Submitted: 08-04-2008 by hiker69
I recently bought a Swifty 9.5 on sale at Dick's for $269. I often fish from a kayak and normally paddle an Ocean Kayak Prowler 13 Angler Edition. With my setup, that boat requires the installation of a truck hitch extension for hauling. However, I was looking for something small enough to simply toss on the back of my truck, go paddle, get some exercise, and maybe fish a little.
I have paddled the Swifty on a couple of lakes so far, and it is pretty much exactly what I expected. It's not extremely fast, but it is certainly fast enough for small lakes, ponds, and rivers. I wouldn't make any 10 mile treks in it on open water, but for short jaunts, it's great.
The kayak is very stable. The bow does tend to push sideways just slightly with each paddle stroke, but overall, for such a short boat, it tracks well. It turns on a dime and stops quickly. The seat is comfortable enough for short paddles (1 to 3 hours), and it adjusts very easily. There is ample storage behind the seat for a dry bag, water, anchor, etc.
The boat rides amply high even with a fairly heavy load. It is rated for 350 pounds, 100 pound more than the Perception Blast. That buoyancy works out well for me, since I'm 6'1" and 200 pounds, and I usually take some gear with me when I paddle.
One of these days, I'll probably go for one of those speedy touring boats, but right now, the Swifty is just fine for what I want/need. As long as you know you're buying a recreational kayak and not something else, the Swifty will treat you right. It is a well made little kayak for the money.