I am completely new to kayaks. I only have experience with a pirogue and a 12 ft. aluminum boat. I am looking for the most quality (and stability) for my money when it comes to a SOT kayak. We will be paddling around reservoirs for the most part. I would like a tandem or a kayak with room for a 50 lb. dog. I would also like to be able to fish comfortably from the kayak. Weight capacity must be 325 lbs. +. Any recommendations and advice you can give would be greatly appreciated. I have looked at the OK Scrambler, Lifetime Manta, and Lifetime Kokanee…I would like to stay $500 and under. Thank you.
Maybe a Prowler?
Ocean makes that, they are very, very stable fishing SOT kayaks, difficult to tip over.
addition to the Prowler (excellent yak), look at the Malibu X13 and the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 12 or 14’. Try before you buy.
Lifetime has good products…
Lots of good products out there but I do like Lifetime products. They’re usually pretty solid with a good reputation.
With a 50 lb dog, it might be worthwhile looking into tandem kayaks. There will be just that much more room for your dog and you without feeling cramped. Plus they generally have a higher weight capacity, which seems to be a criteria of yours.
The tradeoff will be price, however. Bigger kayak, more room/weight capacity = more money. Finding that middle ground is always hard.
If you have specific kayaks you’re looking into, paddling.net has a place for product reviews where users are able to post their own reviews and you can get an idea from those.
Otherwise, I’ve got some kayak reviews on my site you can look at if you need more information. I’ve got two separate articles, one for SOTs and one for tandem fishing kayaks, I think you’ll find both helpful.