frequent renter looking to buy

-- Last Updated: Mar-06-15 2:27 PM EST --

So usually I end up renting a canoe or kayak once or twice a year. Figured it's time to stop wasting money and buy a kayak. My problem is that I like to fish, camp and photography. I end up camping near calm waters most the time but also lake superior once a year as well.

The way I see it I can get a fishing kayak or more of a recreational kayak and equip it with fishing mounts and such. Basically I'm asking if a fishing kayak can be used on a lake like superior and or is mounting a rec kayak with fishing mounts really effective. Thanks in advance !!

Old town
has the dirigo in several sizes, the 12 is a nice versatile size. it is a rec boat but also comes rigged for fishing. It is the same boat, with or without rod holders. I would get the angler model. a lot of other rec boats do that too. you are not losing anything by getting the angler set up, and it is probably better than retrofitting with after market gear.

one opinion. have fun

too short for Superior

– Last Updated: Mar-06-15 4:33 PM EST –

Superior is big water and the Dirigo is not designed for that kind of paddling. Too short, too wide and wrong hull profile. It would be balky to paddle and highly unstable and unmanageable in waves, wind and strong currents. The big sloppy cockpit would be fine on a placid river or pond but a definite liability in big open water. It isn't clear from the OT stats whether it has dual bulkheads either, a major safety issue Doesn't have real deck lines either nor can it be retrofitted with a rudder, both being features usually necessary for Superior.

Paddling in Superior can be quite hazardous especially due to the cold water even in Summer and the rapid weather changes. If you really intend to kayak there you need to adjust your sights to consider more serious touring types of kayaks. When a manufacturer describes a model as "recreational" it is meant only to be used in smaller bodies of water (ponds and lakes you can see across) and fairly low flow rivers.

You didn't state your size but 14' is usually the minimum for an open water touring boat, with 24" or less beam. If you are a big guy, that might even be too small to perform well. What have you rented and what types of waters do you have experience with? Don't venture out onto the Great Lakes without some instruction in paddling and in self-rescue.

why not buy the kayak for what you
mostly do - fishing, rec boating on inland waters - and if you want to do Superior rent a seakayak for that.

good idea

Fishing and photography want a wider
stable boat.

Camping just means you want a boat that holds more than a backpack.

Paddling on the Great Lakes calls for a different kind of boat.

I would buy your first boat for what you plan to do most (fishing and rec paddling?) then later get a serious yak for the big lake.

I personally think 14 ft is minimum length for a sit inside unless you paddle white water. In the long run you’ll be glad you didn’t go shorter.

thanks for the advice !
Thanks for all the advice, had a feeling I’d need something bigger for superior. I can easily rent a proper kayak for that and worry about a kayak for calmer waters for now. Maybe take the time to make sure my skill level matches the bigger lake in the meantime as well.

Lake Superior is about boat and paddler. Worry about your skills then the boat, in the meantime get something for the majority of your use that you can enjoy now.

Once or twice a year
Is a lot cheaper than buying if it’s only a couple days each time.