Great forum here. Have been reading for a while but only just joined up. I was wondering if I could get some advice on chosing my first kayak.
I am looking at the cheaper end of the market as I will also need to buy all of the other necessary accessories (trolley, roof racks, paddle, gaff, anchor, lanyards etc). The primary function that I want it for is going out through the surf and fishing some of the inshore reefs here on the Gold Coast (up to approx 2km offshore). I’m 6’ and 65kg (pretty skinny). I have a few friends that have been pretty successful doing this type of fishing with some very cheap yaks from BCF etc. I rate myself as a very good swimmer and am pretty safety conscious.
I was looking at the RTM tempo angler as a local store had them on sale for $499 which seemed like a vey good price. Unfortunately they are sold out.
The next option that I was looking at is the Scorpio Leatherback. I have read on the internet that they are either very similar to, or exactly the same as the Mantra Palani which seem to get good reviews. They also come as a package deal.
Then there is the Cobra Fish’n’Dive. For someone inexperienced like me, this seems to be a good option on paper due to it’s stability, however they sound hard to live with due to their slowness and lack of rudder option. I saw some posts from a member “Knot-too-fast” (doesn’t seem to be on the forum anymore) who had put a small petrol outboard on his with counterweights. This sounds a bit out there but I can see the logic for it on this model having owned boats before. Combined price of the Yak and small 4 stroke motor is still less than the price of some basic yaks with a rudder however this would be the upper limit of my budget. Motor would probably not like being submerged in a tip over - would this be unlikely inthis yak even in the surf this may be unlikely if they are as stable as people say.
Next would be OK Prowler. These seem a bit overpriced to me especially compared to the US models that are cheaper and better appointed than the NZ ones. They do always receive good reviews though like most kayaks they seem to be a compromise, but are also starting to get out of my price range.
Can anyone give me some advice? There is a huge pool of experience here and it would be great to learn from someone else’s mistakes!