Melba Kayak April 09th, 2018 - 13:15:28
Whether you want to get a sit on top or a sit in kayak, there are a few things you should look for. Unfortunately for so many people, a cheap recreational kayak has turned out to be just that - cheap! You truly do get what you pay for when it comes to buying a recreational kayak. Just because I dont recommend getting a cheap kayak, that doesnt mean you need to spend a ton of money. I want you to get the best recreational kayak you can afford, and love using it for a very long time! 5 things to look for in a recreational kayak: 1. Comfortable Seating Any kayak you buy should have padding on the seat and some adjustments that can be made to the seat. Never, ever buy a kayak with only a plastic roto-molded seat. You will regret the decision halfway through your first paddle. You are stuck with the seat on any kayak that you get, so your money will be well spent by making sure your seat is properly padded and adjustable.
But, as important as the structural makeup of the kayak is, kayaks are typically classified to the type of kayaking theyre designed to do. Kayaks built for touring are much different from those for whitewater paddling. There isnt any single kayak that will excel in every type of paddling category. As you shop for your kayak, you need to anticipate your future paddling style and then select a kayak that should perform well in that primary kayak category but also keep in mind your skill level and price range as well. Now there are kayaks out there - especially in the inflatable kayak category that lends itself better to multiple styles/designs then their counter parts. So if you are not sure if you will be using your kayak in any one particular category, consider some high quality companies like Sea Eagle, Innova, Airis and Advance Elements to name a few who use a lot of cross over inflatable kayaks to fit multiple needs. But keep in mind that they will not excel in all categories, they still focus on one particular category but do well in other categories better then most. So focus still on a particular category.
2. Size Matters... not so much Kayaks come in different lengths for a reason. Generally, the shorter the kayak, the easier it is to turn and maneuver. The longer the kayak, the better it tracks in a straight line. It is important to know what types of water you will be paddling in before you make a purchase. Recreational kayaks are generally between 10 and 12. There isnt going to be a huge amount difference between a 10 and 12 kayak. Both sizes work great in several types of water, so dont sweat too much over this choice. Dont forget that a larger kayak will weigh more, so make sure you can pick it up by yourself. 3. Storage Space and Deck Rigging Anytime you are looking at recreational kayaks, you want to pay attention to the available amount of dry storage space built into the kayak. Trust me, you will want to take things out with you that you dont want to get wet, so this space will be extremely valuable. Look at the outside of the kayak. Does it have a paddle holder and other bungee type rigging around the deck for storing items you want to keep within reach? You may think these things are not important, but they soon will be. You need to have places on your boat where you can stow things and attach items that you may want to use during your paddle. You also need to know that deck rigging, paddle holders and other attachments can be added to almost any kayak after you purchase it. However, you this may require professional installation.
4. Price Realistically, you should plan on spending $500-$700 on a good quality kayak. There are plenty of name brand models that have good recreational kayaks in this price range. In this price range, you can get good storage space and great seating that you will be happy with for a long time. You can find kayaks much cheaper than $500, but honestly I would not recommend going with a kayak that is at the bottom of the price range. They will be much harder to paddle, they will have uncomfortable seating, and you wont have the storage space to be comfortable while you are out on the water. Remember, we want to get you the BEST cheap recreational kayak, not the cheapest one on the market.