Lite SOT Suggestions

I am getting ready to purchase my first SOT. Since my husband lives on the golf course I need to load this puppy my self. The family dog and “stuff” will be going sometimes so I need some storage and room. I used an Ocean Scrambler yesterday which was ok but very sluggish. Use will be in back bays and creeks.

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Feathercraft Airline
Like an Uno or a Java.
i want one for surfing : )

Maybe actual weight isnt the issue
Maybe the cartopping and loading is the issue. There are some unique solutions in accessories section from a roller top to a rack that you load on the side of the car. If the setup time is minimal and the performance is adequate, that 33lb kayak seems like a great idea.

looks like it would work wonders for the sluggishness factor.

A ducky might be what the doctor ordered, but then again, perhaps not…

I was prepared to scoff -but a) I’ve paddled with duckies and on lite gunkholing type forays, and for this type of paddling most are “OK” -tho’ they DO tend to require more work in the wind, as their keels are far less defined -if defined at all -than other types; and b) this UNA has all the dimensions of a VERY quick boat and looks QUITE intriguing. The Java model doesn’t look too bad…but at 28" it is a tad wide, and might be sluggish and not carve quite so cleanly. But-it’ll probably ba an improvement on the Scrambler. (I know -I’ve got an XT, and it’s better, bit still no match for either Sally’s Scupper or my Pro).

But I’ll bet it’s going to cost at least triple what a good, tough plastic SOT will run new, if not more. And it will not be nearly as tough -down here, I’ve scraped through mangrove channels that I’d wonder about putting an investment like that into, and across sharp-edged coral rocks, fearing a puncture. (OTOH, I don’t take my 50# glass yak on that kind of trip, especially the rock beach!) But ducky toughness HAS greatly improved, as have their designs, over the pat decade, as witnessed by the Java and especially the UNA.

But you can get a good yak in a Scupper Classis (that is, IF you can find one) or a Scupper Pro or S-Pro TW like mine, used, for $350-500 or so. There’s one for sale down hete with boat, seat, PFD & paddle for five. I don’t think you’ll come close with a ducky, even used. Ditto for folding boats.

Well, you say, if you plastic yak’s so wonderful, what does it weigh…? Fifty-five-sixty pounds.

Whoa! you say, ain’t “no weigh”! But as Devo noted, sometimes it’s the WAY you load, and not just the “load”. I know several women who tote their boats atop their cars -they load up by using a bar extender and a therth, and lift one end at a time, and it works, so maybe it’s not the weight per se, but how you handle it.

About a ducky -another possible constraint: will you want to keep it inflated or will you be willing to run the inflate/deflate cycle each time you paddle… If that’s not a problem, you don’t envision rough areas or tough useage, and the cost doesn’t daunt you, maybe a ducky IS for you.

But if not, don’t despair -you, too, can load a plastic boat. There’s a ton of appropriate ones out ther for you in addition to the Scuppers -the Venus, Mars, and Caper, several from WS, some from Necky, some from Mainstyream, etc. Look left under the buyer’s guide for more infro.

ANd you can get carts to roll the boat from parking lot to put-in & back, too, so you needen’t carry it on land, either.

Any way you look at it, I’m sure you’ll find a boat you can use. ANd if you’re like an awful lot of us, you’ll graduate to a second boat -or even more. We started out with a tandem, but after it was stolen, got a single.

Then we got 4 more!

Look around, check things out, and look under classifieds here, and over at, an SOT-specialty kayaking website.

In no time you’ll be toting your boat -whatever you end up with! -back & forth as you

Paddle On!

-Frank in Miami

Try out a Caper
At just over 11 feet long, the Ocean Kayak Caper is a nice maneuverable, easy to paddle yak with decent speed. I tried one out at a lake about a month ago, and I was very impressed with it, and its lightweight at only 45 lbs, should be easy to load and unload. I have its biggest brother, the Prowler, and its a very nice paddling yak, but the Caper is quite capable and a lot of fun. I’m looking at buying one down the road. Good luck -

Malibu Pro Explorer
With the dog and “Stuff” coming along, let me reiterate what I said at the end of the post I left on your other thread. Look hard at the Malibu Pro Explorer.

With Fido along, you’ll want a bit more stability. The Pro Explorer is reputed to be one of the more stable kayaks on the water today. It has a tankwell for the dog, and a tremendous amount of internal storage, including a large bow hatch and easy access rectangular center hatch.



– Last Updated: Jul-12-04 1:32 AM EST –

Here's a link on dog friendly yaks...

If you thought the scrambler was sluggish just wait until you try several of the boats people have suggested here (e.g. Malibupro). Most short sit on tops are real dogs if you want to skim along on the water. If you want a faster boat you may have to go to 14' and about 65 lbs. Boats like Heritage Seadart, Tarpon, Ilsander Ventura etc etc. It's more just learning how to lift and transport (get yourself a pair of wheels). For a real fast boat you will start to hear from the shearwater fans and surfski crowd.

For a short/fast lightweight SOT Megakayaks in UK makes a glass sit on top that looks really cool...

Your dog will not fit on it however. Another short and fairly fast boat is the real "Wavewitch" made by Hunt Johnson in Hawaii. The Cobra Wave Witch is shorter and not as fast for flatwater paddling. This boat would be too small and tippy for a dog.

Here is a link to Hunt's web page check out his "wife?" paddling the 12' Wave Witch Horizon

Light kayaks
Might check out the Ocean Kayak Venus, specifically designed for woman and the Wilderness Systems boats.