Looking for a river kayak

Hi there-

I’m looking for recommendations for a “rock boat” - I have a glass Impex Montauk that I love for bigger water, but I fear taking it on any rivers. I feel I need a shorter recreational boat for these situations. Anyone got any suggestions?

Thanks -


Rec boat recommendation
Here’s a vote for the Wilderness Systems Pungo’s … I think the 10’ is too short, but the 120 and 140 are great river rec boats. Super comfortable seats, decent day-trip storage, reasonable tracking and glide … and tough.

river yak
I have a Prijon Calabria-14.5 ft. by 24.5". This is a good all around plastic boat for large type rivers. Decent manuverability and tracking and you can bang it into rocks and sleep easy. Not the fastest thing on the water, but does the job. Hope this helps.

River Kayak
12-14 ft…Plastic would probably be best. Vaughn Fulton

Depends on the river
I fish in limestone karst rivers with a lot of ledges, and require some tight turns. I recently purchased a Perception Approach and have been very pleased. It’s a recreational with some WW capability, is 10’, has a dry hatch (or as I call it a ‘mostly dry’ hatch), and is very comfortable even for someone with my 6’3" 230# frame.

I also have a Perception America that’s 13’4", is practically indestructible when it comes to rocks and such, but I don’t find it maneuverable enough any longer. It was a good starter boat, but it mostly only comes off the rack when I’m introducing someone to kayaking and think they’d like something that feels bombproof.

Dagger Blackwaters are nice too. I’ve paddled the 10.5’s a few times and have been very pleased. The drop down skeg is handy. It’s a bit of a squeeze for my frame and I had to get out and stretch my legs and loosen up my hips every hour or so, but if you’re smaller than me could be a good choice. (or go with an 11.5 or 12.5 model)

Good luck. There’s a plenty plastic rec boats out there suitable for mild rivers that are a lot of fun to paddle.

  • Big D

Pungo 120
My husband likes his Pungo 120–short enough to maneuver in smaller rivers yet tracks straight. He’s also 6’7" tall, and very comfortable getting in and out of the large cockpit. He was skeptical this spring about getting a kayak at all until he realized he’d be able to access lots of great birdwatching spots from a kayak.

Sarah–They don’t make a rock boat
but rocks love polyethylene.

I’d suggest a WS Pungo 120 but you didn’t give us much info.

We need some more details like age, vital statistics, marital status, wine preference