I would like to buy an old town otter for fishing in small lakes. The only problem is when i search on this site most forums that come up are about children paddling an otter. I am 17 and around 5’7" (only going to be around 5’10") and still growing. I would like to know if i could paddle it comfortably. And also if anyone could tell me the difference between the otter and the otter xt
From the old town site “XT model adds an adjustable foot brace and paddle holder for even more versatility and better control.” Maximum capacity is 275 lbs
You can paddle an Otter
I’m six feet tall. My first boats were three Old Town Otters we bought from a local livery. Great little boats for puttering around or fishing. Easy to cartop or toss in the back of a truck. After four years of use, we sold ours for as much as we bought them for.
No Frills Kayak
Old Town’s basic entry level kayak. Best suited to children or very small adults that don’t expect much from the boat. Otters are cheap but you get what you pay for. Old Town kayaks are known for their tough hulls but are a bit heavy for some people. The Loon models are a step up in speed and tracking.
are good lil recreational kayaks. You’ll fit in one just fine, and it will give you a good starting point. The nice wide hull and open cockpit would be good for fishing. They are short so they lack what we call “tracking”, so keeping them moving in a straight line is more difficult and requires more energy.
How big are the bodies of water you’d want to fish on? As long as they are on the smaller side then the Otter will work out well for you. Go for the XT with the foot braces.
A similar boat you could check out is the Perception Prodigy. Also a basic entry level rec boat that would serve you well as a first time boat, and very affordable. It comes in a 10 and 12 foot model. The 12 footer will give you more capacity and a lil better tracking. If you look at the 10 footer look at the EXP it has a dry hatch, footbraces, and better seat.
Check that it has floatation
it certainly has no drain holes… These cheap kayaks often lack floatation which IMO is a mandatory safety item… Or they have it at one end…god forbid you need to do a boat over boat rescue…nigh impossible to heave one of these little cuties out of the water.
Best thing about them related to fishing
is the stability~difficult to dump. I agree with the poster above who said if you are just dinking around fishing, it will work. If you want to do a lot of paddling, it will be cumbersome.
They are real tippy
if you add an inch or two of water inside them. They wobble and weeble and nearly always turn over once you take on a noticeable amount of water. I find the sit on tops are better for fishing, check out Wilderness Systems.
they are ok
for fishing in small lakes, ponds etc---they are not a rough water kayak---my advice is don't go any further from shore in it than you would care to swim---also would invest in two floatation bags---one forward and one aft---these will keep the boat boyant enough when full of water for you to do a paddle float reentry and pump.
Why are you putting water in an Otter?
It seems the sit on top guys around here are always turtling, at least if you believe the hundred or so posts a year about turtling on one of the larger kayak fishing sites. The Otter is very stable in most conditions. Lots less expensive than a sit on top.
Otter Is Good
That was my first kayak. Even after several upgrades I kept for over 6 years, for friends’ use, until I found I had too many boats ad ot enough storage room. Now a little ol’ lady in white tennis shoes paddles it on Kershaw Creek.
I found it to be a stable, forgiving boat for paddling the creeks and rivers down here in eastern NC. I added footpegs and a paddle holder for 1/3 the retail cost. Never did add floatation as the FEW times I did flip it the foam molded into the fore and aft ends was sufficient. Might consider a sprayskirt for year-round paddling.
Tippy? Y’r kidding.
My sister and her husband have Otters, and trust me her husband is very talented at capsizing anything short of a large metal rowboat. He took a Swifty over one time in front of me by waving hi to someone on land.
He’s managed to go out into slight current with that Otter and hasn’t capsized yet, and since they paddle them with legs sticking out and doing the barcalounger thing there is no way the inside is dry.
I’m 6’2, #215, size 13 shoe. I bought the one I have as a “loaner” to introduce people to kayaking. Mine has foam in both ends, adj. footpegs and a built in drybag. I think the Crosslink 3 material will float on its own. It’s very stable and I have run class 2 creeks with it. Sometimes when the water is low, I use it instead of my canoe because I can maneuver between rock ledges that hang both ends of the canoe. Get a spray skirt to keep splash out and leave a sponge in the bottom for any drips that get in. Just keep in mind that an Otter isn’t a boat for large bodies of water or class 3 WW.
first boat was an Old Town Rush
which is basically the XT version. Still have it. great little boat. I invested 40 bucks in a large float bag in the back and a smaller one in front of the pegs. Even with them, the boat is going to ride very low in the water if you fill it up. without them, the crosslink plastic will float but the cockpit rim will be at water level so any attempt to get back in will promptly sink the boat under you. I used it for a few months as an exercise/fishing boat and loved it but got the bug and moved up to a Tempest 170 (yeah I know quite the jump…blame Grayhawk, greyak, ScupperPro Frank and others for that!)
Anyway, still a great little boat. I will not sell it as it is a perfect loaner for puddling around and getting people to feel comfortable in a boat that has a large cockpit, and is very stable.
In a lot of ways i can play whitewater with it too as I can spin it so quickly due to the flattish hull. I have rolled it but not something I would want to do a lot unless I did some serious outfitting
it is what it is. a great little entry level rec boat. I agree that you should stay close to shore and dress for immersion, keep float bags in them and invest in a decent pfd and paddle. If you do get the bug, it won’t be long before it becomes your loaner and you are in a larger and more performance oriented boat anyway. If you get the best pfd and paddle you can, you are ahead of the game when you do upgrade.
Another suggestion and a much
better fishing kayak, the Heritage Featherlite 9.5. Its a great little kayak. Those who have them love 'em. Lighter than the Otter, its probably the best small fishing sit inside kayak out there. For more money, an even better fishing kayak is the Malibu Mini-X sit on top. I’ve a 9.5 Necky Sky, another good small kayak. I used it to fish a 14,000 acre lake near my home. I do stay in he narrower portions of the lake, but its handled some fairly stiff waves and wind with no problem. But, I don’t push the limits.
Nothing cheap about the Otter. It’s perfect for what it’s designed for. It’s not for little kids or small adults. I’m 60 years old still have mine and love it. Not afraid to throw in back of truck before work and run to the river to fish for a couple of hours. It’s perfect for that. I’m 240 lbs. love the otter