Some questions

-- Last Updated: Apr-05-06 3:46 AM EST --

I'm looking for a new kayak. It would be primarily for working out in. The river i go to is dammed off and very calm (it's used by a local university for sculls). I would also like to use the kayak in lakes. Not much ocean around these parts.

Anyways, i was thinking something plastic and fast for around 1200 bucks. I dont mind buying a used kayak, but they are hard to come by in oklahoma. Oh, i'm pretty athletic and catch on quick so stability really isnt an issue. (5'11 175) i've been in a zydeco so anything would probably be better for working out in (moving fast for extended periods)

Also, has anyone been to the kayak store in Austin,TX? I'm thinking they could maybe help me too.

Thanks a lot, my friends!

K1 trainer
You sound like someone who’d enjoy a K1-trainer. Checkout something like the Nelo Razor, which is indefinitely cooler for flat water paddling than any sea kayak.

I doubt you’ll find a new K1 trainer for $1200 in the US(seems like racers are more expensive in the US than here in Europe?).


(Note to self: consider starting a business exporting 2nd hand racing kayaks to US)

If you really want a go-fast boat, consider a surfski:

Not much more expensive than what you quoted, and much faster once you get comfortable with it.

Nothing leaps to mind as a particularly fast plastic boat for flatwater, although a WS Tempest might be better than most. You’d be better off looking for something like a used QCC 700 or Epic 18.

thanks for the help guys.

i failed to mention i plan on maybe doing some paddling in the gulf around texas. i did some research and came up with a squamish by current designs. are these boats any good?? what are some comparable boats? it pretty much has the types of features i’m looking for. sorry i didnt clarify, and kinda acted like i was going to be racing.


Not fast
I rented a shiny new Squamish one day. It felt noticeably slower than the Squall I owned, and I’ve heard others say the same. It turned more easily.

It’s kind of a weird kayak, in that it is quite wide (23" beam) yet has a low deck. Somebody who needs the width might be cramped by the low deck.

I found the skeg to have virtually no effect.

Austin Kayak shop
Actually the place is called “Austin Outdoor Gear and Guidance” I bought a few kayaks from them. They have a nice selection, and they are nice folks.

I will be going down there for a family vacation this weekend on Lake Travis and plan on stopping by for some minicell foam.

sounds interesting
hmm that brings up some newbie questions.

At 5’11 175lb, would i likely fit in this kayak? i dont mind a tight squeeze, but i’m not for sure what size paddler this boat is made for.

How easy is it to learn to roll in this boat? Would the boat keep a quick learner content for a few years? Did you find your squall to be a good purchase?


ZoSo, that’s good to hear. I checked out their website, but wish they had some prices. O well, I plan on going down there sometime soon anyways.

Day paddles
The most widely-available plastic kayak I’d reccomend for day paddles would be the WS Tempest 165. It’d be snug for you, but you’d have fun with it. A VCP Avocet or Aquanaut RM would also work, but they’ll be harder to find a deal on.

Have you considered building a boat?

Ya gotta try the fit yourself
At only 5’2" and under 110 lbs, I can’t say for sure whether you’d fit the Squamish, though I think you could. You might not be comfortable, though (cramps, numbness).

I know someone who, at 6-ft plus and 185 lbs, always complained of numbness and pain while paddling his Capella. He stuffed himself into that boat. The pain and numbness cut short his paddling sessions. Not what you’d want for fitness paddling, or anything, actually.

Rolling ease I did not test out, and it might not apply to you anyway due to our size difference.

The Squall would fit you better due to its deck being about 2" taller. The guy I described above fit into it, though tightly. I learned to roll in it.

The Squall was an OK purchase in that it got me into a real sea kayak at a reasonable price. However, on the second day I owned it, I noticed the boat had a curve to the left. It got worse each year (I paddled it 3 years). It also had some other problems, none of them as bad as the banana hull. Obviously, I made do with it but I wouldn’t do that again, and I am leery of Current Designs now. The Squall did have good calm-water speed. Slow to accelerate but once moving, it was easy to maintain a decent cruising speed.

If the Squall is too small to be comfortable in but you demo it and like it, you should try its bigger sibling, the Storm.

I replaced it with a Tempest 165, which I love paddling. If only I had bought that for my first sea kayak…oh, well. Faster than the Squamish, similar to Squall’s speed but different. Easier to accelerate. MUCH better in wind and waves. If you are too big for this boat, try the Tempest 170.

I read somewhere that one of the Tempest designers (he posts here as Flatpick) is your height and weight, so you might want to e-mail him directly about suitability for your purposes. I think it’s a great boat but I’m not a racer.

Hope this helps!