2012 Summer Kayak Roundup

| July 5, 2012 | 5 Comments

A pick of the litter mix of kayaks we just can’t help tell you all about

We pride ourselves on our selection and recognize that sometimes it can be overwhelming for our customers when they come face to face with the thousands of products we sell. While we love all of our kayaks, we know that sometimes it helps to feature a few select products based on customer popularity, positive reviews, reputation and our very own on-the-water personal experiences. In this case, we have pulled six kayaks, each from a different category, that we thought were worth highlighting based on said criteria, check it out:


Necky Rip 12 (Category: Sit-Inside)
If there is one thing that manufacturers have learned over the years is that when it comes down to designing a kayak for the masses, you must address three key design features, which include comfort, stability and performance. The Necky Rip has it all and more. It’s been a favorite at our Demo Days with enthusiastic comments about its glide and roomy cockpit. On a personal level, I enjoy the performance of the boat, it’s quick but does not sacrifice stability for it. I do wish it was a bit lighter for being a Sit-Inside, but at 50lbs it’s not too shabby. Click for other details.


Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 (Category: Sit-on-Top)
There is a reason the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 is our best selling Sit-on-Top kayak and that simply because it’s a proven product. The Tarpon 120 is a well-balanced and finely tuned kayak that has been a favorite for both recreational and kayak anglers alike. Not only does this boat perform well, it also looks good! When considering tracking, stability, deck features, rigging options and comfort, the Tarpon 120 gets a checkmark for each one. The seat is extremely comfortable with both adjustable back and thigh support but it could use a bit more padding for those long days of fishing. Click for other details.

Ocean Kayak Malibu 2XL (Sit-on-Top Tandem)
Tandems can be a tricky buy especially for those looking to buy a boat that can be used as either a tandem or solo with similar performance you’d find in a single kayak. I have never personally owned a tandem kayak as my wife and I have always preferred the freedom of having two kayaks but the super stable Malibu 2XL is our favorite go-to rental kayak when taking the kids out. I am 6’2” so having the extra space between seats is nice. I do wish there was a bit more bottom and thigh support in the design of the seat areas on the deck but overall this is probably one of the best recreational tandems out there. Click for other details.

Diablo Paddlesports Adios (SUP/Kayak Hybrid)
Chances are, you’ve probably read a post or two about these boats if you follow our blog or if you are a newsletter subscriber. Believe me when I say it’s not just because it’s a new to us product but simply because we truly believe in it. The Adios is a winner amongst kayak anglers for its comfort, capacity, stability and rigging options and even more so the ability to stand or sit while paddling with little concern for tipping over. These aren’t the fastest boats out there but then again, they’re designed for stability not racing. Don’t be fooled by thinking it is designed only for fishing though, recreational kayakers enjoy this boat too! Click for other details.

Native Watercraft Mariner (Pedal Driven)
Hobie revolutionized leg and foot powered kayaks and some manufacturers such as Native Watercraft, have followed through with their own designs. Take note though, the Propel system that Native designed is uniquely different than Hobie’s technology, utilizing some very familiar mechanics normally found on bicycles. The Mariner is propelled with a circular forward motion of your legs like you would on a bicycle. There is a decent sized propeller that actually gets the boat moving just like that of a trolling motor except that it is human powered as opposed to battery. I have recently noticed many tournament competitors using the Mariners and I can see why. They are hands free so you can concentrate on fishing, and best of all you can go forward or reverse! The price range is abit higher than most kayaks but well worth the money. Click for other details.


Motorized – Ocean Kayak Torque (Sit-on-Top Motorized)
Many manufacturers have tried to design kayaks with motors built into them but often it comes off seeming like an afterthought. Ocean Kayak took a different approach by designing a kayak around the motor from the ground up. The result is a motorized kayak that just feels right. It may not be for everyone but if you need to get somewhere fast or suffer from arm or leg pain, the Torque is your answer. I personally enjoy using it when paddling for long periods of time. It allows for me to fish later than usual knowing that I’ll be able to get back to land in no time. Like the Mariner, it certainly is in a whole other category of design and budget but worth every penny if a motorized kayak is what you need. Click for other details.

Putting this list together was tough because we sell so many other kayaks that we truly believe in and enjoy using. We’ll have to do another round up soon. In the meantime, browse our full line of kayaks by clicking here.

Have you ever used any of these boats? What was your experience like? Share it by commenting below.

Thanks for reading! – Roland @ACK

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Category: Gear Guide, Kayaking, Resources

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Sites That Link to this Post

  1. 2012 Summer Kayak Roundup « The ACK Blog! – Own A Kayak | July 7, 2012
  2. Choosing the Right Kayak « The ACK Blog! | October 16, 2012
  1. hi i have annative watercraft mariner peddle drive iam hearing a clink clink as i peddleis this normal 207-655-2608
    maine_hunter2000@yahoo.com

    • Roland says:

      Hello, that doesn’t sound right, should be a smooth glide. Happy to help where we can. I’ll have our customer service team contact you.

  2. Jaycifer says:

    Hi I have converted an unusual looking kayak to motorised using petrol strimmer with shaft straight through it :) all I need is propeller lol 4″left rotation and so far the cost ….freeee I will put it on YouTube (jaycifer6) I have no idea if it will go well lol but it will be interesting ..any input will be welcome :) jaycifer¥

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