42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Sevylor Tahiti Kayak (Sports)
I'm experienced with a kayak, but bought this to give my four-year-old and seven-year-old a taste of canoeing. I was somewhat concerned about how it would handle, especially as some people said you must have the skeg to help it stay straight, but I was delighted to discover that wasn't necessary in the slightest, even using the boat on a strong tide and with a stiff breeze (good job really, since absolutely no-one seems to have any skegs in stock any more and don't seem to expect any until 2012!).
The Tahiti will turn on a sixpence but is quite happy to keep a straight line. I can see how beginners might have to practice that (my brother-in-law had a go and did struggle a bit), but with perseverance you'd soon get the hang of it.
It inflates incredibly quickly with the Sevylor hand pump. I was amazed how easy it was. Some people have said it was a long reach over the sides of the boat with the paddles but, to be honest, I didn't find that for an instant. There's plenty of clearance and you sit perfectly high up. I'm only just touching 5'7" and I was very comfortable.
I'm very enthusiastic about this product - its performance far exceeded my expectations, even using it on the sea in an estuary with a notoriously fast tide. It's equally good if you stick your seat in the middle position and go it alone.
It deflates quickly and rolls up in no time. The trickiest part of the whole procedure was figuring out how to fasten the straps round it. The instructions on this are poor, to say the least, but search YouTube because there are videos that demo it and it all becomes clear quickly. I thought the backpack idea was a bit of a gimmick, but it turned out to be invaluable to get the kayak to and from the car with all of the other paraphernalia and is perfectly comfortable for a ten or 15-minute stint.
We got the Sevylor split paddles which I used joined together. They were light, effective and comfortable to handle.
All-in-all, I'm delighted with this purchase. I was hugely surprised at how good the Tahiti is. As the boys get older we might just buy a second one for whole-family outings!