I'm an experienced kayaker. I want to get into kayak fishing for northern pike, walleye and perch on Western Canadian lakes.
I'm looking at buying a Liquid Logic Manta Ray 14, like this one.
I'm a big guy, 6'+, 200 pounds. When I don't use it for fishing, I'll play in the waves. I'm hoping my son can sit behind me on it when he gets older, say 2-3 years old.
Am I on the right track ? Are there better models ?
The Manta Ray is a good kayak.
There are many others that may fit the bill for you. Malibu has what’s called a Gator Hatch, essentially a hatch cover that also is a seat for a small child:
One of the Malibu’s with the Gator hatch might fit better with your desire to take you child along, especially at an early age. Its better to have a small child in front of you when paddling than behind. The tank well is the best option for carrying a child on the Manta Ray and that’s behind you.
I assume the waters in your area are pretty chilly year around. In looking for a ait on top kayak, you may want to consider one that does not take on water through the scupper holes. Even then, you probably will want to put in scupper plugs.
You may want to look at sit insides also. They are much drier boats than most sit on tops, important if the water in your area remains chilly.
Thanks for the reply.
The water (and air) is chilly here in the spring and summer. I suspect I would be warmer padding a SOT than riding in an aluminum power fishing boat... :)
I've paddled several SIKs. They are great for touring, but I wouldn't use them for fishing. I'll use my SOT for general kayaking as well, taking my son along. I can't see how one could take a child in a SIK.
I just saw the forward child seat on the Malibu. Interesting.
Sit insides can make very good fishing
kayaks, but do lack the ease of moving around and getting to gear. If you are going to fish from a SOT in cold waters, you may want to invest in a dry suit, or at the very least, wear a wet suit. Overall, a sit inside like a Old Town Loon or Dirigo, the Wilderness Systems Pungo or Pamlico, Dagger Blackwater, or Perception Acadia is going to provide you with a very stable fishing platform. Personally, I believe the sit insides to be more stable than a SOT.
If the object is to carry your son, then a tandem version of one of those will do the job. While young, any recreational kayak with a large opening will do the job. At 2 or 3, its doubtful you are going to want to be out with him for very long at a stretch, the purpose then is just to get him used to the kayak and being on the water.
“If you are going to fish from a SOT in cold waters, you may want to invest in a dry suit, or at the very least, wear a wet suit.”
I sail and windsurf up here, so I know about the cold. It isn’t that cold up here ! Our lakes warm up pretty quick in the summer. Much warmer than the ocean in Oregon, for example.
“Overall, a sit inside like a Old Town Loon or Dirigo, the Wilderness Systems Pungo or Pamlico, Dagger Blackwater, or Perception Acadia is going to provide you with a very stable fishing platform.”
I agree with that. But you wouldn’t have near the versatility and storage. I want to be able to dangle my feet in the water and be able to sit side saddle. I want a SOT for fishing.
“Personally, I believe the sit insides to be more stable than a SOT.”
“If the object is to carry your son, then a tandem version of one of those will do the job. While young, any recreational kayak with a large opening will do the job.”
I’m worried, or at least my wife is worried about him getting trapped in a SINK should it roll. Nothing to worry about with a SOT.
“At 2 or 3, its doubtful you are going to want to be out with him for very long at a stretch, the purpose then is just to get him used to the kayak and being on the water.”
Yes. I won’t take him fishing at that age. Maybe do some short daytrips, trips to other beaches, etc. Mom can come on a separate kayak and Jr and I can go on my SOT fishing kayak.
Its difficult to get trapped in a big
recreational cockpit. As for storage, my Loon 138 has as much as I need…carry 4-6 rods…usually 4 in the water, good size cooler, bait bucket, tackle box, kayak cart, and asundry other items. Its all in how you rig it.
I got a Manta Ray 14 last month, I Love It. I went to a kayak demo day expecting to find a Yak I’d like better. I didn’t I paddled a wilderness Ride, a Perception Search and a Tarpon 14. The Manta Ray is my favorite.It takes less water in through the scuppers, tracks better & seems to be a little faster. Stability is better than the Search, about the same as the Ride. A woman at the Wilderness Systems tent told me I should upgrade to a Tarpon or Ride, Sorry I believe it would be a downgrade. I was initially going to get the 12 footer but got a good deal on the 14. I’d suggest you try a few out before you purchase one. But I don’t think you’d be disappointed with a Manta Ray.
Dress for the water
It does not matter if you are in a SOT or a SINK, you still need to dress for the water. If you do flip a boat, the large cockpit rec boats will hold a very large volume of water and are too hard to rescue in a timely manner. That means more time in the water.
Did you install the flush mount
Kayaking and Kids
I have a Liquid Logic Manta Ray 14 and have tried the Wilderness Systems, Perception, and Malibu SOTs. They are all good boats, but at 6’2" and 300 pounds, the Manta Ray gives me the best overall performance. Last season, I would take my 4-year-old grandson out with me. He rode in the tankwell with no problems. He had his own paddle and was seated on a foam pad in the very back facing forward so he could help. I found that his attention span was short, so we would put in to shore and let him scamper around while I followed in the kayak. He had a great time and told all the kids at preschool about how he kayaked.
SOT or SitInside? I would want the SOT for carrying my grandson. If the SOT goes over, its still floating and ready to be tipped back over. That lets me worry about the child. If the SitInside goes over, we have a boat half-full of water to deal with too.
I have a MR 14, and weight over 300 lbs. I also like My Prowler 13 just as much. Both boats are good boats.
Manta Ray 12
fishinfoflounder, how did you like the Manta Ray 12? Is the Manta Ray 14 as maneuverable as the 12? Is the stability of the manta Ray 14 much better then the 12? Compared to the WS 135 Ride, how does the Manta Ray 14 and 12 compare to it?