I'm getting ready to buy my first kayak. I have everything I need for my vehicle and to get it to the water. Now all I need is the boat. Going to demo a WS Tarpon 120 this Saturday. I'm 5'6" tall and weigh around 155lbs. I want a kayak I can fish on and take for a normal cruise. Will be mostly on slow moving rivers and lakes. I guess you could say multipurpose. I can only demo one a day and have heard good things about the T120. Is this a good first kayak for my size?
A mature tarpon can eat a guy your size.
…a nice all around boat for fun and fishing. You might also want to check out the 140 as well. It should track a little better due to its length and width.
Please report back with your impressions and happy hunting.
A fishing machine…
I wanted a small SOT for exercise and came across a great deal on a used T120. This is a quality kayak with a lot of features geared toward fishing. All those features come with a weight penalty and the new Tarpons (2009 and up) are heavy boats with the increased beam and gadgets.
It was way too much exercise and I sold it after two weeks and found a used Hurricane Phoenix 120, a basic boat with no gadgets but weighs 25lbs. less and was half the price of the Tarpon.
If you are not mostly fishing and more into paddling I would also demo other boats that are easier to handle on land.
I do primarily plan to use it for fishing. I like that it has the rail system, so I don’t have to drill into the kayak. I wanted a fishing kayak that I could also use to paddle around. I figured it was a good blend of both.
I think you pretty much have it figured out.
140 is nice
I took your advice and checked out the T140. I do like it but it might be a little long for some of the things I plan to do. I want to paddle some small creeks from time to time. I think the T120 would be easier to manage. I’ll just have to work a little harder when I put it in the lakes.
…should be fine for what you plan to do. There’s a cost/benefit ratio and I’d guess that you fall into the good part of the function… go too cheap and you end up with plastic junk whereas there are diminishing returns as you put more $$ on the table.
You also make a good point about the length. My kayak is just over 17 feet. I use it mostly on large lakes and sometimes the Atlantic. But there have been a couple of times that I’ve had to paddle out of small creeks backwards as my kayak was too long to turn around
Hope the T120 serves you for many years.