I’m looking into getting a kayak for 3-4 day long trips is the san juan islands. The Riot Intrigue MKII looks perfect, except I can’t tell if it’s stable on ocean waves for crossings between islands.
I’m not worried about the boats max weight or storage because I’ll be paddling alone, maybe with a dog, or with another person on short trips with very little gear. I can’t find much info on the boat online other than some specs. Can anyone tell me if the Riot Intrigue MKII TX would be stable for sea kayaking or if it’s just for lakes? Any advice from someone experienced with the boat or with general sea kayak knowledge would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
Not familiar with the boat, just looked at the Riot webpage. Riot classifies it as a “Rec Kayak” which usually means large cockpit and no bulkheads. It does have a large cockpit and “halfskirt”? but the specs say it has bulkheads. Probably fine for calm days. The large skirt makes rolling unlikely and increases chances of getting swamped by waves. If you plan on paddling in the San Juan Islands alone I think this would not be your best choice. If you don’t have a lot of experience in paddling in the area I would suggest joining a guided paddle or overnight trip with a certified instructor who provides kayaks. That way you can get a better idea on what you would want when you buy.
Thanks for the response! That’s all I needed to know. I’ll go with one of my other options. I’ve got experience kayaking the area but never had to look into buying my own. The riot boat did seem strange. I wasn’t sure about what exactly “rec kayak” meant, even after looking online so thanks for that.
I have experience leading groups, but I have never gone alone. I’m excited, but it’s stressful preparing to go out there. I surely want to know I have the right boat. I’ll start slow and not go far. Any more advice would be appreciated!
You may want to check out an article available online at California Kayaker Magazine - South West's source for paddlesports information. PDF version (Yudu version doesn’t work any more) of issue #10, the article on basic types of kayaks. Talks about categories (such as recreational, sea kayak, sit on top, etc.), along with short summary of pros and cons.
And here is a page borrowed from the Basic Illustrated Sea Kayaking book that talks about the ACA level categorization of flat water and what type of vessel would be appropriate.
The Riot being a recreational kayak would be appropriate for Level I, and maybe for level II (but looking at the online specs for the boat, I don’t think it has enough flotation to do a deep water rescue, so maybe just level I). San Juan Islands regularly is Level III-IV.
Also keep in mind that the waters around the San Juans are cold. Here is a site that gives water temps for some areas, including current and predicted readings for Friday harbor on San Juan Island:
The warmest year round is 53F. You wouldn’t have much time in the water before you’d become incapacitated if you were to flip and were just wearing shorts and t-shirt. The few times I have paddled that area, I have always worn a wet suit (3 mm farmer john style, with paddle jacket) or dry suit.