Submitted: 07-30-2007 by jlandfair
This is my second kayak that I have purchased in a little over a year. Overall it is a great kayak for the money. The drop-down skeg is a huge plus. My previous kayak had neither a skeg nor rudder and the difference this one makes is huge.
I use mine at least once a week, mostly on a tidal river. Recently, however, I took it into the Currituck Sound (Outer Banks of North Carolina) in choppy, 3' - 4' swells. It handled great. There are some important features or aspects though that I wish I had known though prior to purchasing (although I still would have bought it).
First, this kayak does not have bulkheads compartmentalizing the interior of the kayak. This is important because there is the very real potential for it to sink if it were to become fully swamped. Float bags are commercially available that can help counteract this issue. Another important use for bulkheads is that they separate your storage compartments.
The Pursuit 140DLX contains two "watertight" storage compartments. The first one is just in front of the cockpit. On the outside it looks like a typical screw on, watertight lid, however all the lid is really sealing is a nylon bag that hangs down into the inside of the kayak (the bag does not stay hanging very well either). The second compartment is fairly large, but very shallow and can't hold much. Neither compartment is really fully watertight and Pelican to their credit does not promise them to be. Truth be told, these compartments are more complimentary to day trips which the kayak itself is only intended for. There is ample store space inside the kayak too which can be filled nicely with dry bags if say you were going on an overnight camping trip.
A second factor to consider is the weight. Although it is comparable to other kayaks of it's size and material, at 57+ pounds it is fairly heavy. I use a kayak cart and that helps greatly. I still need help getting it on top of the car. Hully Rollers by Yakima also help with that.
If you want a true expedition kayak, this is not what you should be buying. If you want a fun, sturdy and very stable recreational kayak with the look and feel of a larger touring style kayak, then this is a good choice. It is especially good for the price, which is nearly half of the other brands in the same class such as Perception's Carolina.
Overall, I am very happy with this kayak. If you're looking at buying your first kayak, then I would strongly recommend this one over a shorter recreational kayak. You will get a better feel for what a longer, larger kayak can do for you. The stability and roominess of the cockpit is very inviting and will keep you longing to get back out on the water.