Which kayak to choose?

I am looking to buy a sit on top kayak for under $1000. I would mainly be using it to fish out of, but I travel a lot and would love to try it out on some whitewater as well. I know I’m trying to blend two kayaks into one, but has anyone had any experience with this? Or have any advice?

I have done hours upon hours of research on this. So far, my favorite is the 10.5" Kaku Wahoo. Any comments are greatly appreciated!

At the end of the day, it is all preference and definitions. Fishing and going down a river can be accomplished, But the stability to fish and speed to move between fishing spots is very opposed to the maneuverability and responsiveness needed to play in white water. The biggest single issue I see is most SOT’s are keeled (to travel straight) and flat (to be stable). White water play requires the ability to easily spin and crossing eddie lines requires the ability to lean the boat to prevent catching an edge and flipping (boats that lean feel less stable)

Thanks for the comment! I agree with you. I know I am looking for something that is crossing into two totally different realms. I’m starting to think it might be best to choose two kayaks and decide which one I would rather have now and which one I want to get further down the road.

That is probably a good assessment. I have fished from touring kayaks, and others have as well. It can be done, but some adjustments may be necessary to make fishing a more comfortable experience. The question becomes one of “which is more important.” The playing in the boat or the fishing.

For fishing, a solo canoe may be better than most kayaks, regardless of design. If you don’t want to go that route, that’s fine, just posing another possible choice two a second, lightly used, kayak.


Thanks for the insight Rick!

SOT kayaks excel as fishing platforms, and some work well for multi-day touring. Whitewater, even easy whitewater takes a totally different skill set, as well as a different kayak.

Fishing and whitewater in a SOT? You are not blending, you are trying to mix completely different worlds. What one looks for in a fishing kayak would probably be the exact opposite of what is required for whitewater. Don’t even think of it. At best you will get a yak that will do both with complete mediocrity. Get yourself a nice fishing kayak and if you want to play in whitewater you can often pick up an old whitewater yak pretty cheap.