Submitted: 03-12-2013 by Mike
I have a Tracer 165 coloured orange with the SmartTrak rudder system. This rudder raises and lowers so easily and is spring loaded when deployed to keep it from flowing out behind. The rudder is small but works very well. This is a very smart looking fun craft which seems to be well built. It moves through the water at a reasonable pace with very little physical effort and increasing the paddling effort gives only a marginal increase in speed.
A great little boat which is easy to handle off the water and a great fun boat for protected waters. First timers may want a bit more initial stability. Secondary stability seems good.
If you are in a confused chop the kayak seems very unsteady and was no where near as reassuring as other boats I have paddled. It seems to handle bigger waves better than chop. The hatch covers go on and off almost too easily and I wondered how secure they were at sea during capsize or rolling.
In short a great boat with its light weight and maneuverability for protected waters but you should have another for the tough stuff.
I have rated it 8 but would be 9 in quiet water and a 6 in the rough stuff.