Pungo 140 or Dirigo 140???

I am a rookie and am purchasing my first kayak. I will be using it primarily in the mid atlantic area on lakes, resevoirs, and slow rivers for general enjoyment, fishing, and photography. I will occasionally take my young son with me for short outings - and coupled with the other purposes stated above - thought a good rec kayak with a larger cockpit would suit my needs. I seem to have narrowed my choices at this point to the Pungo 140 and Dirigo 140. Any thoughts you all might have on these would be much appreciated. THANKS in advance.

Flip a coin
Dirigo is a better fishing kayak, though the difference is insignificant.

Pungo or Dirigo
Yeah I agree. I fish out of a Dirigo(120) and love it but I’ve heard nothing but good things about the Pungo.

small opening
i was looking for a kayak that can take me and a small child and the only concern i had with the dirigo is the dashboard. it cuts into the vertical space where your legs and feet goes and it seems a little cramped to me.

with a child sitting in front of me, facing forward, my concern is that in the event of a capsize, our legs may get stuck in the cramped space and that may prevent a quick and clean exit.

it may not be true but that’s the concern i had. i ended up buying a sundance 14, which has worked out really, really well for me.

Reply: Pungo 140 or Dirigo 140??
I recently rented a Dirigo 12 for my hard-to-please wife while on vacation along the Gulf of Mexico. This was our first time in kayaks and she happily paddled for several hours, and I greatly enjoyed using an Otter tandem with my young son. It caused an obsession for us. I couldn’t find a Dirigo without a shipping hassle and I viewed the Pungo as being outside my newbie budget. For me, ease of transportation became another criterion so I started to look at shorter boats. I just bought the Wilderness Systems Pamlico. I understand its downside of no bulkhead and length but the price was reasonable, it has nice lines, and has the extra-large cockpit.

Old Town

– Last Updated: Feb-22-08 12:12 PM EST –

Adventure XL 139...

13'9" length (right in the length range you are looking at)

28 " beam (stable for fishing)

LARGE 17" x 43" cockpit to help (comfortably) include child or fishing gear

Front and rear bulkheads/hatches

Weighs 56 lbs Carry 350 lbs

Nice little rec boat for creeks, rivers, lakes

You will never Eskimo Roll this boat - but I can tell from your stated use that you wouldn't want to. I bought one for my sister 2 years ago and it has been a fun little boat - very family friendly and easy to paddle.

If he wants a kayak in the 14 ft range
WS no longer builds the Pam 140.

the Pamlico 140
is the same length as a pungo or dirigo 14

Recreational yaks
You may also want to look at hurricane kayaks for larger cockpits.

Pungo’s are perhaps the #1 selling recreational kayak and for good reason.

I am very patient and researched for close to a year and talked to 20 differant dealers and everything pointed me toward pungo.

I have the 120 in duralite and i’m very

pleased for its intended use.

not even close
There are 2 areas where the Dirigo will perform better than the Pungo:

  1. Extremely shallow water. Pungos don’t perform as well in water conditions less than 2’.

  2. Initial stability.

    The Pungo does everything else better. Tracking is about the same but I would give the nod to the Pung- on the flipside turning is a little better in the Dirigo.

    To me the Dirigo is more similar to the Pamlico. Not sure if it has a grey thingy in it though :slight_smile: .

Thanks to all who replied. Based on my own research and the great comments here I decided to go with the Pungo 140. If nothing else, should I stay with kayaking and decide to upgrade to more of a touring kayak I can always pass this boat along to my bride. I think this boat will be perfect for me and my intended use. Thanks to all again, this is a pretty great forum and I hope to take advantage of the smart folks here in the coming months…