Submitted: 09-28-2006 by wade777
This is my first kayak/canoe or any boat for that matter so this review might not carry much weight with more experienced paddlers. I've enjoyed my explorer in a variety of conditions this past year and would definitely recommend it as a starter boat / camping boat for the storage space challenged individuals such as myself. I ordered the 420x Explorer as the 'Pro' package which has the upgraded seats and such, and I will say that I have not been dissapointed in the overall comfort the boat has. I researched many boats and read through Theboatpeople.com website, which has great info and isn't all that keen on these Sea Eagles, but still decided on this boat for what I needed to use it for -
1)It's a helluva load hauler at a listed 855lbs and I have no reason so far to believe this wrong - I've placed 2 giant coolers full, all of my not-so-compact camping gear, my girlfriend up front and my small dog with no problems. I haven't read of another IK in this price range that can claim that.
2) I needed a VERY stable boat with some versatility since my girlfriend isn't much of a swimmer and is just overall afraid of the water (She's slowly getting more comfortable since being in this boat with me). I also wanted to be able to try out different conditions paddling, which includes some whitewater - and this boat, while not too maneuverable, has fit my needs.
My only complaint is the speed it paddles and difficulty in a stiff headwind / crosswind, however with 2 paddlers we've been just fine with 20kts wind - didn't move fast, but reached our destination.
No inflatable can fill all the needs, but if camping, load hauling or just a friendly stable boat that is extremely rugged is tops on your list, this might be the boat for you.