After Acadia Scout?

Hi. I have a large 9-year-old son (4’10" and 90 lbs) who has been kayaking for 4 years. He currently has an Acadia Scout but has gotten increasingly frustrated with its uncomfortable seat on long paddles and its inability to track straight, especially in windy weather. We mostly paddle lakes and tidal estuaries.

So, thoughts on an upgrade? My husband and I have Perception Prodigy 12s and he can handle them, but they seem a bit too wide? His paddle tends to bang the sides as it comes down. So I’m hoping to hear what has worked for other paddlers with small frames.

We don’t have a big budget, so we’d like to keep it in the $500 range. Thanks!

You may need to shop used for
something that will keep him in the boat and not off chasing girls. To be somewhat encouraging, there’s often super buys of lightly used kayaks at $500 and under.

Narrower kayaks can be very user friendly if designed right. Small tweaks in outfitting (foot, knee, low back) support sometime make it easier to stay up to a nice cruising speed and, within reasonable limits, kayaks actually like to track straight when moving well. ("Ralphie…You’re getting too far ahead of us!)

Others will nominate boats for a used kayak search. Dealers and outfitters sometimes let rental boats go early or late in the season, for good prices.

Yes, we are definitely open to buying used.

I think you’re right about adjustments to the seat being important. I’m wondering if the deck height also comes into play, as far as accommodating his shorter torso? Our Prodigy kayaks are fairly narrow (for a recreational kayak) but they do have a high deck height?