Kids Kayaks: WS Piccolo vs WS Tsunami SP

I have two children (6/45lbs & 12/75lbs) who are interested in paddling. I already have a Carolina XS, but now that my 6 year old wants to paddle more frequently, I am looking for a different boat for my 12 year old. I was originally looking at the Wilderness Systems Piccolo (discontinued, but available) which has garnered years of great reviews, but have been intrigued by Wilderness Systems new entry, the Tsunami SP, a relatively unproven product. We paddle the protected bays and harbors of Long Island’s North Shore, but would like to get my 12 year old (and eventually both) out in the Long Island Sound with me in my Q700x. Any thoughts on which WS vessel would be best?

updated replacement for the Pic.

safer, more effecient, comfy.

decklines, 2 bulkheads, better seat, backstrap, etc.

we spent over a year and half dialing in the SP and it REALLY works well.


Tsunami SP
It shouldn’t even be a consideration because the Tsunami is a much, much better design than the Piccolo.

I would give you my reviews of the SP and Piccolo but at 6’2" 175lbs I am well outside of the intended audience. Although the Piccolo does make a better squirt boat than the SP ;).

5’10" and 175 here and I have paddled 'em both…alot.

You’re right the Pic is a better squirt boat and the SP is a better surf boat. I have to pull the pegs all the way back and stand on the bulkhead but it works.



Can’t go wrong
with the Tsunami.

Tsunami 120SP
Best kids boat around as Flatpick notes due to bulkheads, better seat and padding, etc. At 6’2" I am too tall to sit in it though it has plenty of deck height so I am bummed about that.

Trouble is - my two kids share one…and now they each want their own!!! Argh…course, its my fault as I had Greenland paddles carved for each of them so brought it on myself.

Anyone out there looking to sell a used one?


kids boats
I bought the Carolina 120 for my 10 year old, should have went with the Tsunami for the fact that it has hatches and more importantly thigh braces. She’s been paddling her boat for a year now and wants to start rolling; looking for Tsunami sp…

Hey FatKid

Maybe we can get Steve to put in a good word to his boss so we can get a good deal on a pair of them…



my good word
would be to you.

go make good friends with your local dealer and turn into a GREAT customer. I gotta support the dealership model. if I was to throw ya a bone and you were to get a couple boats @ discount what’s the local dealer going to think of ME?



Say When
I’ve been thinking about buying my daughter a new kayak, and using the Carolina as a loner. None of her little friends paddle, but this could allow her bring friends out with us.:slight_smile:

how in the world
can a kayak that will take a 175lb paddler be ok for a 45lb-75lb paddler?


it’s a tight fit.


CD Raven?
No hit on wilderness Systems, but Current Designs makes good boats with the Raven being intended for kids and very small people.

make one
you could make a Pygmy Osprey13 that could weigh under 30lbs. It’ll have a similar displacement capacity as the Piccolo. I had a WS fiberglass Poquito for my girls who were similar sizes as yours. The 13’x22" Pygmy was big but they really didn’t paddle as much as they were towed around. The younger one learned to roll in the Pygmy four years after I made it when she weighed about 90lbs.

The biggest advantage will be the light weight.

I’d look around for one of these…too fine

it has a capacity of 180lbs
don’t eat a big breakfast and leave all of that great ‘kit’ behind.

Flatpick is there going to be an SP at the ECCKF? I want to squeeze into one and take it for a spin around the pond.

we’ll have at least one there maybe more.

fwiw- the SP’s weight capacity was based on me in the boat paddling comfortably and then loading it up with weight and putting a 100-lber in it.

so 100-lber with 80-lb of kit and you’re G2G.


THAT is the deal
$1200 for a composite kayak that weighs 26lbs?! That’s an incredible deal

Piccolo much better
We have had a Piccolo for 2 years for two boys, originally 10 (90 lbs) and 8 (70 lbs). It was stolen and replaced this year with a Tsunami SP. No comparison- the piccolo was fster, easier to turn and could be rolled with ease ( if so chosen). Piccolo handled well in whitewater and on flat lakes and rivers, as well as i level 2- mild level 3 whitewater (Lower end of Ottawa River). We will probably try to sell the tsunami and find another piccolo. It also handled very well in some strong headwinds, with 2-3 foot waves. Similar to what you might find in your situation. Piccolo also had more leg room, so my older son who is now 5’3" might outgrow the tsunami sooner.

Tsunami has hatches which might make it a better tripping kayak, but we always had a canoe to overload for gear with the piccolo. Another Kayak we like is the Seift Kiwassa LV. Similar to the Piccolo, but cannot afford new or find used