I’m test paddling this kayak tomorrow. Opinions please! You guys have been so helpful so far!
I’d hold out
till you can get something with a front bulkhead too if you want to do ocean paddling. Unless you are getting a really great deal on a used one.
It’s new, but a 2011 model and they’re getting the 2012 models in in a few days.
I looked at others that I liked with stern and bow bulkheads but they were all over $1000. My range is maxed at $800.
I’m planning flat water almost exclusively, possibly with chop or boat wake if I can’t avoid it.
It’s better than what I started with
But without the front bulkhead if it gets swamped you’ll need to get ashore to get all the water out. Or you can get a float bag for the front, but that’s more money. It’s just that at $800 you are so close to stepping up another level, but on the other hand, I understand what it’s like to want your own boat to get on the water and at 24" wide it’s not a big rec barge. If you like the way it paddles … You got to make the final call. Like I tell everyone, remember it’s just your first boat. I’ve got 8.
That makes sense. I will test the 13 tomorrow, and ask if I can also test the one I liked with the front and back bulkheads. I’m not in a rush to get a kayak as I have a month left of summer here, and winter is warm too. Thanks for all the advice!
Old Town Cayuga 130
If you want a boat with front bulkhead, look at the Old Town. Essentially the same hull design as the Necky Manitou 13, but with a front bulkhead, for about $50 more at street price. Built by the same folks in the same factory. Old Town specs it as a touch wider than the Manitou, but they certainly appear to be the same beam when you look at them side by side.
I have a Man 13 that I bought for my kids to learn in when they were 6 and 8, and have been pleasantly surprised to find how well it paddles even for bigger people (I put my 6 foot, 220 pound brother in law in it, and he fit fine). I replaced the foam block in the nose with an floatation bag, as they sometimes paddle with me in deep water, and I wanted the extra buoyancy, in case.
for a few months and ended up selling it. It has great reviews like most kayaks but it was not as quick as I had hoped on flat water and wasn’t maneuverable enough for the narrow rivers I paddle most. It’s a nice design and fairly light weight but the hull felt pretty fragile and I didn’t want to keep it as my main boat for the rocky river.
I ended up with a Prijon Capri instead. The Capri is light, quick and cost me about half of what the Manitou 13 sold for so it’s my main river running boat these days. It uses the same bow flotation that I used with the Manitou. Test as many kayaks as you can.
I have one and it performs very well in a variety of conditions.
Getting close to buying
Thanks for all the opinions so far! I can’t wait to try it out tomorrow.
2nd the Cayuga
My first boat was also a Cayuga 130. Front & rear bulkheads were a big seller with me, and I’ve been quite happy with it. I got mine end-of-season for $600 from a Sportsman’s Warehouse.
Either way, have fun! The excitement of a new boat, especially your first boat, is hard to beat.
Old Town Vashon 130 & 146…
The Old Town Vashon is I believe the same boat as the already-mentioned OT Cayuga, and I understand it has the front & rear bulkheads (but check in-person to be certain).
It just seems to be the REI version of the boat, and thus is considerably cheaper somehow... $750@REI currently.
REI is also selling the Old Town Vashon 146 w/Rudder for $899, again, front & rear bulkheads AFAIK. If you like the boat and can stretch the budget ever so slightly, that seems like a very good deal for what you're getting.
/Maybe the prices are good 'cuz they're 2011 models on closeout and will be gone soon? Dunno.
Great, thanks for the info. This place had alot of Old Town kayaks in stock, so I will also look at those today. Maybe I can demo one too. I do want the two bulkheads, as long as I can afford it!
does indeed have dual bulkheads, and other than the logo it’s clearly a Necky boat. one of our paddling friends picked one up $100 off at REI
what does tue front bulkhead do?
Is it for going over waves in rough seas?
The front bulkhead adds a bouyancy chamber to the front of the boat