Input: Best/Favorite Kayak for Surfing

I’m at the ECCKF in Charleston. Just starting to get into surfing with a sea kayak (ocean surf zone only around here). Wish list would be a kayak just for that.

Give me a short, even just the kayak that you think is the best. Trying to get a list of boats to paddle today and tomorrow at the festival.

Sidebit: Nigel Foster votes for the Point 65 N Whisky 16. I didn’t realize he designed it until this morning. But he was in it watching me entertain folks by doing silly kayak balancing (or rather not balancing attempts) and getting myself wet over and over. (shallow water).

If it makes a difference. 5’10 169 lbs. (with PFD and spray skirt on).

My current boats are a Tempest 170 and a Dagger Alchemy LV 14’ (courtesy of Subaru of America).

Bill G.

Mt. Pleasant, SC

I like the NDK Explorer a lot. It is easy to catch waves and it tracks well so it is easy to stay on them. It has a lot of volume in the bow so it doesn’t pearl, and has enough rocker to be sufficiently maneuverable. Last it is also very confidence inspring in really big stuff if you get into surfing enough to get out on really big days.

The Romany Surf is good too but I think I may like the Explorer better or at least for surf zone stuff.

Standing waves and currents I like the shorter Romany Surf.

I have heard great things about the Whiskey but have also heard it is a bit of a different boat in terms of handling and takes some getting used to. Also is not a very good all-around boat for much other than just playing from what I have been told.


Lose the Seakayak -much better choices

– Last Updated: Apr-17-10 1:59 PM EST –

If you are going to spend a lot of time on the coast chasing waves you will soon find a long displacement hall boat is 1. a waste of good waves and 2. not welcome by anybody else you share the water with. If you want good waves, likely you will be sharing it with others using surfboards, boogie boards, SUPs. A seakayak is too long and non-maneuverable to be used on steep, fast surf and in situations with other surfers in the water.

If you really want to start surfing look at a SOT like the Cobra Strike or find a used longer surf boat like a Mako surf kayak made by PS composites. A lot of cool longer boats are being made now by Mega and Murky waters see link below. (The longer models are called "international class", shorter "High Performance Boats" have a bit of a learning curve and are best in high quality surf. Also consider a wave ski like the Island Longboard HP ski or an infinity ski (hard to find on the East coast, but probably perfect for more marginal surf.)

Not the “surf”

– Last Updated: Apr-17-10 8:31 PM EST –

The Romany Surf isn't a surf boat as much as it's an extra large Romany. If this person is 149 pounds (oops - edit; 169 pounds), then a Surf isn't even worth trying. Someone that size will fit the regular Romany better.

I'll say that in my opinion a Pintail is a good sea kayak for playing in surf, waves, around rocks etc, but if you're really looking for a dedicated surfing boat, I'd agree that you might do best looking outside of the "sea kayak" realm. If you want to get a boat just for surfing, get a surf kayak.

Couldn’t agree more…except for the
omission of Mega Surf Kayaks. Shame on you. ; )


As far as sea kayaks go
it’s hard to do better than a Pintail.

check again Mega is there …

Cobra Revision another one too.

Sorry! But the comment was more
tongue in cheek. You rep the surf kayakers here very well.


If Impex is there you should check out their new surf/rough water boat called the Hatteras. I only demoed it on a small lake so i’d love to hear how it surfs. Should fit you well.

i have had a bunch of boats
including Mega surf boats…and have sold them all for my Rockhopper…between the rockhopper and the Tempest (and the SUP baords) i am set…

Savannah Canoe Kayak
Get a few hours of Nigel Law’s time out of Savannah Canoe and Kayak.