Your thoughts on Prijon Combi 359?

I was just perusing websites and stumbled across this Prijon kayak which is apparently new this year. At first glance I thought it might possibly be the ugliest boat I’ve ever seen. But the more I looked at it, the more I liked it. They say it’s good up to Class IV whitewater “in the hands of a competent paddler”. While I don’t aspire to Class IV, I’m sure it would handle the Class II’s around here easily. Since it’s long (for a ww boat) I’d imagine it would be fairly fast for those slower moving parts of the river. I like that it has a hatch, and Prijon has a reputation for making quality boats (right?). Just wanted to get some of your random thoughts.



click on Whitewater Kayaks, then All River, then Combi 359 - WW

Prijon 359
I too was curious about the 359 and was able to paddle on at the WCSKS last Sept. My recollection is that it was a nice fairly responsive boat and should do well on those flat spots between the “interesting” stuff. I don’t know about class IV though. Maybe someone with a lot more skill than me. It was a nice boat but not a “I gota get one of these” boat. You are right about Prijon building sturdy boats, I have a Calabria in my stable, the only plastic boat I own out of 10, or is it 11? :slight_smile:


what are you planning on using it for?

– Last Updated: Apr-08-05 8:23 AM EST –

Yes Prijon makes good boats but like all compromise boats this kayak would be OK at some things but not good at anything in particular. It looks like a rec boat with better outfitting. If you're going to be running whitewater, you would be better served by the manueverability offered by a true whitewater boat. If you're going to do touring, a longer and stiffer tracking kayak would be better. If all you are paddling are small windy rivers with riffles in them, get this boat.

I already have…
a touring boat, a rec boat, and a used ww boat (I haven’t used it, but will be taking classes soon).

I honestly don’t think I’m going to be very good at whitewater, but I think I would enjoy bouncing around in the riffles, maybe up to Class II. I’ve paddled a creek with a Class II wave train (twice) on a SOT and it was fun. But there’s a thin line between fun and survival and I don’t want to have to worry about injury and death every time I go paddling. I also don’t think I’ll ever be able to roll. I mean, I’ll be 50 soon, so what am I trying to prove, and to whom?

Sorry for the rambling answer, but I think this boat might be a good compromise between rec boat and ww boat. I could do the Class II’s and (I’m guessing) be a tad less likely to flip than in a real ww boat, it seems like it would be more fun than in my rec boat, it would also be faster on the flat parts than a ww boat… that’s my thinking anyway.

I know what everybody’s going to tell me… “learn to roll, learn to roll, blah, blah, blah”. I’m going to give it one more try (a class) but honestly, I feel like I’m doing that more to please other people who want me to do ww with them (more of a social thing), than really wanting to myself. Heck, I’d be happy to paddle lakes and rivers with moderate riffles forever. Help me out here.

You’re not trying to prove anything to anyone. The only reason we participate in this sport is for our own personal enjoyment. I started out touring and only tried out whitewater for the first time last summer. I didn’t think I would ever seriously get into it, but I found it enjoyable and I also found that I could confidently and safely navigate some class III rapids by the end of a single summer. If you do want to easily run class II’s, maybe a sit on top inflatable kayak would be the answer.

As to the age thing, I think that’s no excuse at all. All the best paddlers I know are all in their fifties. I have even paddled whitewater with a gentleman who is close to 80 and is just beginning to get his roll. People don’t recommend rolling because it’s “cool” or any other silly reason. We recommend it because it helps us enjoy our sport safely and it is a gateway to increased skill development. Best of luck on your class and keep a positive attitude about it!