Kayaks I Like to Paddle
There are lots of kayaks out there and they come in different designs. But we all end up setting on designs and kayaks we are most comfortable with. Not all people like the same kayaks as I do and that is why they come in different designs. But I thought I would give everyone a bit of info on the kayaks that I like to be in.
First my two primary kayaks are a Nigel Dennis Explorer and a Nigel Dennis Romany HV. So my might start to see I am a pretty solid NDK fan but there a few other kayak out there that I love to paddle as well.
Why I do I like the NDK kayaks so much? First off my two NDK's are several years old and are built pretty much like tanks, which is the way I like. I know that they can be a bit heavier than other kayaks out there, but I am not to worried about how hard it is to get on and off my car. I am more worried about running a tiderace with rock all over and not destroying my kayak. My NDK's have taken a beaten and just keep on going. That is not to say that I have not had to patch a whole or add some gel here and there. They have their wounds, but they were earned honestly.
I decided on the NDK as my primary kayak years ago. I had the chance to paddle one for a summer and after being in various conditions with the kayak. In the end it was a solid performer that I felt at home in. The round hatches can be a bit of a pain to pack but that is a minimal issue for the great performance I get from these kayaks.
Now that said here are a few other kayaks I like. I own a P&H Capella 167. I really love playing around in this kayak. It feel a lot different than the NDK Romany to me. It is nimble and still can hold a good pace. It does great with dynamic water conditions and really is an overall sweet kayak. The lay up is a bit light for my taste but the design is pretty awesome.
Tiderace Kayaks are another group of kayaks I like. I have had the chance to play around in the Xcite but not the Xplore. The Xcite is a fun kayak. The overall construction seems to be great. The color schemes are very catchy and fresh. I am sure the Xplore is a great kayak as well. The one thing that holds me off on these two kayaks are their cost. They just seem to be a bit more than other high end kayaks out there and I am not sure they warrant the extra cost. But if you have the cash and don't mind shelling it out, it is a fun kayak.
Another option that I hope to be checking out soon is the Rockpool ALAW Back TCC. Rockpool is another UK company that produces an amazing design but the cost for a fiberglass kayak is just to expensive. But Eddyline kayaks is producing the kayak in their Carbonlite material. Now that it is being produced in the states the price drops. Though the material is different than fiberglass, I am very excited to check out the kayak. The kayak is designed for dynamic water conditions and the TCC material is suppose to be very durable. So this could turn out to be a fun kayak to play around rocks with. I will let you know after I demo the kayak.
Last but not least is Valley Canoe Products. Valley makes a full line of kayaks from hard chine to round chine kayaks. Valley pretty much makes all nice kayaks. From construction to performance they really have a good line of kayaks. Of course I am partial the round chined kayaks (Aquanaut and Avocet). But I would check out Valley if you haven't yet.
That is a nice list of kayaks that I really enjoy. There are tons of others and I am sure that some out there have different taste than I do. If you would like to share your favorite sea kayak, please leave a comment on your favorite kayak and why...