Dagger Katana 10.4: would you recommend?

Hey everyone! So I’m out of my normal region temporarily. I grew up in New Hampshire, spent the last 11 years in Oregon, and now find myself temporarily back in New England. I’ve still got my self some nice kayaks out in Oregon already (a 13’ touring, a 10’ rec) which suit the type of kayaking I’ve largely found myself doing there.

Now that I’m back in NH though, there are TONS of great rivers and lakes allover. I’m looking to do some decently moving rivers and some overnight camping trips. As a high schooler here we used to raid all the sandbars along the rivers and camp out to have fun, so I know the camping spots are plentiful on many of the rivers I would run.

Anyways, the Dagger Kayan has caught my eye. It seems like a spot on kayak for what I am looking to do. Decent storage, decently nimble, retractable skeg for the countless flat sections I’ll be doing, and it will be bearable if I have to take it out on some flat water fun paddles with friends and family.

I found a good deal on the kayak user already… which is rad. Any particular reasons I am not thinking of that I wouldn’t want this kayak and should go with something else?

Pretty New
The Katana is very new – not sure if many people have had a chance to paddle one yet. It seems to be Dagger’s answer to the Liquidlogic Remix XP9 and XP10 as their previous crossover kayaks, Axis (more a flat water kayak) and Approach (on the cheap side), were outclassed by other companies crossover kayaks.

Some people love crossover kayaks and others don’t see the point.

I have a Dagger Axis 12 and LL Remix XP10. I like crossover kayaks mainly as they fit my build (not many kayaks do) and I primarily like to kayak narrow twisting streams as well as class 3 and under whitewater.

I would imagine the Katana paddles pretty similar to the Remix XP. Should be tons of reviews on the XP out there (as well as comparisons to the other crossovers).

My XP is great on moving water and rapids. It tracks extremely well with the skeg down but it pushes water. It is not the kayak I would take to a lake unless I was just going to do a mellow float. You won’t be miserable on flats on a river but you also won’t be zipping along. I can’t even keep up with my friends who borrow my Axis 12 when I am in my XP on flats.

Should have plenty of room for camping gear.

Good toknow!
That’s about what I expected for lakes and what not. My 13’ touring kayak with the retractable skeg hauls butt, my 10’ rec kayak can go fast but after a certain point you’re just fighting the limits of the kayak… and I expect the boat to be about there. In the future once all my gear and myself are back in one place, I’d take the touring kayaks for lakes of course.

Definitely looking for kayak camping on moderately brisk rivers, probably class II at worse. Maybe a few very short class III sections.

Also check out the
LiquidLogic Stinger XP (not the same as the XP9 and 10) - faster and sleeker, meaning, less of a barge on flats but also a bit more demanding in terms of balance so a total novice might flip over a few times initially.

crossover considerations
I currently have a Pyranha Fusion and a Jackson Rogue. These days I mostly paddle the Rogue. Crossovers are fine for a couple of miles on lakes, but not much further. On moving water, 8 miles or so are my limit. On whitewater, crossovers handle like pumped up river runners or creekers. Surfing is definitely possible depending on the boat, but not really much else play. Rolling is boat specific - the Rogue is much easier than the Fusion. For camping, I think it is easier to pack a model that has foot pedals rather than a foot plate (like the Fusion or the Ethos or the Katana). On rivers, I gorilla tape the skeg so it doesn’t pop in the midst of rocks or rapids. Try not to over pack the boat -it definitely changes performance.

Had both
Had the XP10 and now have the Stinger XP. In spite of the names, very different boats. An over-simplification would be that the XP10 paddles like a well-outfitted rec boat with ww traits and the Stinger paddles like a ww creeker with some user friendly traits. You get Liquidlogic’s high quality build in either.