w.s. epic

Hello all just got a wilderness systems epic not what i was looking for but the deal was to good to pass.have not paddled it yet.I will check it out tomarrow.Was looking at a legend and some other boats but i got this boat so cheap.I thought it would be a good boat to start in.Anybody paddling one of these?? What do you think?


can someone give me some feedback on thi boat???

what hapened to the epic?
W.S.discontinued the epic they say the cape horn replaces it. this seems like a higher volume boat? the tempest looks like more of a match to me.Would like to hear from people who have paddled the epic and these other boats(cape h. tempest)What do you think how does the epic compare??

Never paddled an Epic
My sister and brother’n law have cape horns. This site leads to much mine is better than yours. This one is better than that one. To put it into its proper perspective think about which car to buy. The ad agencies want you to make the correct decision. The bottom line is if it will get you to work and back, to there and here, it is fine. The same with boats. If it will allow you to get out onto the water and back, it is fine!

Now go paddle it and enjoy the water.

The shape of water and the human body haven’t changed but marketing requires “new, better, improved” in order to maintain market share.

So new models will show up regardless how good or bad the previous one was. I think there was a change of designers and management.

The epic is a nice boat. Enjoy it. Put the money you saved into instruction, immersion protection gear and gas.

The epic

– Last Updated: Dec-19-05 11:45 AM EST –

A friend of mine had one.

I don't think LeeG's "new, better, improved" exactly explains why WS discontinued the boat. Rather, the boat was introduced as the market for that style of boat (Pacific NW "baidarka")declined.

"Years ago" the style was for large-volumed "expedition" boats that could carry a lot of stuff. Now, boats "tend" to be shorter with less volume. This change is due, in part, to people realizing they never go on expeditions and so, don't need to paddle a lot of empty boat around.

Also, like other manufacturers, WS figured out that having the same boat in a range of lengths was easier to market and less confusing to prospective buyers.

The Epic is concidered to be reasonably fast. It's about 18 feet long and has lots of volume (I know one outfitter that likes them for camping trips). Concidering how much money goes into getting a boat into the "show rooms", I'd be surprized that any boat you could buy would ever be "bad".

Cape Horn, Tempest, Epic

Cape Horn: wider, more stable. The hull of the Cape Horn is rather flat. The first one was on the short side. These characteristics place the boat as somewhat of a transitional boat between a recreational kayak and a “true” sea kayak. Should be a decent and capable boat (I’ve never paddled it.) I suspect it was designed as a “detuned” Storm/Squall (all of them designed by Thiekken, I think).

The Tempest is WS “brit” style kayak (like Necky’s Chatham). This boat is designed to be edged and will feel a bit more “twitchy” than the Cape Horn (the Tempest has lower primary stability). It should have a good mix of tracking and manueverablity and speed. I don’t think the volume is much greater than the Cape Horn.

The Epic has more water line than a 18 foot Tempest and a fairly round hull (so it has relatively low primary stability). It does respond to edging but it is designed to go straight. The design of this boat is related to the CD Soltice and Necky Arluk: long and high volumen Pacific NW “baidarkas”. It has the largest volume of the three boats.

I still say it’s fashion and marketing for consumer items and not any real improvement over the previous model. If folks don’t know they don’t need 80lb high volume ruddered kayaks go go four miles it sure isn’t the manufacturers job to tell them.

I’m confused…

– Last Updated: Dec-19-05 4:17 PM EST –

I'm not sure what you are saying.

I think it is clear that WS did not discontinue the Epic because they had something "new, better, improved" to replace it. 1) The Epic was sold for a very short time (I think it may have been for one season, maybe two). Kayak mafacturers don't -plan- to sell models for such a short run. It costs too much to design, retool, market, warehouse, distribute boats for short runs to make any sense. 2) WS has -no- boat like the Epic for sale, let alone a "new, better, improved" version of it.

It's not that I doubt that manufacturers create new models without any "real improvement" over the prior models. It's just that that does not explain the situation with the Epic.

The Epic "failed" in the marketplace because people did not buy them in sufficient numbers to make sense to continue manufacturing it. It is my opinion that the main reason for this is that such larger boats are not what most people prefer to buy (for whatever reason). Note that just because it "failed" in the marketplace doesn't mean the Epic is a bad boat.

It certainly would not surprize me that WS says that the Cape Horn "replaces" the Epic because the Cape Horn is what they have to sell. But I don't think this is quite true because they are rather different boats.

Never paddled an Epic

I wonder if we are talking about the same epic by W.S. mine is 17 ft not 18 and is 22in wide and 13inches deep witch is not a high volume boat or is it? Seem to me this is low volume, Anyway i paddled it today and I realy liked the feel of the boat it seems to get along just fine.Paddled out a creek in to tamales bay which was blowing about 30 and all white caps surfed most of the way back lots of fun!!

Same boat (wrong on length)

– Last Updated: Dec-20-05 5:08 PM EST –

It looks like the length is 17'2''.

The WS Epic is a fine boat.

It has a fairly large volume for a sea kayak. Keep in mind that we're not talking about a huge range of values for volume.