-- Last Updated: Sep-27-13 8:40 PM EST --
I am eyeing up to kayaks this weekend for an upgrade. Both are used.
Kayak #1 is a 2012 (or maybe a 2013) Perception Expression 15 for around $700 from a guy on craigslist.
Kayak #2 is a 2013 Dagger Alchemy 14L for (in a color I'm not crazy about, Lime) for $900 plus tax.
For my purposes, the boat will be used for one and two night paddle camping trips in various rivers in Maryland as well as reservoirs and the bay as well as day trips/fitness paddling in the same areas. I am moving up from an Old Town Drigo 12 which is just too slow and relaxed for me. I'd like to learn how to edge and do rolls. The seat in the Perception will likely be replaced by a backband. I will also be getting a skirt at some point for either.
Which boat is better suited for my needs? Both will probably be gone tomorrow. I was set on the Perception until I found the Dagger on sale.
Full Size Sail Rig
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for an all-around day touring boat|
Posted by: sapien on Sep-27-13 8:57 PM (EST)
I'd say go with the Perception Expression, and spend the extra $200 on a decent paddle. It's probably a bit faster and will hold more gear than the Alchemy. The Alchemy would be the more fun & maneuverable boat in rough water, but if the color bugs you, you'll always have second thoughts about it.
that is true|
Posted by: mdwaters on Sep-27-13 9:08 PM (EST)
Posted by: Fred_Randall on Sep-27-13 8:58 PM (EST)
Thats why I didn't want the lime|
Posted by: mdwaters on Sep-27-13 9:11 PM (EST)
but they sold out of the used red and blue ones. I don't mind being visible but I don't want excess eye strain, even with sunglasses, on all day paddles.
Posted by: Fred_Randall on Sep-28-13 11:42 AM (EST)
You're looking at Potomac Paddlesports, aren't you?
have an Aklchemy|
Posted by: Peter-CA on Sep-27-13 9:36 PM (EST)
I have an Alchemy (not Lime though). Good boat, but can be hard to pack enough for 2 or more nights, I have done it, but it is hard. But it is the boat I use as my daily driver (I have a 17'6" Valley as an expedition boat also, but I haven't used that in a year and a half now). Did an overnight camping trip last weekend with the Alchemy.
Posted by: mdwaters on Sep-27-13 9:44 PM (EST)
However, when I kayak camp it is almost always with two or three friends so the load is split pretty well and I generally pack light and small. Hammock, a few snacks, whiskey, freeze dried food, water, spare set of clothes, along with other odds and ends. I backpack as well so I know how to keep things light and compact!
a thought on colors-|
Posted by: tdaniel on Sep-27-13 10:14 PM (EST)
bright is good. Easier to see in a rescue situation, easier to spot if stolen or lost. Bright boat/gear is a real advantage for being seen by a motorboat, or pinned under the water, or for finding your way back to your campsite, or spotting someone separated on a portage in woods, or for not accidently leaving your stuff behind. All that bein' said, oolor shouldn't be the deciding factor for a boat purchase. I'd be more concerned with how it paddled. Which boat is better for you? I have no idea. Which color is better? the one most easily seen. Too bad neither is hunter orange.
Brand new Alchemy $900|
Posted by: trvlrerik on Sep-27-13 10:56 PM (EST)
Just read an e-mail from REI close outs on all paddling gear.
You're near a lot of ww rivers, |
Posted by: ezwater on Sep-27-13 11:09 PM (EST)
a number of which are very good for kayak camping. If you don't buy one of those used things, check out Dagger's new whitewater load carrier. A bit slow, maybe, but undoubtedly much more agile than what you're considering.
I Have the Alchemy|
Posted by: Kudzu on Sep-28-13 5:59 AM (EST)
I ran across a used Alchemy a couple years back. It was a dealer's demo/rental in very good condition. They only asked $600. I'm a bit leggy so I moved the seat back some to get a perfect fit. I like the way it turns, rolls, edges, and it's stable enough to loan out to the less experienced. Beware; unless they changed something the rear hatch cover is going to let a lot of water in. Use dry bags.
Dagger Alchemy all day|
Posted by: Ravenwing on Sep-28-13 12:27 PM (EST)
all ways, no contest...for me anyway. Better construction, better outfitting, esp. the seat, better plastic. Better design (see more below).
Where for $800?|
Posted by: Jbead on Sep-30-13 11:49 AM (EST)
I'm in the market for an Alchemy 14.0L; where are you seeing them for $800?
Posted by: Ravenwing on Sep-30-13 3:00 PM (EST)
and not advertised on the internets.
I ended up going with the perception|
Posted by: mdwaters on Sep-28-13 5:32 PM (EST)
It was such a good deal, the seat felt right, and I fit in it well. If I don't like it, I got it for cheap enough that I can sell it early in the season next year for the same, if not more, than I paid.
Posted by: Fred_Randall on Sep-28-13 8:50 PM (EST)
...my thread on the IR backband on a Tsunami. Helpful stuff in there.
Posted by: jesse59 on Oct-02-13 3:51 PM (EST)
Ridiculous name aside I really like the boat. It's not the typical boring Perception day touring kayak when it comes to performance.