Mainstream Kingfisher kayak for

fishing, any comments about it? I’ve been looking at the Kingfisher lately. Looks stable and roomy, fairly well made. Best of all, its half the cost of a WS Tarpon 120 or most of the Ocean Kayak yaks that are good for fishing. I’ve heard its slow in comparison to the others, but how much so? Is it difficult to paddle, steer? I fish mainly lakes, will seldom paddle more than an hour or so from the put-in. The two lakes I primarily fish are less than 1,000 acres. The other two, over 14,000. Usually quarry is bluegill, channel catfish, and bass.

Quote from owner
"Spins around like the Mad Hatter’s Teacups at Disneyworld."

Two fellows I occaisionally fish with have kingfishers & neither of them think very highly of them. We fish mostly on slow freshwater rivers and both complain of poor tracking.

mainstream kayak
I own a mainstream , I fish flats and freshwater creeks with this being the bulk of experience I have found the mainstream to be an exceptional first buy kayak it has allowed me to learn and enjoy the kayak experience.

Also it is very stable and quite I have landed reds in excess of 32in. in water about 6in. as for fresh water i have fished creeks with good flow and it does well have landed 12 fish over 10 pounds and 3 over 11 this past season and I relate this back to the quite and sleek Mainstream. All the amenities were a plus for a kayak newbie.

So good luck buy one save money learn as much as you can with this model and purchase your next upgrade with confidence and experience.

GISSUPER out !!!


Here ya go…

As I understand things it’s an acceptable entry level boat. Its biggest selling point is price. If you really fall in love with the sport you’ll probably end up wanting a faster, better boat. Next thing you know, you’ll have two boats, then three, then seven like me.

I know two people who bought them as a first boat. Both have upgraded.

That is a saying that you hear often, “you get what you pay for”.

well, I now regret it, but…
I own a mainstream, (one of several boats) and my attraction to it was the price. I did not paddle the boat first, and now wish that I had. It is okay on the river, provided that the wind assists me. If I’m fightning the wind, the boat tracks badly. It is somewhat of a barge in most circumstances.

On the plus side, it is easily customized, with several points for mounting accessories. I wish it had a hatch in the well in front, but otherwise, its arranged nicely.

did you buy it
I was reading your post this morning along with the replies you got. I just bought one but have not had it in the water yet. Is you first impression good?

My daughter and her husband bought Mainstream Kingfishers and he does well in his but hers leaked badly. She exchanged it and the replacement leaked worse. She returned it and got a Pheonix 120. The leak problem was in the scuppers. Open the hatch in good light, stick your head in and check the scuppers. The scupper tubes were very thin and spotty on their boats. The rotomolding process did not put enough plastic on the scupper tubes. Neither had trouble with tracking.

I didn’t buy the Kingfisher. Instead,
I found a used Old Town Loon 138, got it for $300. Its been a great kayak, though on the heavy side and has to be loaded on my truck more like a canoe…get under the cockpit and lift it up by the gunnels, shove forward. As for the Mainstream, its not a bad first kayak for fishing. If you want to try fishing beyond the surf breakers, its great for getting through the surf and back in. But, it doesn’t track the best and, with the width, is not the fastest boat at there. That said, it will do the job, its floatation and carry you to the fish. Now, I’m pining for a Hobie Quest.

had a Kingfish
I had a Kingfish and upgraded to a Liquid Logic Manta Ray last year. The Kingfish was OK…the Manta Ray is Way Better. The Mainstream boat doesn’t have much glide and tracks poorly.

On the other side, we were out yesterday and my son was driving the old Kingfish. He had to paddle a little harder to keep up with me when we were going fast. At times, he was paddling from his knees and standing up on it. Last year, his girlfriend backed her car into the boat and pushed it through the garage wall…no damage.

Overall, I think the Kingfish is a good place to start at a good price point…but check out that Manta Ray!

Mainstream is no longer. Confluence
appears to have closed its doors, at least as Mainstream.

Hobie Quest
jerlfletcher, The last time I was in the sporting goods store they had a Hobie Quest in there. It looked very good, but I’ve not heard much about that one. The price was somewhere just under $1000 and it came with a rudder. it looked somewhat narrow to me compared to others. Have you found it to be as stable as some of the others?

The Quest if very stable. Its a well
done kayak, set up nicely for fishing. If the Quest you saw was the one that comes with the cart, cooler, and paddle, its not a bad deal, though you may want to replace the paddle with a carbon shaft paddle at some point…the aluminum shaft paddle is about a $0 paddle, it does well, but carbon shaft is lighter, all carbon even lighter still. Its a stable kayak and turns ok. Hobie,as in most everything it does, has done a nice job with the kayak. To me Hobie kayaks are sorta like Honda’s. Well done, maybe not the fastest ride, but innovative and built to last. The Quest remains on my short list of SOT’s for my style of fishing, along with the Manta Ray. The Ride has fallen out of favor, from what I’m hearing, it can be a wet ride. But, I’m heavier than you.

Hobie Quest
jerlfletcher, the Quest I saw had a dudder and a paddle. It seems like I remember it having a cart, but didn’t see a cooler.

If it has a rudder, good deal at that
price. Hobie may vary options on the package. The aluminum paddle is about a $50 one, not $0…typo. It could be worth more, but under $100.

Hobie Quest
jerlfletcher, thks again. From what prices I’ve seen on the net, the store I told you about doesn’t seem to have bed prices for around here. I am sure I could beat the price on the net, but I’d rather have that persoanl touch from someone I could get back with easily. I will try to get some prices on some other Yaks and you can tell me if they are fairly good prices. I haven’t seen many Yaks locally. I do see some at a local sporting goods store near me, but they are headed to the beach, about an hour aways form me. That store only has the Pelican Yaks.