Submitted: 06-23-2003 by emilbus420
This is my first kayak and I l ove it!! This is an older model, similar to the Sea Dart, but a little longer. I have been using canoes as long as I can remember, and this boat is a pleasant change! I bought the kayak from my neighbor, and started out paddling on the St. Johns river. After I had some practice in turning and balancing, I moved out onto Lake Monroe (mainly when it was choppy).
I had absolutely no problems in 2-3 ft swells, just make sure that you have an absorbent rag (artificial chamois) between the seating area and the rest of the cockpit to keep any water that enters (mainly from paddling) from reaching your rear end!
A supporting backrest doesn't hurt when it comes to comfort. My rear hatch seal is halfway torn out, so I do get leakage after wiping out a few times in larger (5-6') ocean waves. Heritage replaces these seals at no cost by the way. Besides for the small (8" front, 10" rear) hatches, limited easy-to-reach storage, and the metal foot-pad rail (which tends to cut my ankles when I surf/wipe-out), this kayak is excellent quality and design. I am not afraid to take this craft anywhere, and I will be buying another (same model) for my girlfriend! Since I am 6'3", I don't use the foot pads, so the rails are just in the way for me,,,,so I put 1.5' pieces of clear PVC (slit lengthwise) over them to protect my feet/ankles/legs!! I also just ordered a PacificAction.com sail, and will post about it once it's installed and tested! Canoes started my madness, and this kayak is everything I imagined a solo craft to be! By the way, I have tried comparable SOTs, and even though there were m any positive points to them, they just didn't compare when it comes down to overall convenience and versatility!! I am always looking for paddling companions for the ocean, any larger lake, or just enjoying a slow moving river or creek!