chatham vs. tempest

yes they do…
…but that’s just our opinion.

personal preference
I agree that it sounds like its a matter of personal preference. For me, it would probably come down to which boat carves better turns, and which is faster. Any comments on these differences?

Carved turns
Tempest on a hard edge will just about spin in spot. Fast? 3-1/2 knots for 5 miles is a very doable in a T without much trouble. A very middle of the road kind of speed, not fastest but not a slogger either. What are you looking for?

more speed
I was looking for something faster than my Tsunami 140. On flat water I can hold 4.0 knots for 6 miles, and in rougher water (the Chesapeake Bay) I did 3.2-3.3 knots for 17 miles. I really have to work to keep these kinds of paces, I want something that will glide easier. I don’t really get the chance to do multi-day trips, so I’m mostly looking for a fast day tripper to cover lots of miles.

Tempest can meet those requirements
If it does not, it’s not the boat at fault…

You need to demo both boats and decide for yourself.

I agree, just looking for some advice in the mean time.

My informed thoughts
Both good kayaks. No one here can really help other than share their thoughts. YOU, and only you can decide after spending considerable time in each in a variety of conditions.

T 170 = higher volume, comfy outfitting, good all round performance

CH 17 = lower volume, comfy outfitting, good all round performance

The CH 17 is very neutral in wind, a nice gliding / tracking boat that can cruise along quickly. Windage is minimal and it’s a favorite (production yak)for Greenland Rolling types. I’ve spent a bit of time on the CH 17.

T 170 is a good gear hauler and would allow you to carry more stuff if that’s a need. Also tracks well and is, like the CH very maneuverable while still being directionally stable. Also rolls well (they all do). Speed differences are negligeable at best. Both are quick enough touring kayaks in the Greenland / Brit design realm. Neither are fast kayaks relative to designes focused on speed.

I have some time in a T 170, though more in a CH.

Go play with both, as well as other kayaks, and listen to your own body / instincts. No best boat, only best for you.

I like Scarpa tele boots cuz they fit my feet. Some friends prefer Garmont etc, cuz they fit their feet. Whatever you choose rest assured you’ve made a good choice that will serve you well for many years.

Then GO PADDLE to cool places and send us stories.

Thank you for the advice. BTW my feet like Asolos!

Both good choices…
…I really like both of them for the reasons Salty mentions.

My belief is that there are lots of good/great boats and no perfect boat. You will often see folks asking what is the “best” kayak or stating what they believe that “perfect” boat is. My advice is don’t agonize over that and don’t set buying the perfect boat, or your last boat, as your goal. See what feels best and go with it. Buy a good boat. Listen to what it tells you and what it teaches. Learn it’s short-comings and accept them. Get something else next time.

No big deal.