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Submitted: 07-11-2003 by Marchessa

We have two IK-116's and we LOVE them. We live just north of Boston on the ocean and can use the kayaks for a quick trip around our island on a summer evening. We threw them in the trunk and drove up to Maine for the 4th and paddled on a couple of lakes and a river. Last September, we checked them with our luggage on a trip to northern California and used them on lakes, rivers and in the Pacific. Every paddler we pass within conversation distance wants to know about our inflatables; I'd like to think Stearns has profited from our excursions.

There are two downsides from our perspective. The first is the leaky skirt issue that several other reviewers have commented on. The other is drag, especially in choppy water (such as a lake churned up by wind or lots of power boats). If we're with a group of hard-shell in choppy conditions, we generally lag behind a bit (not the case on completely flat water). Still, these things are very minor compared to the portability, stability and freedom to have them in the trunk of our car and decide on the spur of the moment to enjoy one of our local lakes/ponds/rivers.

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