Selecting a Boat

Yesterday I went out and test road a few boats based on research that I have been doing on the internet and discussions with local store reps. The 3 boats I tested were a Tarpon 140, Manta Ray 14, Ultimate Solo 14.5.

After testing each boat, I paddled around my dads Pungo 140 and I thought I had made up my mind on the Tarpon 140. There are so many pros and cons of each boat it is hard to make a decision but I really like the way the Tarpon tracked and I found it easier to paddle since my paddle was not hitting the side of the boat during each stroke.

I then picked up the family and headed to the local retailer to buy the Tarpon 140. Well, when I got to the store I discovered the Magic 12 and Magic 140 Tandem. Since I was so interested with the Magics, I scheduled another demo for next weekend to try them out.

If anyone else has or has paddled these boats, please give me your pros and cons of each. Here is what I am thinking about both.

Tarpon- Pros: speed, open cockpit (low enough were I dont hit the sides when I paddle), dry hatches. Cons: Foot pegs

Magic - Pros: seat, plug and play, Tandem to solo conversion, foot pegs. Cons: no dry storage

In my mind right now, if the Magic tracks as well and is as fast as the Tarpon, I think that is the boat for me. From doing research, I know that it is a heavier boat but I think I should not have a problem getting it on top of my Toyota Corolla.


your call
go paddle it and then decide.


Some things to think about …

– Last Updated: Jul-26-09 12:36 PM EST –

When you start thinking about carrying your boat to put ins,an extra 15 pounds becomes a big deal, the Native boats are heavy.

The hull shape is basically a canoe. You can buy a high quality used canoe for less money. A real kayak will give you the ability to paddle faster, to explore rough water in wind and waves.

The high hull sides and flat bottom will feel very stable and comfortable if you you have never paddled a kayak, but the boat will not do well in waves and rough water.

Plug and Play ... Kayaking is a simple means of transportation the more junk you put in your boat the more money you spend, the more time you spend fiddling with gear. If you are going to use it for fishing, go light you will have more fun, if you are going to fill it with gear just buy a motorboat, there is no point in owning a kayak.

you want a lawn chair for paddling?


Boat Purchased
After testing out a Tarpon 140, Manta Ray 140, Ultimate Solo 14.5, Magic 12, and Magic Tandem 14.5, I purchased the Tarpon 140.

I was very disapointed in how slow the Magic was. It was a tank in comparison to the Tarpon. Magic Tandem was not a bad boat when paddling Tandem but I would not want to paddle it solo for an extended period.

I have taken my new Tarpon out a few times and I am super happy. Now its time to start rigging it up with fishing gear!

Info and Gear Source…

– Last Updated: Aug-05-09 10:12 AM EST –

So far, I've kept it to simple flushmount rod holders, thigh straps (for greater boat control), deck plate/hatch, strategically arranged (safety)perimeter lines and bungee cords.


First things
for me were an anchor and a couple of flush mount rod holders. I personally like the Scotty brand. Then the milk crate and furnishings, Finally an anchor Trolley Line.

Try West Marine, KFS and captdick for rigging supplies.


I just paddled one out in SC for the first time in a while and it IS a sweety!

good luck!