choosing a kayak

I am new to this site and had some questions…

I am a 14 year old around 135 lbs and am shopping around for a kayak. I specifically like 3 perceptions including the swifty, sparky, and the sundance 9.5. Another one of my choices is the Necky sky.

The paddling im going to do is mainly flatwater lakes, mild river, and maybe eventually ocean (if thats possible in the kayak i choose). I want a kayak that will be somewhat easy to paddle distances and yet have good or atleast okay menueverablilty. I was wondering which one would be the best fit. Thanks

All would be ok
but you may want to broaden your choices. Try renting. CSU Sac aquatic center at Lake Natomas has rentals. Also check the Bask website They have lots of used boats on their website. Even have a 16ft fiberglass boat for $500.

thanks for the suggestion!!!

The reason i chose these were for the price. I have started looking at others too

If your buget is limited…
…than that Swifty is a great choice.

My wife and I started kayaking with Keowees, which is the exact same kayak, only the older model.

They will do everything that you listed, but you should keep in mind that any kayak that is that short will be much slower, and not track nearly as straight as a longer kayak.

We used ours in lakes, on white water rivers as well as the ocean.

Sometimes we would take off in the ocean and paddle them all day long.

Even though we now have several other longer touring kayaks, we still use our Keowees for shallow white water rivers, which are too small for our big yaks, and we also teach our grandchildren with them.

Cheers, and stay happy,


thank you

when i get back from my trip Tuesday i think i will go rent a swifty and try it out. Sounds like a great yak

We have 5 boats -all but one were bought used (and the new one I got at half off…) and they’ve all worked well for us over the years and into the present.

Tsunamichuck offers good advice -and your getting around and trying many boats will pay big benefits as it’ll let you get a far better feel for what you can handle (at least phyically and not fiscally). You might be surprised that you just may be able to go bigger and still be comfortable and have the performance characteristics you’re looking for.

Sort of like buying a computer -get as uch as you can handle to start, it’ll last you longer. In kayaking, in most cases, as you progress on the sport and your interest grows, you may end up like most of ther rest of us: you’ll want bigger, badder, faster boats to do more, and do it more efficiently.

And while you’re at it, look over in the left margin -you’ll see the Buyer’s Guide. Click on it and read thru the articles-they’re really quite good at giving you a picture of why kayaks do what ther do and helps a lot of folks make decisions on what to buy.

Good Luck! Hopefully you’ll have a great, affordable boat (PLUS good paddle and good PFD, of course) to get out there and

Paddle On!

-Frank in Miami

Hey, you got good taste!
I’ve had two Swifty’s and love them. I would never sell it without having another one ready. Swifty and Sparky are the same boat, but the Sparky is minus the bungee cords. You can add them yourself a lot cheaper than buying the Swifty with them. You will have a lot of fun with them. The sundance, BTW, is also a slightly stretched Swifty. If you look at it closely, there are just a few more perks and a slightly sleeker design. Good Luck and hope you let us know what you get!

And if you want to show your age
…You can add that the Keowee was the first of the gang!

Cheers, and stay happy!


thank you all
i checked in the classifieds for a used swifty and found an ok deal but yak had sold

ill keep looking and ill check out what you guys said


consider this…
after going to 2 demos my son and I decided on the OT Sport model “Rush” it did everything we wanted it to do with great comfort and manueverbility and the tracking was very good for that size boat… we just took them down the loyalsock creek this weekend at flood stage (class 2-3 rapids) and they handled beautifully for not being white water boats …rule of thumb try before you buy…!