Originally Posted by johnovice
Did you notice any performance differences between your Lynx and the Sotars? -- difficult comparison I guess given that the Sotars were not identical and the paddlers were also different.
Lynx boats have more of a square footprint, not a really fast boat, but my paddling style is to use the current to my advantage and use the least amount of strokes. You get wet more in the Lynx, it has way less rock than the Sotars. Stars are a bitch to flip back over and re-enter compared to the Aire boats. The Rocker is great until the boat is upside down, it takes considerably more force to right a Sotar than any Aire boat. I can right an Aire and re-enter it pretty damn fast. One of the swims taken on that run ended up causing the swimmer to enter and swim the entire rapid known as Pinball on the North Umpqua. He flipped on a wave called Alligator on the rapid prior. I could have been back in my boat by the time he let go of his kayak and swam the class IV.
Sotars seem un-affected by crossing strong eddy lines and currents. I had to use a lot of body english to cross some tough current transitions without flipping, more stability issues there than on the actual drops. Also, I think it is harder to fill a Sotar with water. The rocker is the reason, I never seemed to fill my wife's 10 footer up, and I've heard those are intended for up to 180 lb paddlers. I'm wayyyy over that. Really, unless you found a REAL good deal on a Sotar, the Lynx is a more budget friendly boat that will take you a few years to reach the limits of.
Also, the bladder system in the Aire is great, I've never had a leak, but it takes very little effort to make an on river repair with the Aire. The Aires are also lighter than the Sotars. Also, I think the Aires draft less water, due to the fact that they have less rocker, putting more tube and floor in the water than the rocker heavy Sotar SL.