no Chatham 17 reviews?

anyone out there own the above kayak? i’ve called all over Canada and retailers from east to west seem to be avioding ordering the Chathams for stock.

at 6’5" i can’t be bothered even looking at the 16 since i probably couldn’t get in it. does anyone have anything to say about these boats in either glass or plastic? do you thing long legs and big feet would fit?


very nice kayak…
I don’t own the Chatham 17 but I have demoed it and it was the first poly kayak that really tempted me. It isn’t the fastest kayak in the world but has a decent cruising speed. It responds nicely to edging and rolls like a dream (first sea kayak that I ever hand rolled). The whitewater thigh braces and backband are excellent and the low volume british/greenland lines makes the Chatham a great boat for playing in the rough stuff. However, with that said, I think you would be hard pressed to fit into the kayak comfortably with big feet and at 6’5". I’m only 5’8" and it felt nice to me. I would probably recommend for you to sit in a Chatham 18 if the 17 turns out to be too tight.

REI carries them

– Last Updated: Jun-18-05 7:06 AM EST –

here in the states. Also a dealer in Annesville, CT. Here's a couple links.

Good luck in your quest.

fit is the problem for many
The boat may be fine, but it does not seem to fit people much if any more well than the 16 did. Perhaps it is the combination of low volume AND smaller cockpit width, or whatever.

As always make sure any boat fits well, a tiny bit too large can be worked with, too small and you hit the wall.

Chatham specs
In regards to big feet… that is where you will have a problem unless you are comfortable with maintaining a sidewise angle with your feet. The cockpit is 16 inches wide on the Chatham 17 and 15 inches wide on the 16&18. I have size 11+1/2 Chotas and did not have enough footroom to be comfortable for a long day on the water. At 5/10 215 LBS I found the overall fit to be excellent. I loved paddling the 17 but the foot room killed it for me. I was told the whole purpose of the 17 was to create a " more universal fit" with a 21 inch beam. The Chatham 16 is 22 inches wide but due to the 15 inch cockpit a lot of folks can`t fit in it comfortably. The 18 is what it is… a 20 inch wide low volume mass produced Greenland style kayak.