Submitted: 07-08-2003 by David Sullins
I was looking for a compromise boat to use in paddle rivers. I looked at white water boats and paddled several. I just hate paddling them because they made me work so hard to keep the boat straight. I paddled several rec. boats at demo days and liked several and was convinced that I wanted a rec. boat rather than a white water boat. I bought the Zydeco new after buying a used WW boat and I love the Z. I am 215#, 6' tall and the Z fit me better than all the other rec. boats. Some of the others sliced through the water better, and were quieter ( I agree with some one else in here that the Z splashes quite a bit when cruising and Dagger could have shaped the bow differently and fixed this, I am sure).I bought some thigh braces for some other boat and outfitted my Z with them and some padding to take up some of the room around my knees. I think I will be able to roll this yak as easily as the Corsica WW boat that I used in my first roll class and was able to roll it. I love the boat and would like to buy another one used and get rid of the Corsica. I like paddling moving water rather than flat water and have not had this on the Potomac but have had it on several small streams in Maryland and it handles very well.
The WW people were telling me that I did not want to get a rec. boat, but I have had the Z about 2 months (with a neoprene skirt) and it is a great compromise boat. I wanted a short boat, basically a 1 person canoe with a spray skirt and this is about the perfect boat for me. WW boats scare me, as I am not able to keep them going where I want them to go and they are more difficult to exit than I like. I do not want to get sideways near a rock or ledge that I wanted to go at a different angle. I think this boat will be able to control. The Z is very easy to get in and out of. If I turn it over, getting out is still easy because it is so roomy. I do not have to slide it off like an RPM max or Corsica. I do hope to learn to roll it and stay in it most of the time, or not tip over. I look at this boat like an enduro motorcycle (trail bike that is street legal) It is not the best for WW or Cruising but is a good compromise.