What to buy

I am looking for a fairly short, light weight kayak just to paddle for fun and exercise. I am limited by my strength to pull it in and out of the water. I am thinking of a Cobra Escape, but does anyone have any other suggestions. Though I know anything I get will not be a burner, faster rather than slower is my preference.

Thank you

Pungo 120
How about the Pungo 120? Good all around rec kayak. Not a burner but fast enoguh.

helpful information
Where will you be paddling?

What’s your size/weight?

If faster rather than slower
is your preference, I would not be looking at such a wide kayak. Is there a reason you want a sit-on-top? If you are limited in strength because you are very small, than that is an awfully wide kayak for you. Will you be paddling with others and need to keep up with them? If you could give us more information about your size it would be helpful. A lot of people buy very wide kayaks at first because they feel very stable. Most very wide, short kayaks are slow and you spend a lot of energy trying to make them go in a straight line. You can get used to the tippiness of a narrower kayak very quickly. I do not know very much about sit-on-tops. If that is what you want, I suppose that is as good as any of them. Maybe others can help you in that regard.

$.01 on length…

– Last Updated: Apr-13-08 4:10 PM EST –

On hull length, I'd try to go longer(14'+). Hull length will usually offer more speed(if not deformed = fat), better tracking, and more secondary stability.
**EDIT: ..Right, you're talkin' kayaks...I think there are kayaks at 12' that work well, my bad.....have had canoes on the brain for last week.

Some info
A better place for information on sit on top kayaks is

www.sit-on-topkayaking.com forum.

If you are looking at Cobra Boats the Revision is a lot better for what you want to do, but it is it a bit heavier, it paddles pretty fast and you can use it on the Ocean and rivers.

For just getting out and paddling fast I wished I had a Hunt Johnson Wave Witch …

here’s a link …


It’s made out of fiberglass, very light and very fast for a 12.5 boat.


Length: 12’5" Beam: 24" Weight: 30 lbs. Recommended load: 250 lbs. max.

Price: $1590

there are still many shorter touring kayaks that can obtain decent speed. Check these,

-Perception Prodigy 12

-Perception Carolina 12

-Wilderness Systems Pungo 120

-Old Town Cayuga 130

-Necky Manitou 13

-Ocean Kayak Prowler

-Impex Hesper

-prijon Capri

-Prijon Cruiser 470

-Prijon Calabria

-wilderness Systems Tarpon 120

-Current Designs Kestrel 120 Roto

-Current Designs Kestrel 120 Glass

-Current Desings Kestrel 140 Roto

-Current Designs Kestrel 140 Glass

-Current Designs Whisper

I love SOT’s
but I find them heavy (even the short ones) and cumbersome to load, unload, and carry.

If money’s not an object, I’d go with the Eddyline Skylark. My ex has observed that I’ve “never swung a boat around so easily” as I did the Skylark. It’s true.

The Necky Manitou 13 is about 45 pounds I think, and I found it reasonably easy to handle out of the water.

Also the Tsunami 120 in Duralite is a very nice “throw and go” kayak.

Good luck in your search.


The little Epic is probably the 'fastest
of the shorter boats … Pretty sure it is sub 4o pounds with hatches and bulkhead(s?) too.

Pocket rocket this thing is.

Impex Mystic
The Impex or Futura Mystic is fun, fast not expensive for what it is and light.

I have a friend with one, she can load it herself and it is fast enough at 14 feet.

She is 5"4" 125 - 130 Lbs and VERY fit.

Hope this helps.

I would see about trying some boats if you are looking at this as a sport. Join a club and folks will be delighted to show off their boats.

walden vista
I have a Walden Vista that i love for just cruising around on inland water. Its a rec boat (no front bulkhead) and 12’6" but its pretty quick for that length. Its also pretty light and easy to manage by myself. I’ve impressed lots of people by cartopping it myself in parking lots - mind you I had a short car at the time!

emotion edge?
my wife loves hers, and it’s a breeze for me to load/un-load.