Boreal or Riot?

I don’t have unlimited funds, but I think that I have convinced Santa (aka She Who Must Be Obeyed) into a touring boat for Christmas.

It appears that I can afford something in the ilk of a Boreal Design Muktuk or Riot Evasion. We have one review on the Muktuk in the archives here and nothing on the Evasion.

Does anyone have experience with either, or a similar boat by another manufacturer.

I am 5’9" and between 183-190, depending on how much I consumed the day before.

Thanks in advance

Stay away from Boreal! :frowning: :frowning:
I made the mistake of buying a Boreal Kayak one time, and I will NEVER do it again. I had problems with it, and tried getting help from the factory itself. They finaly told me to quit bothering them, and stopped replying to my e-mails.

You can read my review here on P-Net on the Boreal “Nanook”. I have spoken with others who had a similar problem with Boreal.

Check out the Impex Line of Kayaks. They are well made, and reasonably priced. I love my Assateague. You can read my review here on P-Net for my Assateague! :slight_smile:

Good Luck!

You may have seen this review
on the Evasion but if not I’ll post a link:

I have recently seen a few of the new Riot yaks (but have not paddled them). They seem like solid well thought out boats; however do not rely heavily on the opinion of one who has not paddled them.

about the boreal kayaks…
I have heard so many complaints about boreal design’s service on this forum, it’s rididculus. I don’t think they like there buyers. But the custumers are the people keeping them in bussiness, so they better change their thinking, cause I saw some bad rumors spread about them.

I own a Riot Evasion
Bought my Evasion with rudder new about 6 months ago. Here’s my unofficial review:

Regarding the fit: I’m close to your size… 5’7, 180 lbs (but I’m gonna lose it) and it fits me quite nicely. I used to have a Riot Stealth and it had the same kind of fit… snug but very comfortable. The Riots may be the most comfortable boats I’ve owned. That’s just me. Try for yourself (I’m sure you will).

Fairly low profile, wind doesn’t affect it much. Tracks QUITE well due to the “channelled hull”. I’ve never used the rudder yet - don’t need to. I’ve had it out probably 12-15 times in wind up to 15-18 mph and it performed very nicely. Have you seen that hull? It’s very different from anything else I’ve seen. It takes some getting used to. May feel very tippy at first, but feels more solid when moving through the water (medium primary, good secondary). The hull also makes leaned turns very effective. The bad news: that hull also makes it easier to catch a wave from the side and flip, so you may need to be careful about that and make sure to lean when you need to, away from waves that hit from the side. No big deal once you’re used to it.

FYI: The first time I demoed it, I hated it. Paddled it about 20 yards, brought it back to the dock and said “definitely not that one”. Not sure what made me try it again. I liked the look of it and later couldn’t remember what my objections were, so a couple of months later I tried another one. Paddled it a bit farther this time and liked it a lot more. Decided to take a chance and buy one because a dealer gave me an awesome price and I liked the fit so well. I don’t regret my decision. The negative is, it’s a tad heavy for me to load alone, but that could be said of most plastic kayaks in the same length range.

I like the hatches a lot, hard plastic with neoprene underneath and bungees on top, and they stay dry.

As far as speed, I’m not a good one to evaluate that because I’m slow in every boat. Poor upper body strength, including torso.

Not sure about rudder deployment (haven’t really used it) but the cord doesn’t want to stay in the “keeper” and it sometime slips around. I’m sure that’s easily remedied, I just haven’t done it.

The plastic seems nice and sturdy. Hasn’t oil-canned so far, even in the heat. Overall, I’m very happy with the Evasion.

If you have any other specific questions that I didn’t cover, e-mail me or post here. I have never paddled a Boreal so I can’t offer a comparison there.

Good luck on your boat quest!


That depends upon your area
It sounds like you’re just getting into sea yakking. You should go with a used boat or a sea kayak model that is popular in your area.

This will minimize your risk.

I think all the boreal complaints
are coming from the same person, who obviously had a bad experience with Boreal. I bought a Boreal Design Pakesso this spring and am very happy with it. The Pakesso however would definitely be the wrong fit for you.