Submitted: 09-29-2004 by wrighton
I just bought my second Tempest 165. Why would I need more than one? Yes, I've become one of those people whom one kayak is not enough. I bought a Tempest 165pro earlier in the year (see my review in February 2004). I still love that kayak. I had an opportunity to paddle in the surf and go caving on the Oregon coast early in the summer. It was the first time in the 18 months that I've paddled that I got knocked over, a couple of times. I didn't like the gel coat getting scratched on the beach, or the thought of something worse happening. I need this kayak every weekend and cannot tolerate it being out of commission.
I do plan on going out into the surf a lot more and I need a buddy boat for one of my teens so it seemed very reasonable to get a used plastic kayak. A quick assessment of kayaks out there for my size ruled out all but the Necky Chatham 16 and the WS Tempest 165. The Chathamís bow is very maneuverable it would be a fun boat in the surf, but the kayak doesn't track as well as the Tempest. Since I wasn't buying a kayak just for the surf I chose the Tempest 165. It was a good decision since the Tempest 165pro behaved wonderfully in the surf, maintains a nice speed and carries plenty of camping equipment too.
The plastic kayak responds just as nicely as my fiberglass kayak. It might even feel floatier? It edges just as nicely and rolling is a treat. I checked for leaks and found none. Hopefully WS has worked out the first year production bugs? The hatch covers seem too easy to get on and off compared to my fiberglass model, but the bungees take care of the fit well and I'll always have float bags installed when playing in the surf zone or crossing the surf zone. My fiberglass boat has a custom placed forward bulkhead so I don't use foot pegs. I'd like to change out the foot pegs in the plastic Tempest for more comfort, but that is the only thing I'd change.
What a lucky gal I am to have two Tempests. Why then am I dreaming about adding a Pygmy Artic Tern 14 and a surf ski to my fleet?