1st kayak advise

Looking at buying my 1st kayak this spring. Nothing

real big or expensive for many reasons. I am sorting

out 9.5’ boats…suggestions?

Before Buying
try them all. Old Town Otter, Santee, etc. Go to several kayak shops and test them in the water. Sitting in one in the shop is not a true test. Best yet, check the Events Calendar in Features (column to the left) to see who is having a Kayak Festival near you. Go to one and test ALL the 'yaks you can. And while you at it, don’t forget to try out various PFD, paddles, and safety gear.

Stay safe on the water

If you have room, don’t buy anything
under 12’. If all you ever paddle are ponds or small creeks, a 9.5 is fine but one friend with a 12’ boat will make you feel like you are paddling a snail. I started with a 12’ and loved it until I tried paddling with the 16’ crowd and haven’t been shorter than 16’ since.

Kayak advice
I know I want to stick to a small more inexpensive

boat at this time.Speed is of no importance to me.

I went to canoecopia and have some ideas that I will try in the water at rutabaga. Dagger Zydeco and perception sundance…any thoughts on these or other ideas I may have overlooked?

Necky Sky…

– Last Updated: Mar-19-06 9:26 PM EST –

Checkout the Necky Sky - 9.5ft long, 26" beam, 41lbs. With a smaller beam, multi-chined diamond hull & dolphin bow, it will perform better than the Zydeco & Sundance especially in variable conditions. It tracks well, is very comfortable, and is a lot of fun to paddle.

I'm 6ft 175lbs and have owned a Sky for over 4 years. I've paddled it in a variety of conditions on rivers, flatwater, and the ocean. My favorite place to paddle it is on the Sea of Cortez (Mexico).

Sundance 12

– Last Updated: Mar-19-06 11:14 PM EST –

I love my Sundance 12. Two years ago when I took lessons at Rutabaga, that was the kayak that they were using in their rec kayak classes. That should tell you something.

It also comes in a 9.5 foot version

Still, you should paddle several different brands. Rutabaga has several that should suit your needs. Try them all. What's right for me may not be right for you.