So here is the deal I am planning a fundraising kayak trip for the end of this summer. I need some help finding the right boat. It is a very long trip. NW PA where I live down to New Orleans, so I need as much storage as possible. I am fairly novice so it has to have good stability and I plan on giving it away once the trip is over so I don’t want to spend a lot of money on it. My budget is around $300 or less. it’s a tough one I know, but can anyone help me?
Hopefully you realize that you will also need a paddle, PFD, and probably a spray skirt?
With a $300 budget you are certainly looking for used boats, not new, so it is pointless to seek specific recommendations for makes and models. You will have to go with what you can find used that has enough capacity for your needs.
You might conceivably be able to find a rotomolded polyethylene sea kayak with bulkheads and waterproof hatches front and back that fits your budget (but I doubt it). I suspect you will have to settle for the biggest recreational kayak you can lay your hands on.
If you really want to go through with this, I would suggest you do at least a few all day paddles and a few overnight trips first. I would also look into the possibility of borrowing a boat. If it is a fund raising event a manufacturer might possibly sell you a “blem” at cost, or even below cost.
Here is a resource
The Missippi might not be the best choice for a nearly novice paddler. Sandbars, strong winds, wash from tugs and barges and a nearly three month time commitment. You will also be going in hurricane season
Get a boat loaned
And promise to write the story up for some kayak place. $300 is simply too little to get the boat plus the stuff you'll need, even leaving off the question of whether this is a sensible idea for a novice. (It isn't.)
Have dreams but some how I feel this is a bad one to follow up on.
I don’t see how you can do such a trip
on so limited a budget. Consider an alternative. Get people to pledge to contribute according to how far you actually get. You could have a nice trip down the Ohio as far as Louisville, where there would be a portage.
You mention starting around September. That would put you well into the colder months at the best rate I think you could expect.