Recreational kayaks are a lot of fun to use in all types of water. Kayaking as a family is a great way to spend quality time together. Kayaking will give you a great workout without you even realizing it because you’re having so much fun. Best recreational kayaks come in a huge range of prices, sizes, styles and colors. There are two main types of recreational kayaks: sit-in or sit-on-top. The sit-in kayaks can be a little more stable because they give you a lower center of gravity. However, some users feel a bit claustrophobic sitting inside the kayak. Larger users might also feel cramped in a sit-inside kayak. Sit-on-top kayaks can be less stable but are easier to get in and out of. Many people kayaking with kids like the sit-on-top kayaks so that the kids can get on and off the kayak easily by themselves.
How to choose the Best Recreational Kayak
When you are choosing a recreational kayak keep in mind where you are going to use it for most often. If you want to kayak as a way to work out then you should look for a sport kayak that will give you a better workout and be lighter and faster than kayaks built for multiple purposes. If you want to take your kids out kayaking or kayak just for fun then you should choose a kayak that has the comfort and stability to stand up to long hours of use in multiple types of water and weather conditions. You don’t have to spend a fortune to get a good multi-use kayak.
Sit-on-top kayaks tend to be more stable and they are easy to control. If you are just getting started with kayaking you may find this style much easier to get accustomed to. This style is excellent for fishing because it allows for maximum mobility of your arms and legs.
Sit-in kayaks tend to be quicker and more agile which is vital if youre paddling rapids or currents. This style tends to keep the rider more dry than a sit-on-top model but you should always dress prepared for a capsize.
If you plan to camp or make a day out of your kayak excursions youll need to have plenty of storage. A recreational kayak should have ample compartments for dry storage of gear, food and emergencies. Just remember that more cargo equals more weight, which can slow down your trip.
The next consideration to keep in mind is how you’re going to haul a kayak.
Dont forget that youll need to take your kayak to the water and that means hauling it in your vehicle. You may want to consider the weight of the unit if you will be handling it often. This includes loading and unloading it to your vehicle as well as carrying it to the water each time. If you don’t have a vehicle that can readily transport a kayak you may need to consider a trailer. There are actually some very inexpensive trailers available that can be pulled behind a car or truck. Just do some research and you’re sure to find something to fit your needs.
Reviews on best recreational kayak
Old Town Vapor 10 Kayak
The Old Town Vapor 10 is a fantastic kayak for family use on slow rivers or on calm lakes. It doesn’t have great stability in rougher waters but if you are going to be on a lake for the day or in a slow river this kayak will be comfortable for you to use all day. It has an extra-large cockpit area so that you can comfortably fit a child if you are taking a child and don’t want to a tandem kayak.
If you like to take your dog out kayaking with you it will also fit a small to medium sized dog as well as a person. The price of the Vapor 10 is very reasonable and it does have some features that usually only come with more expensive kayaks. One of the best features that it has is thigh and knee pads that will make long kayaking trips much more comfortable. It also has a foot brace system that helps to control and steer the kayak.
Because this is a sit-in kayak some people find that the lower center of gravity takes some getting used to. Even though the kayak is only 10 feet long, which isn’t very long, some people find it to be very heavy. It weighs about 47 pounds. So if you are going to be carrying a lot of gear and you have children in tow you might need to have an extra set of hands helping you to get this kayak in the water. The storage area in the cockpit is a good place to keep cell phones, keys, drinks and other items.
Pelican Matrix 100X Kayak
The Pelican Matrix 100X is a smart choice for intermediate kayakers or advanced beginners who want a kayak that is fast enough to test their skills. This kayak is a 10 foot long very light kayak that can get up to some really nice speeds. It weighs less than 40 pounds so it’s easy for users of any size to lift it, load it, and launch it without any problems. The bright blue color is easy to see and really stands out. The Matrix 100X has a lot of extra features that kayaks made for beginners don’t have.
It has knee pads and a very nicely padded seat. It also has a storage compartment in the stern for larger items and a quick access storage hatch in the cockpit. It also has a cup holder and a small cockpit table. Kayakers who have this boat love it for the quickness and lightness, but beginners sometimes struggle with it. Because the kayak is so light it can drift a bit when the user is not paddling which can scare beginners a little.
If you are using the kayak on a lake or on a calm river then a little drift isn’t going to be too much of a concern. The cockpit of this kayak is not terribly large, so larger users might have a tougher time getting in and out of it. They may also feel a little cramped inside it. There are adjustable foot pegs to make it more comfortable for users of all sizes.
Riot Escape 9 Kayak
If you are looking for a small and light kayak that is ideal for lake use the Riot Escape 9 is the perfect choice. It is made for lakes and shallow rivers. It’s just 9 feet long and it’s agile enough to get in and out of very small spaces. It also can turn on a dime. It weighs less than 40 pounds which makes it simple for anyone, even small users, to unload it and launch it anywhere.
The Riot Escape 9 has exceptional handling and is safe even for beginners to handle. This kayak is one of the most often used by kayak rental companies because it is versatile enough to accommodate kayakers of all skill levels. It is a sit-on-top kayak so it’s easy to get in and out of. It has a lot of nice built in features like molded foot rests, a cupholder and a dry hatch for storage of important items like keys and phones.
The cockpit area is not large, because of the small size of the kayak. So if you want to go kayaking with a friend or loved one you will need a tandem kayak or a second Escape 9. But after you see how much fun this kayak is you will probably not want to share it anyway. Experienced kayakers will find this is a fun kayak to take in rougher water but less skilled kayakers should stick to lakes with this one. The weight limit on the kayak is listed as 300 but any weight over about 180 makes the kayak sit very low.