Kayaking camping dilemma

After gathering my gear for the best part of a week, I’m about to embark on a two-night kayak outing on the Mississippi. Planning on taking my Stellar 15S, which I’ve paddled many times on the Big River. However, I’ve never paddled it loaded with gear. While my weight plus my gear is well below the 300 lb. capacity of the Stellar, I’m a little worried about any reduction in stability the loaded kayak will have. My other option is a 14-foot Eddyline Equinox, which has a 25-inch beam vs. the Stellar’s 21.6 and a 360 lb. capacity. When compared with the Stellar, the Eddyline is a clunker, but it’s solid and stable.
I’m guessing my payload, me included, will be 215 to 225 lbs.
I’m leaning toward the Stellar, simply because it’s faster and more fun. But still, I’d love to hear experienced opinions on the subject.

Often kayaks get more stable when loaded if loaded low. Don’t do much deck mounted heavy stuff. .

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The Stellar should feel more stable with your gear than it does without. Load the heaviest gear on the very bottom, as close to the center of the boat as possible, and it acts as stabilizing ballast. Remember to think about it as a teeter-totter, with the seat being the center of the teeter-totter. Weight at the front of the back hatch is much closer to the center than weight in the front hatch closest to your feet. So your tent poles and liquids at the bottom right behind the seat. The lightest stuff towards the ends and on top. If your kayak wants to turn into the wind, a little more weight transferred to the stern will correct this. If your kayak wants to turn downwind, a little more weight transferred to the bow will even it out.
Sounds like a lot of fun. Be safe and enjoy!

Thanks so much. Sounds logical. Will be a new paddling experience, nonetheless.

It is only an issue if you load so much gear you take the boat way over its weight capacity, so you are sinking well below its waterline. Most likely you will just find that you are no longer paddling a somewhat quick kayak, but instead a Mack truck. More time to overcome inertia to get up to speed and don’t stop unless you have to, because you will have to go thru all of that again.

From a seriously impaired over packer including in kayaks.

Your boat will settle down with gear in it, lowering the center of gravity.
Don’t overload it or it will start to feel like a submarine.