Kayaking is a nice and rewarding sport to invest in as it is filled with a lot of fun and relaxation opportunities. That, as a matter of fact, is one of the reasons why the sport is among one of the fastest-growing sports in the United States. And from these statistics, it is obvious that there are more and more kayak newbies.
Well, if you happen to be new to kayaking, or you have enough skills to place you just above a beginner, you might have some trouble picking a kayak for yourself. Don’t feel sad, even experts have this issue sometimes. With the many outstanding kayaks in the market today, you could easily choose one only to realize that you could have gone for a better one if you only knew what to consider when buying a kayak.
So here’s the gist, I’m writing the article to show you how to avoid the frustrating mistake of buying yourself a kayak you wouldn’t love. I don’t only have a brief introduction about kayaks and their attributes, I also have a list of my best kayak for beginner to Intermediate level ‘yakkers. So tighten your seat straps and go with the flow.
Kayaks are one of the many sweethearts that we use to move across water bodies. It has a few attributes that set it apart. And the differences in the values of these attributes are what make kayaks different from one another. These attributes are:
Material and Durability
As a beginner, it is very possible that you suck at steering the kayak and you keep hitting that innocent thing against this and that. That is why you should consider getting a kayak that can withstand as many hits as possible without stress. There are basically 7 materials that you can choose from; Kevlar, inflatable plastic, hard plastic, carbon fiber, fiberglass, wood, and fabric with a frame.
You don’t want to keep falling into the water every time you rock the kayak or hit the smallest obstacle. Stable kayaks are suitable for navigation in rough waters, and usually, the flatter kayaks are more stable.
The length of the kayak comes into play when you’re weighing speed against easy maneuverability. The longer kayaks move faster on water than the shorter ones while the shorter ones have a maneuverability edge.
Depth and Width
The depth and width of the kayak are good factors to consider if you would be needing extra storage space on the kayak. Deep kayaks are often perfect for bigger people who need enough space to comfortably fit into. The width of the kayak also contributes to its stability but there would be a compromise on the speed.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Kayak
Also, you need to know that there are a few things you really need to consider before picking a kayak for yourself.
Number of Seats
This often determines how many people you could possibly take kayaking with you. Some kayaks only have room for one person. Some others go as far as creating room for the paddler, an adult, and a kid.
Sit-On or Sit-In
A sit-on kayak gives you enough room to comfortably hold your legs, while affording every part of your body, including your legs, to bask in the warmth of the sun. On the other hand, sit-in kayaks cover your legs from your thighs down.
Body of Water
Stability, tracking, and maneuverability are two important things that were put in mind when a kayak is being designed. It is easy to track on some waters and it is a pointless effort on some other waters. Same goes for stability and maneuverability.
Some kayaks are just not suitable for kids, just as there are kayaks that were specifically made for kids.
As mentioned earlier in the brief introduction, kayaks vary in their build materials. Some are tougher than others. So if you think you would be kayaking more on turbulent waters where you have a high chance of hitting your kayak against obstacles, it only makes sense to buy the kayaks with the toughest build materials.
My Pick of the Best Beginner to Intermediate Kayaks
You should now begin to understand the world of kayaking better if you didn’t before. Without any further ado, here are some of the best kayaks for you.
The Malibu Tandem kayak really stakes its claim as a very good beginner’s kayak with its versatility as it has no less than seven seating options. It has a triform hull which makes it suitable for virtually every kayaking activity. The Malibu Tandem also has a rotatable seat which can be made to face the rear.
It can contain about 450lbs weight but remains very stable notwithstanding.
The Malibu Tandem comes with four cool self-draining holes that quickly drains water that comes in from the side. It has tons of space for storage compartment and UV resistant seats, it also glows in the dark, really neat yeah?
- Very great stability and tracking
- Versatile storage spaced
- Not the fastest kayak.
Wilderness Systems is a company that makes some of the best kayaks with a sit-on-top hull. It’s 10 feet, 30-inch frame makes it a portable sized kayak, which makes it ideal for beginners as it’s easy to learn with.
It’s modest size notwithstanding, it is very stable and also has extra room for storing gear in the cockpit, including a full-size stern hatch which holds clothes as well as food. Its specifically built for flatwater kayaking and is perfect for use in lakes and easy flowing rivers. It lasts longer if cared for and it is relatively economical.
- Really durable
- Quite stable
- Storage compartment opening is quite small
Designed with a modest length of 10 feet, this kayak is very good for beginners as it’s easy enough to maneuver. It also means it can’t contain bigger or taller kayakers as there would be little legroom. It carries a storage compartment in the rear and also has a paddle keeper which ensures paddles don’t fall when you’re hands-free.
At 52lbs weight, it can contain 325lbs and also has two dry storage compartments. The R15 Pescadors also has a very comfortable seating system (CSS), which makes paddling very comfortable. It has a lot of storage space too and it is fitted with onboard accessories. Did I mention that the seats are adjustable? Well, they are.
- Versatile storage spaces
- Really comfortable seats
- Cockpit could be quite hard to get into
Wrapping it All Up
Choosing the best kayak that would best suit your preferences should not be a tough decision anymore. Of course, you could also review some other kayaks yourself and pick the one that works best for you. Kayaking is all about self-comfort, isn’t it?
If you have any questions or inquiries, make sure to drop them in the comment section below and we would be glad to attend to you. Remember, do not hesitate to go all out in picking the right choice of kayak for yourself.