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Old 01-21-2015   #1
dgoods's Avatar
Montrose, Colorado, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1988
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 89
Predictable Playboat?

Looking to get back into kayaking after 5 or so year hiatus. I'm 45, kayaked for about 11 seasons and pinnacled out at moderate class 4.

My old favorite boats were things like my old Pyrhana Sub 0-7, kingpin, Necky gliss...

I want something with decent surfing hull speed, but also easy to paddle and roll.

Wife and I are moving to Montrose, so I'll be paddling the park there, Gunny gorge, class 3-4 stuff- want a one-quiver boat.


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Old 01-21-2015   #2
lmyers's Avatar
Buena Vista, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 4,207
Star series from Jackson.

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Old 01-21-2015   #3
Erie, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 6
I would strongly suggest the Dagger Jitsu, as it is a high performance playboat but still very easy to do everything in.

Wave performance in the boat is impeccable, the "Double-step Carve rail" combined with the stern release edge, continuous rocker profile, and defined parting line makes for fast, controlled, and fun surfing!

The Jitsu series also plays in holes extremely well, with most of the volume centered around the cockpit and slicey ends makes for a very well balanced and predictable boat while on edge.

The boat is also very stable going down river, I have taken it down 4+ rapids and I was very surprised with how well it performed! Dagger's New Contour Ergo outfitting is also an other thing that is amazing about this boat(and all dagger boat made by 2013) it is extremely easy to adjust and trim.
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Old 01-21-2015   #4
Favre's Avatar
Nampa, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 240
I'm not sure what type of boat to recommend, but you have the spectrum of river-running playboat to full-on playboat.

You may want a playful river-runner that has a little length to get through some Class 4, which you're looking in the sever foot range, or slightly longer. These boats can spin, even cartwheel, wave wheel, but have more speed to punch through downriver challenges. There are several of these boats out now. A decent used one for cheap that I like is the Wave Sport EZ (Or Big-EZ depending on your size), if you can find one. A modern one with better outfitting that has been getting great reviews is the Jackson Fun series. There are a couple other seven-foot'ish river-running play boats you might want to check out too.

If you are looking for a full-on modern playboat, I'd highly recommend a Star, All-Star, or SuperStar (again depending on your size) by Jackson Kayak. I've found this to be about the easiest modern playboat to paddle. You can even find one used a few years old that will be great. There are a dozen or so other models of this type of boat worth checking out, both new and used. This type of boat should be great at the whitewater parks, but you may or may not feel limited to class 3 because these six-foot boats have a downriver handicap compared to boats a foot or two longer.

Just FYI the biggest brands in new playful boats that you're probably looking for include Jackson, Wave Sport, Dagger, Pyranha, Fluid, Liquidlogic.. You can check out their boats online.

Good luck in your search!

Two things you might be willing to share:
-how much do you want to spend?
-height and size?
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Old 01-22-2015   #5
Duckins's Avatar
Montrose, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 173
I would agree with what Favre had to say. I really liked my Kingpin, but I got rid of it and got a Wave Sport EZG and then a Jackson Allstar. The EZG goes downriver well and the Allstar is a great playboat. But, if you liked the Kingpin I think you'd be happy with that boat again around Montrose. It was a good all-around river running playboat.
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