Inflatable kayaks are a great option for people that want to enjoy the water but need options that are more flexible than hard shell kayaks. This style makes it possible to enjoy kayaking even if you don’t have a big truck or SUV to haul a bulky kayak.
City dwellers who walk or take mass transit can still get out on the water with these kayaks which are easy to transport and are relatively light. The lighter weight of these air filled vessels also makes it much easier for people who are small or don’t have a lot of upper body strength to carry their kayaks to the shore. Instead of having to drag a hefty hard shell from the parking area to the shore you can carry the boat in a carrying pouch and inflate it at the shore.
Reviews of the Best Inflatable Kayaks
The biggest concern people have about air filled kayaks is durability. Even though these kayaks are inflatable they are heavy duty enough to handle white water or rough conditions without any damage. You will be amazed at the kind of punishment these crafts can take without deflating, sinking, or tipping. They are every bit as durable as a hard shell kayak. Many people find that these crafts are much easier to navigate and allow them to reach places that traditional kayaks have a hard time getting to. You can choose from sit-in or sit-on-top styles just as you can with hard kayaks. If you love the water but owning a hard shell kayak isn’t practical for you, do yourself a favor and check these out:
Sea Eagle SE370 All Purpose Kayak
The SeaEagle SE370 is the perfect all-purpose kayak. It can handle smooth lakes, rivers, surf or even white water without any problem at all. It is virtually impossible to tip. Kayakers who have gone out on the SeaEagle SE370 were amazed at the stability of this model. It can be tough to steer in a straight line but once you get the hang of steering it you will be fine. The outer shell is tough and can handle a lot of punishment without ripping or tearing. If you love to take your dog kayaking with you this one is strong enough to handle dog claws without requiring an emergency patch job. A repair kit is included, but you probably won’t need it.
This water craft can handle a lot more weight than a traditional kayak. The manufacturer’s rating for this kayak is 650 pounds. People have reported going on the water in this kayak with multiple people, dogs, kids and coolers and gears without a problem. If you want a craft that is safe, family friendly, and easy to transport anywhere this is a great choice.
A foot pump is included and the kayak inflates quickly. It weighs around 30 pounds when it’s not inflated. It also has a carrying case but you won’t be able to fit paddles inside the carrying case. It has a self-bailing drain valve that will take care of any water that does get in. It also has a nice padded seat and spray skirts to keep all that extra spray out of the craft if you’re in rough or white water.
Intek Explorer K2 beginners Kayak
The Intek Explorer K2 is a great choice for beginners who just want a comfortable and stable boat to take out on lakes or quiet rivers. It’s also great for campers and other people who want a small craft that they can use without a lot of hassle. It weighs under 30 pounds when it’s in the carrying case so it’s easy to carry if you’re hiking or have a long way to go to reach the water.
It comes with paddles so you don’t need any additional equipment to get on the water. It is small and can’t comfortably fit more than two people. It has a weight limit of 250 pounds. Some people have complained that the removable skeg gets lost easily but it does snap into place securely on the craft. The Explorer K2 is very affordable and has great durability.
If you are looking for a summer craft to use at a lake house or for the kids to use for summer fun this is the one for you. It is not quite as stable as some other vessels but it still holds up well to hours of use. As long as you are using it in calm water you shouldn’t have any problems at all. It comes with two paddles, a pump and a patch kit in addition to the carrying case. If you are new to kayaking and want to try it out without investing a lot of money in equipment this model is the perfect inflatable kayak for you to try.
Advanced Elements AE1007-R hybrid Kayak
The Advanced Elements AE1007-R is a hybrid kayak. It has aluminum ribs in the stern and in the bow which gives it fantastic steering and stability. It’s still easy to inflate and carry, but the aluminum supports give it a little more carry weight.
Most air filled models weigh around 35 pounds to carry but this one weighs closer to 60. It’s still easier to carry, load and unload than a traditional hard shell kayak though. The extra stability is nice to have in rougher waters. This kayak can go anywhere and handle any type of conditions. It is a traditional sit-in style kayak. It comes with moveable padded seats that are very comfortable even if you’re going to be on the water for hours.
Because the seats can be positioned in any of three different places it’s easy to adjust the kayak to accommodate two people. The weight limit for the kayak is a generous 550 pounds so it can easily handle two adults plus coolers or gear. Kayak fishermen love using this for fishing.
The price is a little higher than other kayaks of its style but the extra durability of this kayak makes it a good investment if you spend a lot of time on the water. The AE1007-R has three layers of super durable material so that even if one were to become damaged the craft would still be fine until the damage could be patched. It is not a self-bailing craft, but very few people ever notice any water getting inside.