kayak for small female

Looking for suggestion for a kayak for a small female. She is wanting a boat about 12 long x 24 or less inches. She is a progessing paddler.

Thanks for your help.

Tsunami 120
If she is willing to take classes the 140 will be a better all around boat. 12 footers are so slow!

Tsunami SP?
Depending on how small, this boat may fit the bill. Not a pokey boat for 12’.

too wide

– Last Updated: Sep-29-11 9:02 AM EST –

Depending on her size, the Tsunami 135 or SP would be a better choice than the 120 or 140. I'd look at the SP first because the 135 is heavy.

or, you can dream
…expand the length to 13’, and search for a Mariner Coaster!

How small?
If she is an average to smaller woman, maybe the Tsunami 135. (Yes, the 120 would likely be a barge. Too wide.)

If she is really tiny, that could change things.

I am concerned about your wanting a boat 12 ft or less for a “progressing paddler” of any size. For a boat that will well support learning what the ACA and BCU regard as intermediate skills, you have to add a couple of feet unless you are talking whitewater.

really? not sure I agree
At the risk of sounding defensive I think one could progress to that point in either of the recommendations I made. Sounds a bit too dogmatic to me.

Why just Tsunami?
There are other choices out there both current and out of production.

Sonoma 13.5 (I think that was the #) by perception in airalite comes to mind. No longer made.

I’m sure there’s other suggestions to follow.


See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY


Current Designs Vision 120 SP
12 feet, 23 inches, two bulkheads, 32 pounds, made for small people.


if really small
Take a look at Current Designs Raven


now we’re talkin’!
…and what a great kid’s kayak also!

Used WS Piccolo
Slightly longer at 13 ft plus, and only 20.5" beam. Yet it has high initial stability. Low deck, too.

This will be a LOT more fun to progress in than some wide boat.

Add float bags because it does not have bulkheads.

This assumes she is small AND light.

Marine Coaster

– Last Updated: Sep-29-11 2:33 PM EST –

...are largely a pipe dream. Every once in a while it appears on the market and got snatch up faster than a $100 bill at Time Square!

Expanding the length a couple feet will open up a lot more sub-24" width boats to choose from.

Impex Mystic?

14ft long but light fast and fun.

For a smaller paddler
My wife and I are new to kayaks. She just got a Tsunami 135 and I got the 140. She is very happy with the boat, the slightly narrower beam and lower desk height fit her much better than the 140, which felt big to her. We are very happy with both boats for the local lakes and reservoirs here in central NC.

The Alchemy 14S might be another good choice. I couldn’t fit in it at all, but it fit the wife very nicely. It’s more lively and maneuverable compared to the Tsunami and the skeg makes it easy to track well also.


Take a look at a Necky Eliza. Longer than 12’, but made for small women, great kayak for novices and for developing skills. Another one is Seaward Cosma, or Seaward Luna.

small kayaker
Check out the Delta 12.10…

How About an Epic V-12?
Made the mistake of letting a small 13 year old female test out an Epic V-12. Now that’s all she wants. Said it was comfortable sitting higher in the cockpit and being able to hang your legs over the side. Prefers it more than the V-10L.

For all the great suggestions. I have a Delta 10-12 and it is just a little big put we were not sure the Tsunami SP would be big enough. The borad has provided some good food for though.


Used WS Tchaika

Used Eddyline Falcon 16

CD Suka

Avocet LV

If you’d consider building…

Pygmy Tern 14

CLC Shearwater 14

Skin-on-frame boats can be easily tailored to the paddler’s size.