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Submitted: 04-24-2000 by TimW

The Alto was my first open-water kayak after ten years paddling all kinds of water in a beat-up 13-foot whitewater relic of the 1970s. I grew up in small sailboats, but have always loved kayaks for their simple versatility. I have to admit, I judged the Alto by eye and just bought it. It is a good size for rivers and inlets, but has a fine shape for rough open water. I've paddled in winds above 30, with a nasty lake chop, steep and close-set, and in saltwater with a stiff seabreeze and waves about 2-3 feet as well. I look forward to more. Any speed lost to shorter length is compensated by maneuverability when the water gets squirrelly.
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