Research Kayaks in the Buyers' Guide!
Select Kayak to View in Buyers' Guide
The Whisper CL rides smoothly in the water. So far we have done a number of day paddles + one overnighter on fresh water. That includes one really rough windstorm on a Tennessee lake. It steers very well for a boat with such a long keel. There's enough space in the compartments for a two- or three day summer trip. Cargo space is a sacrifice when moving to the tandem boat. The hull appears to take minor bumps and scrapes in stride. We did add KeelEazy, and believe that KE was a great investment.
My wife required very little adjustment or minicel in the bow cockpit to make her very comfortable. I took a little more work because the hull beam in the stern cockpit is pretty wide. We have since added a perimeter line to the full length of the hull, as well as a spare paddle holders and a kayak flag on the stern.
Paddling has been smooth so far. We have not had an issue in coordinating our paddle strokes. It is sometimes a challenge for me to explain something from the stern to her in the bow. The seats are close enough for us to hear; however, a lot gets lost in translation if the bow paddler can't turn to see the hand- or facial expressions of the stern paddler.
Things that I wish were better were the hatches - soft rubber - and the addition of a perimeter line.
We find the boat to be quite comfortable, and the rudder -- essential on a boat of this length -- works well (though see below). My wife found that her back was getting sore after a while paddling, but when I suggested she slouch a bit, it helped. The relative closeness of the cockpits does make it advantageous to paddle synchronously, but that's not a problem for us. Because we've done only short excursions, we haven't even used the hatches yet, but they seem spacious and the covers very secure.
The rudder that shipped with the boat was apparently cracked when it was delivered to the dealer, so we had to wait for the replacement to come. And this spring, one of the rudder lines pulled out of its anchor in front of the pedal. Eddyline was quick to promise us a replacement part (though they then forgot and needed a reminder). We like the relative light weight -- two middle-aged people can lift it pretty easily onto the cartop carrier. Its length (19'6") means it JUST fits in our garage.
When I was shopping, I appreciated seeing what people used for accessories, so here's a quick summary:
I set up a Harken hoist system that works great with the boat, which was a real pain to install, but works great. We use a Yakima rack system with Mako saddles. The Yakima tie-downs are nice. And we splurged on carbon paddles from Aqua-Bound (230 cm), and are very happy with those as well, though after the first couple times out I wished I had a 240cm paddle in the back. I'm just 5'8" and have to dig pretty steeply to avoid hitting the side of the boat. I've adapted to it fine now and don't know that I need/want the added length now.
We went out recently with our kids (two teenage girls and a pre-teen boy), two of us in a rented canoe and one in a cheap rental single kayak. Though the Whisper CL had the 3rd and 4th strongest paddlers, it was easily the fastest boat of the three boats.
We're quite happy with our Whisper CL and would buy the same boat again.
100,000+ people can't be wrong!
The Paddling.net Newsletter is a must if you like to canoe or kayak! Each week it is packed with great articles, photos, product reviews, and special features. Better yet, we promise not to sell your email address to anyone; that's right ZERO spam! Sign up today and find out what you've been missing!