What should be my next Kayak for salt water bays if any

Ok folks need some advice, I have 2 kayaks a feel free lure 13.5 feet fishing Yak and a riot 14,5 touring open water kayak, been paddling about a year, the FF is barge but very stable and the riot was a great deal so I bought it, I am 54 5’7 and Pre covid maybe 185 , now who knows but my bet is closer to 200, what should be my next salt water open water kayak be? Was able to buy a shore home in NJ right on the Delaware Bay, so I only have to move my Yak down 12 steps and I am in the bay, the bay gets waves up to 5 feet maybe and I have marsh be hind me , which ZI have not explored yet , maybe when the bugs leave, what should I be looking at for my next yak, not looking to sell just add to the fleet. 98% will be in the bay or marsh , 2% in the ocean, comfort is important, do not see myself going for more than a day trip. TIA

Bays can get rough you won’t be out in 5’ bay chop.

New or used?

Your budget is?

River Connection in Hyde Park NY has sea kayaks. He has new and some on consignment at times.

Then you need to decide poly, thermoformed, or composite.

Used you could get a Current Designs Solstice 17’-8" I see some around you area.

Then do you want a rudder or skeg?

First is your dollar decision.

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Wide stable hulls become unstable in rough water. Their hull tried to stay parallel with the water. You don’t want to be parallel with a wave face.

You could try the Epics or the QCC 700 if you don’t mine rudders…

It sounds as though you are thoroughly afflicted with the paddling bug since you enjoy paddling, have 2 kayaks already, and do not plan to shed either of them but to add to your fleet. Welcome to our misguided & somewhat irrational group!

I am going to change the direction of your question a bit. Since you already enjoy paddling and want to do more and venture into more distant and potentially more dangerous waters (because you are further from shore & rescue in event of flipping), it is time for you to seek out open water kayak lessons. If you have never taken a lesson at this point, it is time to learn & build upon the basics taught in the ACA Introduction to Kayaking & Essentials of Kayak Touring courses. Get your skills refined and making the decision about which kayak to buy next will become easy as you will already be familiar with other kayaks as you meet other paddlers in your class(es).

@PaddleDog52 thanks for the reply, I would guess used but not opposed to buying new, budget would be around $1500 , Both of my laksa now have rudders so I would want at least a skeg, If used I would more than likely get more options but not sure if that is a good thing, I have been lucky with the last 2. I could use the 14.5 Riot so I am not needing to jump in at the first one I see. I will check out River Connection, hoping to find one closer to the shore house so maybe Delaware .

@grayhawk , no problems with rudders , both of mine have them know, what is a QCC 700? If I think of kayaks as cars I think I may be a Mazda person, not to common but does not need a lot of maintenance, if that makes sense.

@kayakhank , I agree I need some lessons esp on how to roll. The main issue is her sin NJ I am on the wrong side for kayaking or so they say, most of the instructors do ocean lessons and I guess they are swamped but it is on my list. The good thing is the Bay is more forgiving than the ocean but it is still a big body of water and needs to be respected.

QCC was a manufacturer back around 2000. The 700 was larger than the 600.The were well built and fast and compared well in performance to the Epic 18s. The sold them factory direct and not through dealers.
What’s left of them is owned by Current Designs but said to be out of production.
There are still some around…

New composite boats are 4 grand and more. I have driven 5+ hours one way to get want I wanted.

Don’t count on a bay being forgiving be at all.

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If it was me I’d look very closely at this boat:

I’d get a nice Greenland paddle then focus on getting skilled at rolling and bracing.

Maybe the smaller boat?

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@PaddleDog52 , 5 K is out of my budget and skill level I am sure, I doubt I would be in the price area for many years, but maybe someday … after the kids are out of college . My real goal would be to know what to buy w 5 K when and if that times comes, and that will take a lot of seat time and a little luck.

I paid 900 for the kayak above.

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How do you like your Riot Edge 14.5? Is that the right one, 14’6" and 22" wide? That looks like it would work well to learn to roll. Is there anything that you really like, or anything that you think you might like to improve upon from that kayak?

And that is what my next one will be like I hope, as far as price, maybe a sit on top open water one if it makes sense. I assume there will be a glut on the used market within 12 months. what is that one?

@CapeFear I have only been in it about half a dozen times , and yes that is the 22 wide one,coming from my feel free fishing kayak it does take some getting use to as far as getting in and out of, I have not used the rudder on it yet. The peddle adjustments are a little finicky compared to the FF and that is my only source of comparison. The seat is nowhere as comfortable but I expected that, the FF seat is like a Volvo car seat. I was surprised that I could not adjust the riot seat more but maybe I have to play around with it more. I think it will be a good first open water kayak for me, it runs pretty straight but I still have not felt truly comfortable in it yet, not sure if that is bc I am trying it in the bay or just coming from a much heavier and wider sot stable kayak. No buyer remorse and my kid loves it so it may end up being his next summer. Not sure how you tell if a kayak is good for rolling or not.

I saw a Viking Oxygen 570 at a shop while I was in Arkansas, it was 18 feet long but a sit on top vs a sit-in, the store said they would not sell it because everyone there wants a fishing kayak, it was a funky boat , I thought all sleek open water kayaks were sit-ins. Would have loved to test it out but was late for a work event.