Submitted: 07-10-2000 by Michael Heikka
The Looksha IV is a tough, fast, heavy, sharp handling boat. It tracks well, turns well, is built like a tank, and carries a moderate amount of cargo. But if you are larger than 5'10" or 180 lbs, you may not like this boat. It has deep (far rearward) thigh braces and a low front deck (made lower by a recessed "trough" for deck rigging) that makes it difficult for larger people to get into the boat, especially after a wet exit. People with feet *GT size 10 will not be able to wear paddling shoes inside the boat, because of the low deck and rigging trough and rigging fasteners. Barefoot paddling can result in cold, numb feet or sleepy, tingly legs. Combine that with a high seat bottom and hard, high seatback (that falls out and dangles in the way after a capsize) and you have an uncomfortable posture for 6'1 200 lb paddlers. The hard, high seatback is simply miserable. The chined hull can make the boat react strongly to some wakes and waves, which can be unnerving for beginning (or very tired) paddlers, and annoying for the rest. On paper, the boat was perfect for me. But after paddling them intermittently for about 2 years, I passed. Many people rave about them, and they really hold up well. But the more time I spent in the Looksha IV, the more uncomfortable it became. This boat either works for you or it doesn't.