I am in need of guidance. My old yellow Perception killed my knees and butt…it must go. I want to do some whitewater (up to Class III) and flat water kayaking. I’m 5’6" and 140 lbs…a small guy! Help please in guiding me towards the right boat. My Eskimo roll back 3 decades ago was not consistent…a function of me and the size of the boat. Thanks…and wish me luck!
I doubt that you will find one boat that will handle class 3 Rapids and still be a decent flat water boat. I would strongly recommend you decide your primary need and buy a boat to fit that purpose. You will then have a perfect justification for a second specialized craft a year from now.
It always surprises me that requests like this never mention money. Boats run from a couple hundred to several thousand dollars. If you are very price sensitive the answer is different than if cost is less important.
Have you considered buying a couple of boats. I can’t think of many boats that I would want to use in white water that would be worth spit for flat water. I’m sure there are some who would have no problem with slamming their flat water poly boats around in the rocks, but I believe in the right tool for the job.
On the other hand, maybe something like a Jackson Journey would be of interest.
Returning after 30 yrs…
Both valid points…first money…not an issue, comfort and handling qualities YES…2nd: Why did I ask about a single boat…the Dagger Axis seemed to be addressing this need however, I’m a small guy and that beast is large enough to comfortably handle a 260 lb boater…that’s a BIG differential.
So, I ask again…best approach?
Dagger Alchemy S?
I have had my Alchemy in many class 3 rivers, when aggressively handled it can turn pretty quickly in active water. It is pretty comfortable in stock form, and an upgrade back band and seat modifications can make it all day comfortable.
For an entry level boat it does a lot of things very well.
Having said that, for nearly the same money you can buy 2 used boats that are more task specific, and do the task at hand better, and more comfortably.
We don’t know where you are, or what
flatwater and easy whitewater you want to paddle. I can’t even suggest a whitewater boat for you, even knowing your size and weight. And you’re going to have to go to a showroom to assess comfort, unless you’re experienced at outfitting like me.
And forget about the one boat solution. I bought a demo Necky touring boat for $550 and a very used Dagger Animas for $350. I seldom spend more than half price for a good boat. Be patient. Go to showrooms and look for comfort in touring and ww kayaks. If you don’t like a boat for any reason, whine loudly and the salesperson will back off. Don’t talk much about what you want to do and don’t accept one boat solutions.