Kids recreational kayaks

Any suggestions concerning recreational solo kayaks for small children (8 years old, 53 pounds, 50 inches tall) that would be suitable for class I or I+ rivers? Thanks.

Perception has a couple

– Last Updated: Jan-09-07 1:15 PM EST –

Acadia Scout

Carolina 12.0

Both would benefit from extra flotation.

Where are you located?

A sit-on-top makes capsizes and reentries much easier for everyone involved. The Ocean Kayak Kea might be a good option.

Perception and dagger
Both have a couple of good choices. the swifty,zydaco come to mind. the scout is another good pick. a good shop will help stear you in the right direction. consider something that they can do well with now, but have room for growth.

my kids
My kids paddle around in a Swifty and a Zydeco on our local lake. Both are very stable, but they are wide. They have a great time in them, and a visiting adult can use them as well, but if you want kids to be able to go any distance those choices are too wide. Of the 2, I’d prefer the Zydeco. For kids to have a chance at developing skills, there are better choices.

Perception Carolina 12
The Carolina 12 is a great kids boat. Most rec boats are short but WIDE, which makes them hard for youngsters to paddle. The Carolina 12 is scaled down in width with a small cockpit. Not a lot of features (no bulkheads…you’ll need airbags), but it’s also really inexpensive!

Current Designs Raven

– Last Updated: Jan-11-07 12:39 AM EST –

Another choice for a narrower kids kayak is the Current Designs Raven – a new boat for this year. There certainly are less expensive options, but if you’re looking for a “real” sea kayak with bulheads and hatches, this one fits the bill. It’s a fiberglass/kevlar hybrid that weighs 26 lbs. I got one for my daughter for Christmas:


Kids recreational kayaks
Thanks, folks, for your input. Have done quite a bit of research now and have decided to go with the Perception Acadia Scout 10.0. It’s about 25 pounds and is both narrow and low enough for small paddlers. After we try it out for a few months, I’ll write a report on how it performs.

Add some floatation
The Scout is a great choice and your child will have hours of fun creating happy memories in it – but I highly recommend that you add some floatation bags. If the boat capsizes, it’s pretty much impossible to empty it without towing it to shore. We tried doing a T-rescue with it and absolutely couldn’t.

Floatation bags will remove a lot of the volume (and the amount of water to be pumped out) and make the boat a lot easier to get back into in the event of a capsize.

I’ve got some pictures of my daughter in a Scout on this page (scroll down a little ways on the page – and there’s some more photos of the Scout towards the bottom of the page too):

Looking forward to hearing how your child makes out in the Scout.