CD Caribou owners. Do hatches leak ?

Demo-ing lot of LV day boats. Like the Caribou S performance alot. However no day hatch (minor problem) and I am concerned about hatch leakage. Any knowledgable comments on if they leak and if CD may change design to “rubber” hatches. Have to say I like the look of the composite hatches though.


New Hampshire

Never, ever a drop…

Played in waves, rolled, and took it camping fully loaded and never had a drop of water through the hatches, skeg or bulkheads. I even had it foamed from the front bulkhead as foot braces and the bulkhead was fine.

Best hatch design in the industry IMHO and they seem raccoon proof. Just keep the gaskets clean and the straps adjusted.

went on a trip with a friend
in Maine for a week, he was in a Caribou,WAY loaded with LOTS of water across the bow and stern. Did I say lots? LOTS. His packing method relied overly on dry hatches, tossing loose packages of ramen and food into the hatches.

Packing/unpacking everyday. I think he got a few drops.

I’ve never had a boat with hatches that
didn’t leak a bit at some point. That’s why most of us don’t rely on only the hatches to keep things dry. I think it’s pretty much to be expected.

Yeah, they seem to keep out water that washes over the deck really well. There’s a gutter surrounding the opening that could help in that respect, it’s like a first line of defense. On the other hand that usually means there’s water in the gutter area you need to sponge out after an outing.


But have you had a Caribou?

never more tha na few drops in mine
very effective but I’d still drybag what I thought might need it.

more than a few drops for me
I’ve had my Caribou S for a year. In my opinion its a great kayak except for the hatches. I usually have at least a cup or two of water in front and back after a long day of rough water paddling or rescue practice. Also, I don’t like the metal latches. I have snagged my PFD on them and cut my hands when climbing on the back deck.

Maybe I shold have talked about
snagging a PFD on the latch Been there done that!

I’m not a fan of those.

Figured out why?
It doesn’t necessarily surprise me that examples could leak, it seems like a really labor-intensive task to get all that fiberglass constructed just right to form a decent seal.

Yeah, I’m not crazy about the latches and straps either, at least partly simply because of appearance.


Releasing the straps
One thing that may or may not be relevant, I believe the owner’s manual recommends releasing the hatch straps during off-season storage to keep the gaskets from becoming permanently squashed, I take that to what some may consider an excessive degree by releasing them after every outing.

And yes, one time I did head off down the road towards the water forgetting to retighten the front ones. They came completely undone but fortunately the hatch did not actually lift off.


Never a drop…
even after blasting the sucker at a high pressure car wash. I used to release the buckles when not in use and kept 'em lubed (gaskets). Wish all boats had those latches, loved them about as much as the Kajak Sport hatches, maybe better when hands where cold and numb.

Something you CAN wax…
Keeping the lip and gasket clean I think is the key. I would wax the inner lip and keep 303 on the rubber, releasing the straps when stored.

How many boats have you had.
I have a old Perception Eclipse and my wife has the same age Perception Shadow, and the hatches have never leaked a drop.

They have been surfed in over and over and have had breaking water come over them more times than I can count.