Submitted: 12-03-2009 by Lee Chamberlain
The Picolo by Wilderness Systems was and is one of the finer boats. The one here was originally purchased for my son when he was four years old.
For a while the boat sat under the house as my son is now 6 feet tall. I have often paddled this boat on day trips and agreeably the lack of a rear hatch does establish limits. The boat handles well, turns smartly and runs water sweetly.
I weigh in at 164.4 and am 5'8" and sometimes my friends scoff at the little boat as I paddle it. However they rarely scoff after seeing it perform. As the owner of 11 sea kayaks it's one of my favorites. I have used it in just about every paddling environment - found it to be responsive and will heel well, rides a wave very well and has no problem on a carve down a wave face.
At 13'3" it's a keeper and a real shame it's no longer made. Over time some fading has shown but then again so have most boats as they grow older. Its lightweight and smart lines make this boat one for the records. I have actually used it on paddles overnight traveling extremely light, sleeping bag, bivy sack and heater meals tucked in a waterproof drybag. Used it for getting into tighter areas of the wetlands and actually deck mounted a camera.
It's a great little boat that gives a lot, weighs little and has provided me with some of my best paddling memories.