03-27-2013Submitted by: gmuller
Reviews for NC 15 Escape Kayak by NC Kayaks
Based On: 8 Reviews
- Rating: 10 of 10 This is a follow-up on my previous review. The real test of this kayak came during a 76-mile trip on the Ochlokonee River in northwest Florida. The river was choked with sweepers and strainers resulting from a previous flood state. The NC Escape performed well around those obstacles and handled the fast current with ease. Against an in-coming tide and a strong off-shore wind the kayak's tracking ability came to a crucial test and came out with flying colors.
I originally worried about how much abuse this kayak could take due to a previous review from another paddler. During this trip, it got launched from concrete ramps, landed on gravel bars, got stuck in sand and mud, got thrown over a drainage ditch and rode in the back of a rental truck along with other kayaks and survived a 200+ mile journey at high speed on top of my Honda. Yes, it is scratched up but it actually looks better for it. It deserves a 10.
12-24-2012Submitted by: gmuller
- Rating: 9 of 10 A few months ago I purchased the NC 15 Escape LT from Novus Composites and I have some positive as well as concerns to share. I am 71 years old and definitely not new to the sport. I have owned many different kayaks over the years.
I purchased the NC 15 Escape in the LT version because of its weight. Age and a back that needs cuddling being the main factors. The NC 15 Escape at 41 lbs is definitely a light boat. It is also a beautiful, well constructed boat and the folks at Novus Composites made the purchase easy. It was shipped to me in Florida in a huge box and arrived safely. Upon reviewing the website I had opted for one of the in-stock models which made it quite affordable although the shipping charge was much higher than anticipated.
I have taken this kayak up a very narrow twisting river with a very strong current and found it easy to maneuver it through the twists and turns. I have taken it out in the Gulf for a 20 mile trip on a day with moderate chop and the kayak tracked straight. For anyone interested in multi day trips rest assured that her cavernous bulkheads will carry a lot of camping gear. The boat is responsive to leans, tracks well without a skeg or rudder, and is very stable.
However, there are some things that I wish the company would have done a bit differently. This particular model comes with a D-Ring aft but it does not come with a similar D-Ring in the front although it is available as an option when you order the boat built. On my kayak, the screw securing the D-Ring to the deck is very long and protrudes way down into the kayak. This could possibly lead to the tearing of a dry bag or flotation bag. Also, the hatch covers (which I like a lot) are not secured to the kayak in any way. They are rather heavy but could still be separated from the boat by a strong wind while taking gear in or out of the kayak or also by some critter while camping (like racoons in the Everglades for example). Also, the footpegs cannot be moved while sitting in the kayak, a feature now available in many other kayaks.
That said, over all, I am very pleased with the NC 15 Escape. It is a good sea worthy and very attractive kayak.
01-30-2012Submitted by: HappyPaddler
- Rating: 6 of 10 NC's boats are very nicely finished are really beautiful to look at. That being said, they are really meant for placid water paddlers who enjoy getting out on the water but don't really care to advance their paddling skills (which means beating your boat during the process). Here's a few reasons why I say this:
While the fit and finish of my NC15 was super, the light layup simply could not stand up to any abuse, whatsoever. Practicing rolls, T-rescues, cowboys, etc., quickly resulted in spiderweb cracks around the cockpit area.
The hatches that NC uses also miss the mark. The front hatch is so small as to be almost useless. The rear hatch is large enough to be useful, but the small, non-slip nubs that are molded into the hard plastic hatches shred your knuckles when turning the handles to open or lock shut the covers. Besides this, they are not dry.
The perimeter deck lines are pretty much for looks only. They don't extend far enough toward the bow or stern and they are so tight that only a stick person would be able to get a gloved hand under them.
Lastly, the "performance flange" (where deck meets the hull) makes a nice rub rail, but it catches on your pfd if you are doing cowboys and T-rescues. A flush seam would be much nicer.
Okay, this review is quite critical, but there are positives to this boat, too. If you simply want to get out on the water and don't plan on hammering your boat, this is a great choice. The choice of colors is super and NC boats are really nice to look at. The light layup makes the NC15 easy to carry and load without help. The craftsmanship is excellent, and, oh, the hull really scoots through the water, smoking without effort the Romanies, Explorers, etc. that might be paddling with you. The boat has no rudder or skeg, but one was never needed, despite wind, following seas, etc. If that were not enough, NC often has killer sales where you can pick up a spiffy looking boat for not much money...just be sure of what you hope to get out of and put into paddling and you won't go wrong. My wife and I now paddle NDK boats. Not as fast or pretty as NC's, but tough as hell and, for us, that is more important.
10-13-2011Submitted by: Gaffanon
- Rating: 9 of 10 Ok I ordered my Escape; it came a week later. The finish is very very good; a great looking boat. I am not graceful on entry or exit of a kayak never have been in 43 years of paddling, but I found it easy to enter and exit. It is graceful in the water tracks pretty straight and I over paddle to my right. I will turn well while edging. It is quick, i usually find myself waiting for my companions to catch up a lot it takes little effort to get her up and gliding and she glides on and on.
My only complaint, if it can be called one, is the forward bulk head is a bit close i can touch it with my feet if I stretch out and I wonder how long it will be before I have to change the rubrail but other than that I am thrilled. It was cheaper than many plastic boats these days, they were great at NC to deal with and I called and emailed a lot before ordering as I had never even seen one in person let alone paddle one, I am glad I got it and next year I'm getting either a 17 or 19.
02-02-2010Submitted by: amaiorano
- Rating: 9 of 10 A quality, top-notch product in every respect. Spur of the moment, I ordered a NC 15 Escape from NC Kayaks right before Christmas. The sale was too good to pass up. The kayak was delivered with no damage or scars after a trip across the country. It truly lives up to the claims made on the website. Paddles straight, little or no weathercocking, achieves "touring" speed quickly and easily. Construction is superb. Seat is amazingly comfortable. Only critique is the aft access hatch opening is a bit small but no problem for packing. I've already tested getting my camping gear in and was successful with no issues.
In every respect I'm a satisfied customer: from ordering, to calls for more info, to final receipt of the kayak, the purchase process was a pleasure. This is my third kayak and first composite boat. Aside from being a darned attractive boat, it's stable and fun to paddle. I'd recommend this kayak to all who are seeking to move out of their plastic boat and up to a faster and lighter boat.
01-25-2010Submitted by: William Mcgrath
I'm looking forward to testing it's roll-ability (and mine!) as soon as the weather and water warm up.
- Rating: 9 of 10 I received my NC Escape in early January. It arrived at the freight terminal in the largest card board box I have ever seen! The folks at the YRC terminal were very gracious and also helpful in disposing of the carton. The kayak arrived in perfect condition. When I removed the top of the carton I was spellbound by the graceful lines and meticulous fit and finish of this boat. I brought it home, applied a quick coat of wax to the hull and left for the lake.
I have been paddling for years, but always in a plastic kayak. The difference was immediately obvious. The Escape slips through the water with ease and tracks wonderfully. It does require a little more effort to turn but I expected that. The Escape responds well to bracing turns and after a few hours on the water I feel one with this boat.
To be honest, I was a little apprehensive about the fiber glass seat, but Greg at NC assured me I would find it comfortable. So far I have to agree with him. I am 5'11" and 175 pounds and the seat shape and position is perfect for me. The underside of the cockpit combing is nicely shaped to provide a comfortable knee brace.
I guess if I had to pick something I would like different on my kayak it would be a larger front hatch. It is only six inches in diameter and will limit what I can fit into the front compartment.
Overall I am extremely pleased with my new Yellow Escape and look forward to years of exploring the lakes and rivers of the Southeast. I would like to add that Doug and Greg of NC Kayaks were very helpful and patiently answered all of my questions. Give them a call before you buy your next kayak. You will be glad you did.
11-27-2005Submitted by: DaveH
- Rating: 10 of 10 I just had my new Escape LT out for the first time on Sequim Bay, WA. I'm very pleased with all aspects of this boat. I'm 5'9", 205lbs and although a beginner, I find that I can confidently handle this boat. While it may not have the initial stability of other designs, it has excellent secondary stability, tracks well and is very fast for its length. The light weight is a real plus for car-topping. Highly recommended.
05-19-2004Submitted by: Andy Olsen
- Rating: 10 of 10 I've just purchased my second NC Kayak. The first was the NC-15 Excursion - the second is the new NC-15 Escape (same kayak - w/forward hatch). I'm 6'2", 185# and paddle primarily in South Puget Sound (Olympia, WA). I've found everything about NC Kayaks is truly exceptional (tracking, hull design, deck finishes, storage, seat comfort, etc.) Amazingly, the hull glides through the ebs and flows of the South Sound and slips through a good breeze without the necessity of a rudder or skeg. I've even added a Scotty mount forward of the cockpit for a rod holder and sail. Even when I'm trolling for salmon, or sailing in farily stout winds, I've found NC Kayaks stable and true to their course. Before buying my first Kayak I did a ton of research - I feel NC Kayaks are a terrific value. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
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