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Old 08-04-2008   #11
Skywalker Construction, LLC
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 67
Do not get the 8.1 Get the 8.5, it is better to float on top of the water. Move the seat as far forward as possible. At 78 gallons The 8.5 is not as big as you may think.

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Old 08-07-2008   #12
phoenix, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1970
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 18
how about the jefe

compared to the nomad or habitat. I have read a lot of good and a lot of bad about the jefe. Seems like people either love or hate them a lot. Yet on some of the creek races I see lots of boaters using them.

Anyone else had the problem with stern squirts with the habitat?

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Old 08-07-2008   #13
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,032
I normally paddle a Jefe and just recently tried a Nomad 8.5. I'm the lower weight end for the 8.5. I still prefer the Jefe, maybe because it's what I'm used to, but the 8.5 was pretty nice. The Jefe has more of an autoboof (more rocker I think), and feels more responsive - quicker movements. The Nomad was pretty impervious to getting thrown off line, got pushed around less and felt a lot less prone to getting stern squirted. The Nomad also has some wicked resurfacing action - incredibly slow and stable. The Nomad is easier to roll and has more initial stability. Both have good speed. The Jefe has a characteristic of riding over stuff which I haven't felt in any other boats. They're both really nice designs - I'm not sure why anyone would dog either one.

Haven't ever paddled the Habitat.
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Old 08-11-2008   #14
phoenix, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1970
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 18
well I ordered the Habitat. I have to say after all my research everyone loves all the boats and everyone had something to say bad about all the boats. I did order the large in hopes that I float a bit higher.

I didn't go with the Nomad because of just a little extra weight. I suppose that would make for a stronger boat but I am not going to go off of the 80 foot waterfalls.

I just didn't want to carry a creek boat that weighs 45 pounds a million miles. Yet It was Everyone seems to love the nomad. I had a few that said they went from the Nomad to the Habitat and liked the change. Then I had others that swore by the Nomad. I have to say I have a Dagger boat and the plastic has held up amazingly. I hit all the rocks I can, drag the boat and it still keeps going. If the Habitat can do half as well I will be happy. The jefe seems to be a very popular boat. Yet most said it was harder to roll because the seat sits higher. The nomad was supposedly the easiest to roll. The Habitat second and then the Jefe. Or course there are those that would put it in the opposite order. I did notice that the Nomads were sure winning the races. I did also notice that the other boaters weren't that far behind. The Nomad boaters just might be better or had a better day. Yet the races show the nomads out on top every time. I also know that Dagger doesn't seem to be very correct on their weights and the gallon displacement. Maybe none of the boat manufactures are correct. Thats a shame. So I will paddle this Habitat and see how I like it. I know I will like it better when I am carring it anyways because it is lighter. Habitat sure doesn't have a very good sales pitch. I tried to find good videos on the boats and the Daggers won in that area. Partly because they were winning all the races.
I had certain stores really pitch the Habitat. I only heard one complaint that there needed to be more volume in the Habitat in the rear. It could only be a small amount if any difference. I am used to a GT 8.1 dagger so I have a lot less volume as we speak.
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Old 08-17-2008   #15
phoenix, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1970
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 18
I bought the habitat...I do love this boat
Ok...I did the two mile hike here is the results! I am glad its not any heavier than it is...
1st day kayaking a small creek. Wow...I love this boat. I found it very comfortable. I asked a bunch of people if I should get the large 80 or the smaller 74 and I am very glad I bought the 80. It really powered me through the water slides with holes at the bottom. I found it very easy to turn. Storage behind the seat was great and I could fit stuff in there really easy. I love the placement of the handles for tieing down the boat. Way better than the Dagger placement. More handy I should say. For some reason the 8'4" boat Habitat seemed shorter on the water than my 8'1" dagger GT. turned quicker than the Gt. Having rounded boat corners sure made it a lot easier on the creek than with the hard chines that my GT 8.1 has.
The hull speed was surprising as well. I was able to paddle into things I haven't been able to paddle my GT 8.1 that has a planing hull. I was able to side surf in the Habitat in a big hole so easy. No edges to grab so I could lean over into the oncoming stream farther than in my gt. It just got in the hole and stayed there and I surfed away. A big boat like this with high Volume is much easier to get stuck in a hole as well.
This boat rolls like a champ. I had read that the Nomad rolls easier than the Habitat. I can tell you that this boat is super easy to roll and since I have never been in a Nomad I can't give any input there.
The outfitting is comfortable and easy to adjust.
One nice thing I noticed was that when I paddled my GT 8.1 on the same creek, the back end would get stuck under when I was climbing up and over a rock. As the back end on the GT was lower volume and the pressure of the water behind held it down...In the Habitat with the Higher Volume the Volume keeps the rear up high and helps you to get over the rock. I didn't get near as tired paddling this boat as I do in my GT.
I am looking forward to paddling this boat on some big water. When I stuck the habitat under a water fall the water shed off like a champ and I was able to easily stay in control of the boat. With my GT 8.1 doing the same thing, it was much harder to stay there and also threw my boat around so much I didn't feel comfortable doing it.
I did a seal launch off of a 8 foot or so ledge. That was fun....Even though due to bad technique I penciled it straight in!!..
I am happy with my purchase....

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