Kayak Suggestion

-- Last Updated: Jul-08-12 9:06 AM EST --

I plan on getting a boat in the next few months and was hoping to get some suggestions. This will be my first boat purchase.

I spent two field seasons (June - October '08 & '09) using a Perception Prodigy 12 and occasionally a different older model 10' Perception boat. I was mostly using the 12' Prodigy. I spent most of my time on the Blue and Muscatatuck rivers in southern Indiana. I have no formal training. I'm 5'8" and about 145-150lbs.

I will probably spend 90% of my time on these types of rivers. Slow-moving with lots of rocks. Mostly day trips with a few weekenders. However, I'm really interested in the occasional week-long touring trip.

I'm looking for something to satisfy all of these needs. I'd like to upgrade from the Prodigy/rec boat style into something requiring a little more skill that I won't be replacing in short order. Something I can grow with. My price range is max $1500, but I'd prefer keep it below $1300. I'm not opposed to used if I can find it.

I look forward to your suggestions.



are you near Louisville?

– Last Updated: Jul-08-12 4:11 PM EST –

This 14' Dagger for sale in Louisville might be a good boat for you. Read the reviews:


It sounds as if other owners have used it successsfully for the uses you are interested in (up to Class II streams and short camping trips). Personally, I have several kayaks and the one I own that is most similar to the Edisto is what I use for shallow rocky rivers like you are describing. I think a 14' to 15' plastic light touring boat would be a good range for your size and ambitions. Some models like that within your budget would be the Perception Carolina 14, Wilderness Systems Tsunami 140, Niecky Manitou or Eskia, Elie Strait 140 and Venture Easky 15LV. These are all around $1000 to $1500 depending on options. I don't think you need a rudder or skeg, but having one would not be a drawback.

A lot of the choice will depend on what is available locally and how they feel to you when you sit in them. It would be best if you could find a dealer who offers demos or has on-the-water test paddling options.

But buying the used Edisto would be a lower cost way to see if this is the style and size that will suit you. I think $600 is a little steep for a kayak that is at least 10 years old but if you could get it for $400 it would be a good deal and a nice upgrade boat.

There is also this one, virtually new, in Columbus Indiana, near Bloomington:


Use the P.Net Boat Guide
A great starting point to see what you like


Perception Carolina 14ft or Tribute 14ft

might fit your needs

Perhaps a Necky Manitou 14ft

Having a rear, dry, bulkhead, with a hatch makes

it easy to carry some gear securely in a drybag.

Another boat to consider would be
the North Shore Aspect LV. It is a great all around light touring boat that would be great for your size. It is not as well known of a company, but everyone that has one really seems to like it and people that try mine a super happy with it for the $.



Thanks everyone for your replies. Sorry it took me so long to respond; I’ve been out of town for work.

I’ll look into several of those boats. River City Canoe and Kayak is nearby and I think they have occasional demos. Hopefully they’ll have some of those models.

Do you think any of those suggested boats would be good for a week long trip? I tend to be an efficient packer.