there kayaks faster and easyer. When I look at NC kayaks they have even smaller hatch openings. I cant imagine trying to load the front hatch on there expedition 19 kayak with a 8 inch bow hatch they use. Forget about getting my sleeping pad or even sleeping bag through that. Plus no skeg or rudder. Never paddled any kayak that couldnt use one or the other in heavy winds. The hatches would rule out NC kayaks for me at least.

    As another poster said Valley,P&H or NDK.Just choose the right size for your needs.

    As far as a kodiak from Prijon I have had a few people tell me there screw on type day hatches always leak. Thats from kayakers who roll the ones that say they have no problem with there day hatches are the ones that never get water over the top of the kayak or would ever think of rolling.Durable plastic BUT heavy as lead.

  • Impex Assateague
    Big boat for big people. You can get an awful lot of stuff in those hatches.
    easily enough room for tent, sleeping bag, changes of clothes, cooking equipment and food for a 10 day trek. Look for used, they are out there.
  • Compromise
    First, I assure you that the NC Expedition does not have an 8" bow hatch. It's 6" as is the day hatch. The stern hatch is 10". The NC Expedition is a rocket that can carry some gear, but you've got to tailor your stuff to the boat. The rear deck is wide and flat enough to carry anything too large to go inside.

    As I said, the Expedition loves rough water and is the least affected by wind of any boat I have ever paddled. NC does offer an optional rudder system, but it is not needed.
  • Went through some Tempests ...
    -- Last Updated: Feb-02-14 12:25 PM EST --

    ... Plastic 170, glass 170, glass 165. Not sure how they are built these days. My first one, plastic 170, bought back in 2000 or so, had some leaks where the skeg cable came in through the hull. Easy fix. The glass 170, bought a few years later, had a similar leak, also easily fixed. The 165, one of the early ones when they moved from NC I believe, was not so well made. Hatches leaked, skeg leaked, spider cracks in the glass, interior glass work in the real near the skeg looked like a birds nest. Growing pains I guess. Don't know how WS boats are these days.

    As far as handling they are nice boats, capable of far more than I could put them through. Not fast, but dependable and predictable. I don't camp, but they can hold a lot of gear.

    After that, picked up a Nordlow. Looked at many boats then, including the main Brits ones, Impex, etc. The Valley was like a Mercedes of Kayaks, as well all the main Brit boats, and many of the other likely suspects. The Nordlow is a great boat, pushed my learning curve.

    I've got an Epic V8 now. Never thought something that looked a little like a QCC rather than a "real sea kayak" could be used for anything more than dawdling on a flat pond sipping lemonade. Guess I was wrong, there is something about that shape after all (hate to admit it though, at least in public)...

  • Kajaksport Artisan Millennium
    Fast, carries a big load, and hard to find one for sale. Those of us who have one would never give it up.
  • negative on NC
    I bought a new NC 17 a few years ago. It was very poorly constructed, and leaked badly at the seams, and there were gaps in the bulkheads. NC told me to use some kind of goop to seal things. I found the seat terribly uncomfortable. It did not handle rough water nearly as well as a Cetus MV I compared it to, nor as well as a Seda Ikkuma. It was, however, fast.
  • Ok, I'm in
    As lkng as all options are now being suggested I'll chin in with what I paddle with in this category;

    P&H Cetus (MV or HV depending on paddler fit)
    Valley Etain (177 or 175)
    North Shore Ocean (Regular or Large)

    More recommendations I'm sure will follow.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • im really leaning towards the p&h
    cetus hv going to go check one out!
  • Got water up North?
    You test paddling, on water? All I've got is ice. Darned freshwater!

    Got indoor pool at least if you happen southward.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • halifax nova scotia
    plenty of water here!
  • the cetus hv is beautiful
    I am amazed at how snug the fit is in the hv model I was afraid it would be big and loose but it fit like a glove. that's the one for me im going to order it in black on black with black everything!
    cheers thanks for the advice
  • Check the lead time
    Great news that the fit was spot on! Sounds like my reaction to the MV.

    If you're going to special order one they'll put it on the docket for production in the UK but lead time for non-stock special orders are going to be till August optimistically.

    Too bad you're not into yellow or red.

    Biased comment I know, you're going to have a blast with the Cetus.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • Three Boats
    I usually recommend one of three boats to people. IMO these are three classic expedition boats and you can't go wrong selecting any of the three. Pending paddler height and weight, a paddler shouldn't have any problem doing expeditions in a Valley Nordkapp, a Sea Kayak UK (NDK) Explorer or a P&H Cetus. These are three designs that are time tested, haven't changed much and will offer everything a paddler would want in an expedition rigged kayak. When you get something right, no reason to screw with it too much.
  • wow nice pics where from
    one piece of gear you would probably love which I just picked up last summer sea line baha stern deck bag. sweet for lighter items on deck.
  • found some really good deals
    though and I wont be waiting till august mec told me 6- 8 weeks if that isn't doable I will buy one of the ones that I found already here.
  • carbon kevlar layup or fg
    is my only question now I found a guy with 2 2013 carbon Kevlars including keel strips and compass for a good price just not sure about the layup as I read carbon Kevlar isn't the best choice of building materials, that it doesn't bond as well as fg and is more encapsulated and will soak up water with wea and tear over time. though this comes from a different builder (nc kayaks) faq page any opinions hmm maybe another post for this one. but with a keel strip what could go wrong and for the price id be paying 100 dolars more for the 2013 than a standard 2014 fg no keel strip or compass.
  • Additional thoughts.
    If you get the chance to paddle a Valley Norkapp and a P&H Cetus, before you buy a Cetus, I would strongly suggest you do so. I've paddled all of them and I too thought I would really like the Cetus. They certainly are nice boats, but the 18' Nordkapp changed my mind.

    When you consider which type of layup to go with, consider this: There really isn't a great difference in the weight between a kevlar, carbon, or glass boat, but there is quite a difference in price. No matter which fabric, or combination of fabrics is used, the gel coat is still the weak link. When it comes to repairs, glass will be easier and cheaper to fix. I am no expert, but I have seen a demonstration that convinced me that vinylester resin does as advertised.

    About your choice of black--it will show every little mark and scratch.
  • Photos are from...
    Lake Azischohos in Maine. Items on the back deck of my boat are a camp chair and my sleeping pad and bivy in a dry bag. Both items are light. Heavier stuff is inside the boat.
  • Who's in the yellow squirt boat?
    Or whose yellow boat is under all the dry bags? Like the line from Jaws ".....need a bigger boat." or to not bring the big screen tv in the aft dry bag.

    See you on the water,
    The River Connection, Inc.
    Hyde Park, NY
  • black looks good but...
    Freya was in a black NDK Explorer during our Iceland circumnavigation (along with a black drysuit, black PFD and black paddle) and she was very difficult to see in the cold black waters among black volcanic rocks on the coast.

    Also, due to an unfortunate call from a well-meaning bystander, a search was enacted for us, and the aircraft saw me at close range during a fly-over (yellow NDK Explorer) but could not see Freya adjacent to me, and this prolonged the search.

    In Florida, black gets so hot that you can see heat waves rising from it. I have tried it and "never again".

    That said, it's your choice but just wanted to give you some of the drawbacks.

    Greg Stamer
  • Scottb's brother
    I'm more of a minimalist. Besides my kayak is18'3" and his boat is 14'.
  • ok, we've covered the heavier stuff
    but where did you put the beer and wine?

  • 12 pack
    Fits nicely between the foot pegs of my boat. I also have a small hatch to access the skeg area at the rear of the Artisan and can fit 8 more cans in there if I need to.

    One of the other guys had a Boreal Ellesmere. I was not impressed with it at all. Have yet to find any kayak that paddles as smoothly as mine does and is as comfortable to sit in for hours.
  • nice
    Every cubic inch counts. Because they let us bring more stuff!
  • wow good points
    I think I will be buying one of the boats I found locally anyways now just because of the savings one is white and the other yellow with white hull.
  • in this case price isnt an issue
    I can buy a 2013 carbon Kevlar (not the ultra light)with the keel strip and it also includes a flushmount compass, for 100 dollars more than the fg with no keel strip or compass.
  • get this
    WHy not the yak that hold THE world record for longest paddle trip??? Here is map of route:

    Hull design holds 11-world records in expedition paddling....best boat if you ask me. Expensive but comfy, effiecient, strongest production boat on the market, easy to portage.
    DreamCatcher Kruger design
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