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Submitted: 07-03-2013 by LagoonSurfer
I've been paddling for 8 years now, mostly Sea Kayaks but also a SOT. I've always wanted to get onto a SurfSki for fitness and also some racing when I felt like it. I picked up the SPORT lay-up of this boat this weekend. Here are some impressions right off the bat and after a first run today. *I surf also and sort of walked away from paddling for 2 years and just recently started getting back into it, so I was really wondering just how much core balance I'd lost.
Stellar states that they strive for especially stable boats. They did definitely nail that part. I hadn't paddled a boat under 22" at the beam in some time and after an initial second or two of twitchiness I calmed down and fell right into a calm and stable rhythm with her. The stability was definitely on the boat side at least as much as my balance. It's not hard to get comfortable in this ski quickly. It was also my first time using a Winged Paddle (yep -- learning 2 new things at once -- figured I'd get it all over with up front). 11 mph winds out of SSW on the Indian River Lagoon. Moderate chop. I did not swim once. I almost should have just to practice re-entry and will have to do that if she never does toss me.
Build quality is VERY good and so is the price of these ski's, especially the model I picked. All the fittings and the finish were flawless. Everything hardware-wise was perfect. Just great craftsmanship.
My one and only gripe (and this may be just the nature of surf skis that you have to deal with) is that it's definitely slippery when wet and you really have to figure out where to grab her. No cockpit area grab-spots or handles. I may rig something because I definitely don't want to drop her.
Speed: Lots and lots and lots of speed. Leans well and secondary stability is ROCK SOLID.
I will be using this boat to cross-train and fitness paddle in and will start doing some distance this weekend. Yep!
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