Viking Fishing Kayaks Coming to America
YakGear will distribute the New Zealand made boats starting with retailer ACK
By Paul Lebowitz
US kayak anglers will soon have another couple of interesting options. Viking Kayaks, based in beautiful New Zealand, announced a distribution deal with ever-expanding accessory manufacturer and wholesaler Yak Gear of Houston, Texas.
Viking has been in the kayak-making business for 15 years. While their boats have been hard to get in North America, the company’s designs have turned heads from afar. Two models in particular are set to make the trip: the new Profish Reload and the Profish 400 Lite. Built along traditional go-far lines, they are sit-down offshore cruisers in the 29- to 30-inch wide range.
The Reload in particular is intriguing. It comes with the removable Reload Tackle Pod System. It’s similar to the Flex Pod found on the Wilderness Systems Ride115X, but considerably longer, occupying most of the center console area. A scupper beneath the forward portion allows direct transducer-water contact. The stats: 14.8 feet long, 29 inches wide, 64 pounds.
The Profish 400 Lite is about a foot shorter and weighs in at an easy 54 pounds. There’s a tackle pod for this one too. The stats: 13.2 feet long, 30.5 inches wide, 54 pounds.
Both models feature typical fishing features: rod holders, multiple hatches, tankwells, you get the idea.
Austin Canoe and Kayak (ACK) will be the first retailer to offer these boats. MSRPs and availability dates have not been announced.
Selections from the Viking Kayaks press release:
About Viking Kayaks
Viking Kayaks has been designing kayaks for the New Zealand market for almost 15 years. After recent success as a dominant kayak manufacturer in New Zealand due to their unique tracking and stability designs for offshore compatibility, Viking Kayak is now bringing their designs to the United States.
The development of Viking Kayaks is the result of the collaborative efforts of both Stephen Tapp – one of New Zealand's most well know and experienced kayak anglers – and Grant Montague, owner of Viking Kayaks, New Zealand. Together, Stephen and Grant have a combined 28 years' experience manufacturing and designing fishing kayaks.
Viking Kayak Models
The Viking Kayak Profish Reload (14.8 feet long, 29 inches wide, 64 lbs.) is a sit-on-top kayak that is fast, stable, and easy to manage on and off the water. The Profish is the choice for anglers seeking touring endurance combined with stability. The Profish Reload features the Reload Tackle Pod. The Reload Tackle Pod System offers the ability to have a fully integrated and removable depth finder, battery, and transducer setup combined with a large tackle storage space. It's now quick and easy to remove or reload your valuable depth finder, transducer, and tackle – the ultimate in convenience. The Profish Reload will be available in two colors: Grey Mist and Yellow/Black combo.
The Viking Profish Reload
Also offered is the Viking Kayak Profish 400 Lite (13.2 feet long, 30.5 inches wide, 54 lbs.). The Profish 400 is an excellent paddling kayak suitable for long offshore excursions as well as inshore paddles. Being lightweight makes it easy to load on to roof racks and carry to and from the water. The detachable tackle pod option makes setting up for your fishing trip quick and easy. The Profish 400 will be available in two colors: Green/Black combo and Orange/Black combo.
The Viking Profish 400 Lite
Built for Customized Rigging
Customization is key when rigging fishing kayaks for different types of fishing or individual preferences. Understanding this, Yak Gear is bringing in the two Viking Kayaks to the United States with the intention that the customer can finish much of the accessory design. Customization options include varieties of options for seat choice, flush mount rod holder placement, center pod configuration, anchor trolley positioning, and even external mount placement.
Not into rigging for kayak fishing? The two Viking Kayaks make great recreational and surfing kayaks as well!
Where to Find Viking Kayaks
Austin Kayak, headquartered in Austin, Texas, will be the first retailer to offer the two models of Viking Kayaks. Inquiries about availability can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Yak Gear will be adding three more retailers to the exclusive list of Viking Kayaks Dealers by 2015.