14' Yak Advice

Like some others on the message boards, I am looking to buy my first Kayak. Going with a 14’ boat, to be used for river/lake cruising and multi-day trips in the midwest (live in STL MO).

Have been to a few demo days and am trying to weigh pros/cons between the Jackson Journey 14 and the WS Tsunami 140.

The Journey turns better, has nice seat too…the WS tracks better, also has a nice seat.

It will come down to feel, but I am curious to get the thoughts of those on this site with more experience than myself.

So, any thoughts/comments/etc?? Thanks!

Both nice boats
So it gets down to personal preference. However, I wouldn’t make the call without trying the Dagger Alchemy.

CD Whistler
Should be a boat being considered. Love mine!

The CD Whistler
or Breeze would be a great choice along with the Tsunami’s.

Venture Islay
Just to add another really nice paddling 14 footer to the playlist

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY


+1 for the alchemy…
…comfy fit, decent storage volume, good deck outfitting, decent cruising speed and handles like a sports car. One of a few boats that will take good care of a novice yet is a great play boat for an advanced paddler, rolls great, carves like it’s on rails, surfs pretty darn good and will track great with just a tad of help from the skeg; a little wet of a ride in rough water, (paddling is a water sport right?), but the low profile makes it good in wind. Only problem I’ve had with it is I ended up “having” to buy another plastic boat,(zephyr 15.5), for when going with my wife,(since she’s claimed the dagger).

Best of luck, t.george

Gonna give you some cons re The tsunami
and its with quality. I was doing some fill in guide work at Tahoe last month. The plastic Wilderness Systems Boats take on lots of water in the holds, break seats, leak through the skeg cables…

Check Craigslist… There are a few really good deals on longer boats… That Caribou for $1000 is screaming.

The Pachena is similar to the Breeze and Whistler, and is really nice - discontinued, but they still come up. I regret passing up a kevlar model a few years back.

Good feedback! Jackson Journey?
Thanks for the advice! Did not look much at CD boats…the shop I live near carries only one model in the store, others would have to be shipped. Definitely something to think about.

Any feedback or experience paddling Jackson Journey 14? Or hear anything about it?

The 14’ decision-what fun!

– Last Updated: Mar-10-15 2:30 AM EST –

First of all my experience level. I consider myself an advanced novice, with one self rescue class and a paddling class. I have @ 30 hrs on mostly calm waters. After driving a hundred miles to Portland I was able to demo both the Islay and the Journey. In fact it took me two demos for me to make up my mind. What I liked about the Islay is that it seemed faster than the Journey and the skeg made it a delight to paddle in strong current. I also liked the little day pod at the top of the deck. both of my demos took place at the Alder Creek Kayak center located a walking minute of the Columbia River. On my second demo I had pretty much made up my mind. I was there to purchase the Islay. For some reason I decided to demo the Jackson Journey again. The outfitting in the Journey was far superior to the Islay. A lot of effort has gone into the design of the cockpit and it really shows. I paddled both boats in sheltered light current and also in strong straight and cross currents with winds up to 10 knots. The Journey wanted to wander but by simply leaning and some paddle corrections I was able to correct course without any issues. The Islay's beam is 3/4" less, it weighs a lb or two less, an again I thought the Islay was slightly faster and certainly the skeg helped keep it going in a straight course. The decision pretty much came down to which boat was more fun. The Journey fit me like a glove, the Islay's seat was very loose fitting. The back band on the Islay felt awkward and (I hate to say it) cheap. My 32" inseam legs were also on the next to last setting on the foot pegs. I could also touch the forward bulkhead with my size 10 feet out-stretched. This 60 year old, 6', 200 lb man is very happy with his new Journey. I know other people have compared the Dagger Alchemy, the Islay and the Journey and came up with a different decision. But this is a decision that you really can't make a bad choice. You should demo the boats, if possible, because the bottom line is you need to decide which boat is the most fun for you. For me, I feel more "connected" in the Journey. Sure we're going to get tossed around a little bit - what fun.