Submitted: 04-29-2010 by mushinaiki
I would like to start the review by saying that I am a large guy 6'5" and 270lb with size 15 feet. Suffice to say it has been a little challenging to find a boat that doesn't handle like a barge, yet is able to fit my frame, and especially my feet. The Assateague is the only boat that I have been able to get into bum first!!
The out fitting is great, although the Immersion Research backband spins on wet entries, and needs to be tied into the combing, I find the foot pegs uncomfortable, although this is the same in all boats....why do manufacturers make boats for bigger guys then assume that the footpegs are appropriate for all sizes???? They just make the feet cramp up, so I will foam out the bulkhead, but I would rather I didn't have too.
The boat paddles really nicely and tracks true. Although others say it is a fast boat, I find it only medium paced, although I shouldn't have paddled it after a Rockpool GT, as that is a fast boat and just made the Impex feel slower. Initial stability is great for a British style boat, and better than my Aquanaught HV, my other boat.
The boat is able to stay on edge for ages and is easy to balance there, with the edge almost feeling like it wants to "bounce" you back into the boat, rather than dump you into the drink. It cuts through swell easily and is very dry to paddle bouncing over smaller swell. The boat surfs OK although smaller swell that the Aquanaught picks up easily just washes past the Assateague. That said the Aquanaught is just about the best boat I have paddled in trailing sea.
The Assateague performs true to the paddlers input, and although it isn't the fastest or the best at catching waves or even the best capacity, it fulfills the need in the market for a true BIG BOYS BOAT that can handle the rough, the surf and the rock gardens, and at least get us closer to the enjoyment had by those Midgets ridding matchsticks that once carved us up in the surf.