I intend to purchase a Ultimate 14.5. Any helpful thoughts?
Nice boat for fishing. The only real
negatives I’ve heard have to do with wind problems…typical of open boats. Some who own them believe they need a rudder, but mainly for use in fishing, not tracking. Seems the boat can get blown around a bit when you stop paddling.
I don’t see the wind as being that much of an issue. Its only slightly more freeboard than most SOT kayaks. My Loon has a pretty low freeboard and there are times when the wind gets to it. I fish from a solo canoe in warmer months and, while I notice more wind than with my kayak, its not much of a problem. My issue with the Ultimate and Magic is one of weight. They are a bit heavy for my taste for 12 to 15 ft canoes. Don’t care how much people and Native watercraft want to call them kayaks, they are canoes to me.
Go to texaskayakfisherman.com, register, and do a search for the boat. Its been discussed extensively of late. kayakfishingstuff.com should also have a lot of information about the Ultimates.
The Native boats are canoe/kayak hybrids. For the fisherman, I see them as better than kayaks, not as good as canoes. The main objections I have to them are the weight (55 pounds or so for a solo craft, compared to a lot of solo canoes that are 35-45 pounds in Royalex), and I have this aversion to gimmicky molded-in set-ups, which add the weight. This may not be important to you, but I carry up to five rods and two tackle containers when fishing from my solo canoe, and I fish small, brushy streams. With my canoe, I can stow all the rods with tips inside the gunwales where they won’t stick out and get snagged on brush. I don’t see how you could do that with the Native. And I want to be able to put stuff where I want it, and not have to work around the molded in shape of the bottom of the craft.
Advantages? People seem to like the seats. And supposedly you can stand up and fish from them–they have plenty of initial stability. That’s about the only advantages I think they have over a decent solo canoe.
Unless you are a really big guy why the 14.5? My husband and brother own the 12 foot Native Ultimates with skegs and one is 200 lbs and the other is 235 and they love them. I’m only 5 ft 1 and the boat is too wide for me to paddle efficiently but wow-those seats are amazing! We are toying with the idea of getting the tandem when it comes out in the Tegris. As for weight Brian said his Ultimate with the seat out is around 45 lbs and easy to carry. I don’t think they can be beat for fishing and I’ll bet they will be very popular. We enjoy our sea kayaks but sold our canoe which we used for river trips and fishing. I’m fishing out of a Hurricane Santee Sport which works well for me cause I’m little and it’s all I can carry. Truth be told I catch more weeds, deck lines and anchor lines than fish since I’m just learning this sport but even so I love it. Wish I could get more of my gal pals into it!
Two reasons for buying the longer
boat, more room and better glide. It may have better tracking to boot. The smaller one will maneuver better, but if one paddles and fishes in waters that aren’t tight, the longer boat may work better. Unless I had a physical limitation that made it difficult to paddle or load the longer craft, or paddled and fished tight, winding creeks, I would go for the longer Ultimate.
12 foot has skeg
My guys tell me it tracks great with the skeg down but they have both had times when the skeg jammed. Easy to fix just like on our sea kayaks since it’s usually a stone or sand packed in the skeg box. I see the 14 foot solo (no skeg)coming out is 65 lbs-the tandem we are looking at is 71 lbs but the seats come out EZ taking about 13 lbs out of the loading weight. We are trying to find out if the tandem Ultimate will be produced in the super light Tegris-anyone know?
Skegs help, when they work. Don’t
care for lot of extra mechanical stuff, interferes with the spirit of adventure when they go afoul. Never found much use for skegs or rudders on my kayaks or canoes.
tegris sounds great and all but have you seen the price?the 12 foot tegris is 2k...thats over twice as much as the standard version..I think for the extra money I'd deal with the weight.Especialy with the tandem version cause you'd have someone there to help you load it...just my 2cents
I was interrested to in the new design.
but like you can see my name in that tread.to expensive for me.
if i had only one boat might get it…but it would be kind off a spare9for friends) to come wit me boat.
but yes it is a nice canoe/kayak style boat.
Have had my Native
Ultimate 12 for about a year now. It has been great!! Tracks well with skeg - even in some pretty hefty winds. I fish Wisconsin Lakes alot (put in about 50 days on water in '07) w/ some winds in the 25-30mph range and had very few problems. Even managed to boat a 36" northern w/o a net while blue gill fishing - tugging the Native around wore him out LOL. Had a serious back injury last March, but with the geat seat in the Native was able to paddle - have 4 other yaks that I could not paddle!!
As far as holding in the wind while fishing - I rigged mine so I could drop a small anchor front and back so positioning hasn’t been a problem
Only con - the paddle holder set-up is pretty rinky dink - they get bumped off in loading and unloading the boat - I added a couple of rivets to the track and that seem to have corrected the problem…
IMO the Ultimates are better than canoes. Seating is superior to anything stock or after market I’ve ever paddled. The tunnel hull affords greater stability as well as a narrower width than most canoes. They’re great for lakes, level I-II rivers and intracoastal marshes, creeks and sounds on milder days. With the 14.5, if you get a tandem you can take out both seats to lessen weight for loading, slide one up for solo or if you plan for only soloing there’s a solo of the 14.5 out now.
Let me know if you have any more specific questions.
solo 14.5 is only 100 less than the tandem cause they don’t give ya the second seat…I say plunk down the extra 100 you never know when that second seat will come in handy.They make great camp chairs too from what I hear.I think the 14.5 will be my next boat…I have been putting alotta heavy thinking into it…that usually gets me into trouble…wish they had more colors though…IMO blues the only nice color in the line up