Seda Ikkuma 15

Sea kayak playboat put to the test at the Skookumchuck tidal rapids

Seda 15 on the Skookumchuck wave. Photo by Robert Zaleski.

SEDA'S NEW 15-FOOT IKKUMA (meaning "fire" in Inuit) isn't just a kid brother to the larger Seda 17. The new design concept caters to the same paddler who would tour in the 17, except that of the five boats tested, this one had the most secure outfitting. Off the rack, the system locks in butt, hips, thighs and feet, providing a fit that we're more accustomed to seeing in whitewater boats. That starts with a solid hung seat, IR LoungeBand Backband, built-in thigh braces with foam padding and the aluminum extrusion foot pegs you need when applying the considerable torque required to whip these "long boats" around on waves.

"It has more edge than its looks suggest, so it didn't catch if you got turned sideways," one tester said, citing the flat hull and hard chine. Our test Ikkuma in "expedition-build" fiberglass layup proved one of the stiffest and most responsive rides in the fleet, and with its retractable carbon-foil skeg, offered the best blend in performance for the two-part surf and tour day.

Specs: $2,700 in fiberglass, 44 lbs.; $3,300 in Kevlar, 41 lbs.; $3,300 in expedition-build fiberglass, 49 lbs., sedakayak.com. Length: 15' Width: 22" Depth: 12". Two hatches, retractable skeg, produced in Baja California, Mexico and San Diego, Calif.

This review first appeared in the March 2009 edition of C&K, as part of our review of Skook-worthy sea kayaks.