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I have been in conversation with an NC manufacturer of kayaks famous for their whitewater boats. They want to get into the fishing kayak business. As of yet they do not make any, but would like some insight as to what would make the ideal fishing yak. Now as I study the market there are two basic kinds, sit-on-tops for the salt water crowd and sit-ins for the inland fisherman. What I want are the opinions of you guys that use either or maybe both. I realise one type will have to have stuff the other will not, so maybe put your dream fishing yak into two boats. What would you like to see in your ideal fishing kayak? What features would you like to have your current boat does not? Which boats have the best of what ever it is you want, i.e. what combo of features would you like? Let me hear from you as I'm going to see if I can't do some computer modeling for them.
 

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I have studied both sit-on and sit-in kayaks for fishing for the past 4 months. They both have pros and cons as far as fishing goes. The sit-on is great for warm summer days and water (south and west areas). The sit-in is great for cooler days and water by use of a spray skirt. But the cockpit size of the sit-in fishing kayak (50 or better inchs) is not a sea worthy kayak and therefore is reduced to inland waters. The reason being is that a spray skirt that covers a 50 inch or better cockpit will inplode if any sizable wave breaks over the deck. Not seaworthy.

Now, a seaworthy sit-in yak for year round weather would only need one simple adjustment in construction. Make a kayak that will hold 400 to 450 lbs. (for gear) and that has a 40 to 44" x 20" cockpit that will allow for easy access. At 40 to 44 inches a spray skirt would hold up against a sizable wave and keep you dry and warm during cooler weather and water.

There is only one kayak on the market that fits this discription and that's the Liquid Logic - Saluda. I'm not sure what this kayak is made for, but it's not for fishing and with an understanding that the cockpit is so constructed that a spray skirt will not fit tight and causes leaks.

In my mind this would be the perfect answer to warm, cold, calm or wavey water kayak. Just change the the cockpit size to fit both fishing and light touring.
 

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Gary
Not sure, but the timing of the arrival of the Liquid Logic Manta Ray makes me suspect that it might have been the subject of this mysterious thread.

Are you still shopping? What part of the state are you in? Several outfitters will be hosting demo-days, starting around April here in the Triangle area...

You can put rod-holders on most sit-insides, but most folks choose sit-on-tops when fishing is on the top of the list. If you're sharing offshore-touring and fishing for the #1 purpose, I'm not sure that there exists a clear leader. Most Sit-on-Toppers use drysuits, wetsuits, or waders (and wading belts) to combat cold water.

Lefty
 

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I was just giving some insight from the original posed question. Although wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to wear a wet suit or waders while kayak fishing. I know there is a lot of contravercy on sit-in vs. sit-on. But wouldn't it be nice to have the best of both worlds.
 

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I was just giving some insight from the original posed question. Although wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to wear a wet suit or waders while kayak fishing. I know there is a lot of controversy on sit-in vs. sit-on. But wouldn't it be nice to have the best of both worlds.
Ah, I understand better now. Sure, best of all worlds would be great, as long it doesn't suffer from "master of none" syndrome.

You may have hit on another fundamental challenge -- "fishing" means lots of different things to lots of different people. I was about to comment that the 'light touring' role you mentioned should be discounted if the goal is "ideal fishing" -- but some folks like the idea of paddling maybe 5-10 miles to a good spot. Might be awful hard to design a boat that's equally well suited for a fishing spot 5-10 miles away as it is suited for exploring the flats around the corner from the ramp (ease of wading ingress/egress, etc). The Dorado fans might claim that they've come awful close (it does look like a pretty fast boat), but they'll still get wet when they dunk just like the rest of us SOT'ers...

Sure will be cool to see what new designs the dreamers come up with.

Lefty
 

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Defintely sit on top, you can put on waders in cold weather and be just fine. To narrow it down even more as far as a fishing platform: for lakes and other deep water the Hobie pedal drive yaks, for rivers where you can see u to a mid class set of rapids it has been hard to beat the Tarpon 120.
 

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Actually I don't find a sit on top good for fishing rivers to class III. I like my rods and tackle too much. Sit ins offer you a safer place to put your rods where they won't snag an overhanging limb and break. They are inherently more stable due to your lower center of gravity. They are more slippery regarding wind than the average rigged fishing kayak. You can put all your gear in front of you where you can see it and get to it easier. You can also shade your gear and legs from the sun much easier in a sit in. You can store your paddle, pfd, and a small cooler and some tackle inside your sit in. That leaves you a less cluttered garage or closet. For fishing in the salt marshes where you are going to be entering and exiting your boat in shallow water alot and you don't have to worry about tree limbs snagging your rods etc. Sit on tops have some strong advantages.
 

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Good points, my first was actually a sit inside, Mallard. We mainly fish the New River which is pretty open targeting the shoals where we hop out alot. There is a local river we hit that is a whole lot narrower and mostly tree lined. We simply lay the rods down. The best way for anyone to decide is to get out and try one of each. The main thing is are you comfortable and having fun.
 

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Would someone post when they are going to have demo days that would include Hobie's, looking to buy 3 this spring but want to try them out on water to decide which model.
Thanks
Joe
 

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It doesn't look like Provision Company has scheduled their demos yet, but last year they were in April. You might call the Charlotte store and see if they can give you an idea of what to expect. They do sell Hobies in addition to many other brands -- that's where I got my Manta Ray.

Great Outdoor Provision Co. - Outdoor Clothing and Gear - Charlotte, NC
 

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Congratulations on the anniversary. I'm working on year #12.
 
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