Submitted: 07-22-2002 by Steven
I just bought a Prijon Kodiak this past weekend; my prior sea kayak was a Aquaterra Scimitar. I looked at the Necky Looksha IV, CD Storm, and the CD Sirocco. My favorite place to paddle is the Texas Gulf Coast, where there is almost always a strong onshore breeze, so I was looking for a kayak that would pose little wind resistance and track straight as a rail. I'm 5'11", 210 lbs, and the Necky was just a little too tight for me, and the amount of rocker aided maneuverability, but at the cost of tracking. The CD Storm seemed okay, but the hull was a bit too flimsy. I liked the Sirocco until I saw one at my local paddle shop that was returned due to a broken seat. The high, sweeping bow also looked like it would act as a sail in beam winds. The Kodiak fits me very well, the hull material is strong, there's ample storage, and there's a lot of "niceties" thrown in. Mooring lines fore and aft, full perimeter lines, a hex key stored in the cockpit to adjust the seat and thigh braces, and the gas pedal foot braces are awesome. When I first took the Kodiak out it was a little tippy, but it just took some time to get used to. The first day was on a local lake with a lot of power boats (too many in fact), so I didn't really get a chance to paddle up to speed. The following day I went to another lake which doesn't allow power boats (yeah!). The Kodiak is FAST for a plastic boat. My brother has a Perception Captiva, and I was able to put a lot of distance between us very quickly. The Kodiak also tracks extremely well, I bought mine with a rudder and have yet to use it. Although it tracks very well, it's also quite maneuverable with a good sweep stroke and lean, but, you REALLY have to lean it to make a quick, smooth, tight turn. If you're looking for a touring "play boat", the Kodiak isn't for you. If you're looking for a solid, comfortable, well appointed sea kayak that you can put some serious miles on (without a lot of course corrections), the Kodiak is your boat. As for aesthetics, I like the looks of the Kodiak, but aesthetics are a matter of opinion and really shouldn't matter unless you want something that will look good on your roof rack. Aesthetics won't make you go faster, keep you safe and comfortable, nor will keep your hull from oil canning (blow molding ROCKS!). Also, the deck pack nets work very well. I didn't have to worry about losing my water bottle or bilge pump when I practiced wet exits.
If you're serious about paddling, don't base your purchase off looks, base if off functionality, comfort, and features. There's no other plastic Kayak out there that has the features of the Kodiak, but again, if you're looking for a touring "play boat" look elsewhere.