Submitted: 10-06-2010 by oregonpaddler
A follow-up on my previous Loon 111 review:
I had the Loon out a few times and it is rock solid. Initial and secondary stability is great on Class 1 and 11 waters. Is it as fast as my Cayuga 14? No, because it's a shorter boat. Does it turn easier? Yes, because it's a shorter boat. Tracking is pretty good, but again, it's short and does wander just a bit with stronger strokes, but it's not a big issue with me. The seat on my model is on a slider mechanism, but will slide back unexpectedly unless my feet are pressed against the foot braces.
I still believe this is a great value if you can find one. The only caveat is this: I bought a bungee-style Extrasport spray skirt from OT and due to the larger open cockpit,it's a bear to put on. If your seat is in the middle of the adjustment range, it's hard to put the skirt on while sitting in the kayak--you need a helper or very long arms to attach it. On solo trips, if I need the skirt, I clamp it near the front of the cockpit with two small spring clamps and then work the skirt around and to the back. I think this is a problem with many large cockpit openings, regardless of the brand. Also, due to the long stretch the skirt has to go, water will pool a bit right in front of you as the skirt sags.
Other than that, this is a very good little kayak. I believe it's a better buy used than the new single-layer plastic offerings from OT.