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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live out in Richlands but frequent Lejuene for trout and drum fishing, been watching my boys with kayaks KILL it around there even in the winter months, recently. Really interested in getting into fishing from a kayak, so I've been doing a little research on my own on what to get but I'm interested if any of you experienced yak'ers have any suggestions?

Side note; I grew up in North Georgia so I'm not used to the thought of gators, close friend of mine in my unit says he refuses to take his kayak up the really small/shallow creeks anymore after a frightening run-in with a gator somewhere on the Neuse. He's from Arkansas. :rolleyes: What do you guys have to say about them? Is it actually something to be concerned about during the summer?
 

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Perception makes good kayaks for a moderate to low cost. Good starter kayaks. I've had a 'yak since last spring, and have used it quite a bit. I've had no issues with gators. I actually spotted one on Brices Creek, and paddled a little closer (but not TOO close) to investigate him. I respected his space, and he respected mine...of course I DO keep a "gator tamer" in my pocket, just in case. That is actually the ONLY encounter I've had with a gator, kayak or boat, in the 5 years I've lived here. So, no, I would not be overly concerned about gators. Just use common sense. Don't drag a string of fish in areas that likely harbor gators, and give them their space when you see one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Perception makes good kayaks for a moderate to low cost. Good starter kayaks. I've had a 'yak since last spring, and have used it quite a bit. I've had no issues with gators. I actually spotted one on Brices Creek, and paddled a little closer (but not TOO close) to investigate him. I respected his space, and he respected mine...of course I DO keep a "gator tamer" in my pocket, just in case. That is actually the ONLY encounter I've had with a gator, kayak or boat, in the 5 years I've lived here. So, no, I would not be overly concerned about gators. Just use common sense. Don't drag a string of fish in areas that likely harbor gators, and give them their space when you see one.
I catfish up there around Brices Creek a lot. I like that area. I fish almost every weekend and envy the ability to get down the creeks that a normally can't in the absence of a boat, I'm going to check out Perception.
 

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The best budget kayak is a used one from Craigslist. There are deals to be had on the big name yaks that you'll likely be happier with and more comfortable in than the cheaper box store brand yaks. Check several times a day and act fast whenever one pops up as they usually sell quick. I have a 2013 model 140 Tarpon and a 2011 model Ultimate 14.5 and have less than $800 in the pair.

As far as the gators go, I wouldn't worry about them.
 

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How will you be transporting it? Only reason I ask is I had to take the weight into account because I sling mine through the pop up window in the back of my suburban. I really need to get a truck....
 

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How will you be transporting it? Only reason I ask is I had to take the weight into account because I sling mine through the pop up window in the back of my suburban. I really need to get a truck....
Wait until you see a Subaru come barreling up behind you with one hanging out the side window. I never understand how people get away with stuff like this. I'd be pulled by the only state trooper that could recite all of the GS statutes.....before I ever made it on to the interstate.
 

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I have used a number of kayaks and find Perception to be very well made and comfortable. One thing to consider is that a 'budget' kayak may not be your best bet. If you buy a known brand high quality kayak, you can always sell it later if you no longer need it or want to upgrade. It will be easier to sell a well known brand and for a better price than a 'no-name' kayak....
 

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Best budget kayak

Luckily, there is so much variety out there now that you can make a very educated choice.

My experience has been that the kayak comfort is very important and its good to have an idea of what you like before pricing a kayak. For instance, kayaks are going to fit you differently whether you are rotund like me, short, tall, ect. Sitting in a kayak for several hours at a time will be agony if you are not comfortable.

Some of the less expensive kayaks are not real good for fishing since they do not have the ability to easily add attachments for fishing gear. When I first bought a Sun Dolphin Aruba 10' kayak, I intended to only use it for flying down the river. But, then I tried my hand at kayak fishing and got hooked.

I highly suggest getting in a bunch of different kayaks and get an idea of what you want then shop on craigslist or the stores. But, then again, if the deal is that good -- a pain in the back is better than a pain in the wallet sometimes. Good luck!
 

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I agree with what most folks have said. Perception makes some quality yaks (often they are old model Wilderness boats rebranded as Perception). Definitely consider weight if you're lifting the yak or plan to launch and pull out in some off the path places in addition to the loading after a long day on the water. As others have said, also check out the seats. I can sit in my Native Ultimate all day. Without a raised or adjustable seat, there's no way I can handle much time in a SOT or SINK. The good news as everyone has said, they are available on CL for good prices and if you get one and decide it's not right, it's not hard to get rid of. Good luck!
 

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Try a bunch before you buy one. Make sure you can handle it yourself some weigh ALOT. Worst budget is buying the wrong kayak than having to sell it. My suggestion is do not get a less than 12 footer, i would recommend a 14 footer if you plan on going out in the open ocean.
 
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