Submitted: 09-24-2007 by Bradshawm
I am not going to write a lengthy review because pretty much all the good and bad has been said. In Summary, the 145 is slower than the 140, very stable, tracks good even without a rudder, the hatches leak, and is, overall, a very good buy for the money, especially when it goes on sale.
What I want to address is the hatch covers. When I took my safety class, we used the 145 and the Tempest 170 with the same problems on both. Whether doing an assisted rescue, or a self rescue, it was very difficult to get back in the kayak without going over the top of the rear hatch, and invariable, the cover came off, collapsed, or the seal was broken, and on the next go around it leaked very heavily. I ended up including in my rescue, the step of replacing or re-sealing the hatch while laying on my stomach with my feet in the cockpit before I could turn around and slide into the cockpit. This alone makes it totally unsuited for serious touring of any kind, because if someone were to go over in rougher waters. It would be easy to swamp the back end and quite a chore to balance on the back trying to fix the hatch before securing oneself into the cockpit. If they were to fix this, I could probably give this kayak a much higher rating.