Kayak suggestions (not a newbie)

-- Last Updated: Jan-28-16 10:12 PM EST --

***edited to change max kayak length to 14.5'***

Hi, I'm not really new to p-net but haven't posted here for a LONG time. I think I used to have an ID and password but I have long since forgotten them. Sorry.

Anyway, here's the short story:

I had a heart attack a few months ago. It's okay, I'm actually doing fine, but it did prompt me to lose some weight (finally). I have a fitness goal that I am working towards, so I'm thinking if.. no, WHEN I reach that goal, I am going to buy myself a new kayak.

I've had lots of kayaks over the years but haven't bought anything new for awhile... at least nothing super exciting. And I'm out of touch with the latest developments in kayak world... new companies, new models, etc.

I already have a couple of SOT's, a 17' sea kayak I'm happy with, two hybrid kayaks (Jackson Rogue & WaveSport Ethos), and a rec kayak that has a huge cockpit.

I won't be buying until this fall or next spring, but I need something to keep me motivated. So... here's my criteria:

1) I mostly do rec paddling so I want another rec kayak that's a bit faster and will fit me as I continue to drop poundage... figure goal weight of 140 lbs, height 5'6".
2) Max length 14.5'.
3) Min length 12.5"
4) Max beam 24.5"
5) Lightweight would be nice
6) I don't have any particular budget constraints

Thoughts? (Thanks for playing.)
Polly E.


But I just want to hear about what YOU like, or what you would if you were constrained by my given criteria.

Ok done. :slight_smile:

Swift Saranac 14
Sounds like you would like a Swift Saranac 14. Fourteen feet long, 23.5 inches wide, weight somewhere in the 30’s depending on lay-up.

Something different
What about a Spitfire from Placid Boatworks. With the low seat option and a double blade you have a kayak with a open top.


Price range?

– Last Updated: Jan-27-16 6:05 AM EST –

Being that there's no particular budget and at the 14' max. length

Lincoln Chebeague in carbon - 14' @32lbs
Venture Islay LV - 13'9" @51bs.

See you on the water,
The River Connection, Inc.
Hyde Park, NY

Seriously, I Recommend a Double Surfski
Not only for precaution and safety, but also for getting you up to speed real fast. You’ll be cruising at speeds that you can’t obtain by yourself. Of course, you’ll be working harder too, so easier to maintain your new weight goal, while having fun.

Or get yourself something real different like a 17 pound outrigger canoe? They are easy to remount, stable and fast. Much faster than any of your current kayaks.

You might want to have a look at a surfski

In the fitness area, you will get closer to a full body workout when you are using your legs as well as your upper body.

With an open, self-bailing cockpit you don’t have to spend a great deal of time worrying on self-rescue techniques, etc. You can just jump on the water and go.

Also has the added benefit of needing less gear to take along—so again, you’re on and off the water as fast as someone with a SUP would be.

They are lightweight, most weigh between 22-34 lbs and are very easy to carry.

There are plastic models that come in a bit cheaper, but the trade off is they will weigh a bit more.

Only a few come in at 14 feet. Most are at least 17. So that may dissuade you.

Mountain Paddler



Intriguing suggestion
Thanks, this is exactly the kind of feedback I’m looking for.

Not my style but thanks anyway
My profile says I owned one canoe, and I did, for about 4 months. Had a couple of… let us say, misadventures in it (one in April which resulted in pneumonia for moi). I think I’m done with canoes. No offense to those who enjoy them.

Price range
I doubt I’ll get anything I really want under about $1,500 (if I buy new, anyway).

I’d be willing to go $3,000 or so for something that really “floats my boat” (pun intended).

Canoes don’t like me
but the double SS idea is interesting. I’ll have to cogitate on that.


Two surfski votes. Interesting.

I could probably do that if I reconfigured my kayak storage system in the garage… set up some kind of hanging system that goes diagonally instead of being parallel to the length or width of the garage. I can barely fit my 17’ sea kayak in there and I think of surfskis as being much longer.

Something to think about…

I checked it out… NICE!
I’d probably go with the Hybrid or Kevlar. What do you recommend?

Mine is the Kevlar layup
The hybrid is obviously a bit heavier, and options like the skeg and the Sunburst deck color will add more weight, but the hybrid base price is a bit lower. I don’t think you’d be able to tell the difference in the way they paddle. I love the handling of the Saranac; it feels like it was made for me. I do have the skeg but have found that I need it only occasionally.

Good luck with your endeavor; it’s nice to have additional incentive in reaching your goal. Two and a half years ago I had a stroke which weakened my left side and screwed up my balance. Wasn’t sure if I’d be paddling again. My husband, bless his heart, suggested I order a lightweight canoe that had caught my eye, a Placid Boatworks SpitFire (see below), so I did. By the time spring rolled around, I was back on the water without having to depend on anyone to help me load/unload my boat. Independence was of the essence. So now when I’m out alone, I take the canoe. When it’s the two of us, the kayak goes along.

Check out a sup
if you want all body fitness. Even for a casual user, you’re going to get a good fun workout, much more fun than going to the gym. They’re also fairly inexpensive, light, easy to store and transport. You won’t go as far and fast as a boat, but the view is hard to beat, and you’ll work your core legs and balance without even being aware of it. Worth at least trying.

Don’t Rule out
The Placid BoatWorks Spitfire(20lbs). It’s a pack canoe which essentially is an undecked kayak. It’s a fast and fun boat that can run with 14’ and 15’ kayaks. I speak from experience an I own one. As previously mentioned the Swift Saranac 14’ is another good choice, it tips the scales at 36lbs with a skeg. I have one of these also.

Second that
I know several women who have gotten to be great SUP paddlers in the last few years and really gotten in good shape. I own lots of kayaks, a canoe and SUP, and SUP is the easiest to just throw the thing in the car and go down and paddle or surf for a couple of hours, lots better work out than kayak paddling, uses more muscles, and you must balance and work harder at technique.

something really different!

A 14’ recreational surfski.



Why not?

Shiraz and I are in the same boat(s)!

If it Was Me

– Last Updated: Jan-28-16 4:18 PM EST –

"Super exciting." "No particular budget constraints."

I'd have a beautiful boat made just for me.

Maybe one of these: