gear

Fluid Detox – Creek Streak

08.19.2011

Like to bomb the big stuff and play along the way? Imagine a creekboat with a playboat hull: That’s the Detox. Aptly suited for tearing up big green waves and dropping waterfalls, the Detox is the missing link between Fluid’s playful river-running Spice and its creek-specific Solo.

Jackson Super Hero Elite – Creek Streak

08.19.2011

You don’t necessarily need to be a hero to paddle Jackson’s revamped 2011 Hero line. Faster, lighter, and easier to control than its predecessor, the new Super Hero’s wide, flat-as-possible hull means stability. Lots of it.

Prijon Pure XL – Creek Streak

08.19.2011

Bombproof. The blow-molded, high-molecular-weight plastic in this new, plus-size downriver tank could likely survive a direct hit from a howitzer. We didn’t actually put a bomb in the German-designed creeker, but our testers did slam it into a rock or two.

Six Fast and Fit Touring Kayaks

07.21.2011

Running a kayak touring business in Manhattan is like driving a yellow cab in Boothbay, Maine. You get fares, but making a living is not easy. For the past 16 years, Eric Stiller, the founder of Manhattan Kayak Company has sold kayaking in the city that never sleeps and rarely paddles.

Current Designs Freedom – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

Here’s a boat that increases both your heart rate and fun rate. Long, fast, and exceedingly light, the smooth-lined Freedom is also surprisingly stable for those craving a specialty fitness boat, making it a great fit for any traditional sea kayaker looking to move faster while sacrificing only a wee bit of stability.

Cobra Eliminator – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

Made from super-linear polyethylene, the Eliminator is hit-me-with-your-best-shot durable. But at 42 pounds, it’s a handful to carry alone. It has the sleek racing design of an Olympic K-1—narrow bow, relatively high bucket seat and adjustable foot pedals to control the over-stern rudder…

Kayakpro Namu – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

Take a short, sluggish sea kayak—a standard beginner’s boat—hand it to a world-class sprinter, and viola! You get an efficient, fitness-oriented kayak.

Pyranha Speeder – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

From its source in Lake Tear of the Clouds on Mt. Marcy, the highest peak in New York, the Hudson rushes through the Adirondacks, ambles past the state capitol in Albany and, 315 miles later, meets the Atlantic at New York Harbor.

Hurricane Category 5 – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

The Hurricane Category 5 is billed as a performance kayak for training, racing and day-tripping on lakes. So when our testers first eyed this short, sleek, shiny red boat, we wondered why the North Carolina-based builders named a lightweight, rudderless craft meant for “quiet lakes” after a storm capable of tossing a well-fed cow over a barn.

Epic V8 – Fast and Fit Boats

07.20.2011

Epic’s first surfski, a 21-foot racing machine called the V10, was designed to be the fastest all-around ocean kayak in the world. Arguably, it was, especially when either of the designers—Olympian Greg Barton and 11-time Molokai champ Oscar Chalupsky—sat in the bucket.

Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

This review is featured in the June 2011 issue of Canoe & Kayak magazine, now on newsstands. Look at seals. They know how to enjoy themselves. Swimming in the northern Baja surf, they could have cared less about tracking, hull speed or covering miles. They were perfectly content to play in the rocks and eat […]

Dagger Alchemy 14.0L – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Capable sea kayak bred from the river DAGGER ALCHEMY 14.0L ($1,299 in roto-molded polyethylene, dagger.com) L: 14′; W: 24″; 54 lbs., also in a smaller 14.0S model Dagger started out as just a couple of guys in 1988, building whitewater kayaks in a small shop with a dirt floor. Now, they have new floors, a […]

Delsyk Nifty 430 – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Family friendly fun kayak DELSYK NIFTY 430 ($1,249 w/skeg, $1,299 w/rudder, in roto-molded polyethylene, delsyk.com) L: 14″; W: 24″; 58 lbs., also in a smaller 385 model The Nifty’s ultra-stable double-chine hull and extra-large cockpit are perfect for beginners, and an absolute blast for advanced paddlers. That doesn’t mean it can’t perform in the rough […]

P&H Delphin 155 RM – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Ocean playboat P&H DELPHIN 155 RM ($1,799 in roto-molded polyethylene, phseakayaks.com) L: 15.5′; W: 22.5″; 58 lbs. The British design philosophy: You need speed to play. This tenet rings true for the Brit-made Delphin, the popular new plastic cousin to P&H’s composite Aires. “We wanted this boat to handle like a traditional sea kayak on […]

Delta 15.5 Expedition – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Rocking touring boat DELTA 15.5 Expedition ($2,300 in thermoformed plastic, deltakayaks.com) L: 15’6″; W: 24.5″; 54 lbs., also in a smaller Sport model Delta is known for producing user-friendly sea kayaks. So, we took one of their 15.5s, what Delta calls the “mini-van” of its fleet, into the meat of the surf break. The tested […]

Prijon Motion – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Maneuverable touring kayak PRIJON MOTION ($1,650 in blow-molded HTP, wildnet.com) L: 14’11″; W: 23″; 57 lbs. Prijon’s low-profile Motion, which is formed from the same blow-molded plastic the German company uses in its famously durable whitewater boats, comes out of the wrapping ready to hit the rock gardens. Literally. “It’s got everything,” one tester said, […]

BorealDesign P2 Baffin – Rock-Hoppers

06.17.2011

Classic Greenland ride BOREALDESIGN P2 BAFFIN ($1,839 in roto-molded polyethylene, borealdesign.com) L: 17′; W: 22.25″; 59 lbs., also in smaller P1 and larger P3 models Canada’s Baffin Island is one of the most inhospitable places to paddle on the planet. Any boat bearing its name should be ready to get beat up. So that’s exactly […]

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Buyer's Guide

Buyer's Guide