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Submitted: 05-30-2008 by alberto

Iím a new kayaker. Iím 5í9íí, 190 lbs. I purchased the OK Drifter (Angler Edition) at an ĎAcademy Sports & Outdoorsí store for $599. Iíve taken it out to West Galveston Bay twice already, and I canít wait to take it again.

I love the huge forward storage compartment; Iím able to fit a 30-liter gear bag in it with no problems. I have to use the 240 cm paddle because this kayak is very wide and Iím not very tall, but I can still paddle very fast. Iím also able to paddle against 15, or even 20 mph winds (though, not very fast). Itís not as fast as other kayaks. For example, when kayaking against the wind, I could not keep up with my brother-in-law (a first time paddler) using a WS Tarpon 120. However, we tried both kayaks and the Drifter was by far, more stable.

It is a wet ride (up to 1 1/2" of water in the foot well), but I donít mind because the weather down here is very warm. I bought the scupper stoppers and they do the job. Once installed, the only water that I saw was from the overwash from waves and the paddle itself. The other thing I don't like about it is the small tank well. However, I bought a small Igloo cooler and it fits perfectly. The Drifter also has 2 flush-mount rod holders, so I don't need a milk crate with PVC pipes to hold more rods.

Surfing
I took the Drifter to the surf just to see how it handled the big waves. I was totally surprised to see how well it cuts through 4-5 foot waves. It was incredible! Iíd never thought I could see myself jumping over big waves with a kayak before. I beat the hell out of this kayak for about 2 hours in these waves and I was actually able to surf with it at the beach. After I was done surfing, before I loaded it back onto the truck, I checked how much water was inside; surprisingly, there was almost none (not even 1/2 cup). I was able to dry the inside with a small rag. My brother-in-lawís Tarpon 120 had about 2 cups of sea water inside. He also wiped out in the surf about 10 times; on the other hand, my Drifter only threw me overboard twice. Next time, Iím going deep-sea fishing!

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