03-20-2013Submitted by: stonesgl
Reviews for Night Hawk 16 Kayak by Eddyline
Based On: 17 Reviews
- Rating: 10 of 10 I love this kayak. It is sleek, easy to paddle, fast and has great secondary stability. It is a perfect boat for short women because you can have the seat padded to fit your body. I am one with this boat and will paddle it anywhere. It is also lightweight and has lots of hatch space for long trips.
11-19-2010Submitted by: JeffG
- Rating: 9 of 10 Of seaworthiness, that quality which constitutes a kayak; that component without which tracking is poor and stability is lacking; that design which carves turns, handles waves, makes crossings, and wins races—the superiority must, with some reluctance be accorded to the Nighthawk. It is not to be suggested that of this hydrodynamic efficiency the Pungo had only a little, because the Nighthawk had more; for every other kayak since the Nordkapp must give respect to the Pungo; and even of the Nighthawk it must be said that if it has more secure bulkheads, it has not better comfort.
The Nighthawk's expeditions were always exciting, either prompted by some long coastal exploration, or required by some big kayak race; it cruised without resistance, and raced without competition. What its hull could supply at sea, or provide in a long crossing was all that was needed, and all that was achieved. The stable design of the Pungo enabled it to reassure new paddlers, to provide comfortable seating, and to satisfy all that fishing might require, or camping might demand. If the races of the Nighthawk therefore are faster, the Pungo provides relaxed paddling. If of the Nighthawk’s hull the appearance is that of a sportscar, of the Pungo's the look is more of an SUV. The Nighthawk often leads the other kayaks, and the Pungo never falls far behind them. The Nighthawk is paddled with consistent excitement, and the Pungo with continual satisfaction.
06-30-2010Submitted by: Preston
- Rating: 10 of 10 I have had this boat out for several trips to area lakes. Most of these lakes only allow <20hp. When paddling before I had PWC's run in rings around me trying to swamp my wife and I. In the NH16 this would never be a problem, the boat seems to bob over waves, cutting through and adjusting as it goes over. The tracking is excellent, and I have been paddling for 4hr sessions even racing a sailboat one day. I have become more accustomed to leaning on the turn, and find getting in and out with the straddle mount easier. Soon plan to start learning to roll with it. Great boat!
05-13-2010Submitted by: Preston
- Rating: 10 of 10 I bought the NH 16 a month ago in Western New York. My past experience has been in a Pamlico lite tandem. This is a whole new level of kayaking for me. The NH16 is so much faster on the water, with little effort. I am learning to do lean turns with it and find that it is a little scary when trying to lean-I want to bring it back too quick, but it has a place where it locks, and does not go further. I have found that it is teaching me more about my paddling, rhythm, and core movements than I had used before. I am 60 and hope to use this as part of my new exercise routine in the Summers to keep in shape.
08-24-2007Submitted by: lars5600
- Rating: 9 of 10 I love this boat. Feels more comfortable than any other boat I have paddled. Tracks great. Rolls beautifully. Plenty of room for a trip of 6 days easy. One of the best looking boats out there too. It takes plenty of abuse and does not show it. Great kayak!
07-05-2007Submitted by: rfree
- Rating: 10 of 10 I purchased a new red NH16 a few weeks ago after a few months of research on what was to be my next boat. I have owned an OT Otter and Wilderness systems Pamlico 140, so my experience up to this point has been using rec boats only.
The NH16 has moderate initial stability and excellent secondary stability. Going from a rec boat to this was an adjustment for me, but after about 10 minutes on the water I became used to lower initial stability and now after around 15 hours on the boat I absolutely love how it behaves on the water. I have been learning how to make sharp turns on edge where I'm leaning so much the waterline is way up on my spray skirt and the boat shows no sign of wanting to roll over. I took it out today to a lake that I usually paddle using my Pamlico 140. I covered about three times as much ground using the NH16 in the same 3 hour timeframe due to the NH16s speed and ease of paddling. The boat really scoots across the water and glides well (again relative to what I'm used to). On Lake Michigan I found that using the drop skeg was helpful when dealing with winds and rough waters. The fit and finish on the boat are excellent and despite numerous unsuccessful attempts to roll (followed by successful wet-exits thankfully), no water has entered into either hatch. I have even learned to do paddle float re-entries using the NH16.
I bought this boat because I wanted something that was faster than what I had and that would allow me to expand my abilities. This boat has met those needs and has been a blast to paddle. I love the way it paddles and the way it looks. For me, it is the perfect kayak.
05-09-2007Submitted by: wavespinner
- Rating: 10 of 10 I never thought I'd give a 10 in a review, but this boat demands it. Unlike many sea kayaks, this is not a Greenland or British design, so it has a different feel. It's an all-American, Pacific NW design.
The first time this becomes apparent is when you hoist it to your shoulder and feel the bow tip. The seat is set back from the center of gravity. The bow is plumb, giving you more waterline and speed than the average 16' boat will deliver. The decks are low, minimizing wind resistence and weathercocking. Attention to detail is quite evident. There are recesses for carry handles. They fit under deck lines into these recesses, so they don't flop around.
The outfitting goes beyond comfortable. While the seat back is a bit high for laying back, I'm relectant to replace it because it feels quite good underway. The boat readily leans to the edge for sharp carving. The low deck and generous thigh pads make j-leans, rolls, etc. a breeze.
Storage isn't ample, but that's not the intent of the boat. You don't buy a Ferrari to haul luggage.
Fit and finish are exquisite. Eddyline builds a strong boat. May be the best boat I've ever paddled.
12-29-2006Submitted by: passedpawn
- Rating: 9 of 10 Wow. I absolutely love this kayak. I have logged several hundred miles with it, and it is a dream. I paddle the Gulf of Mexico, the intra-coastals, Tampa Bay, and some local rivers (a few hours in my pool, too!) Have slammed some boulders in minor rapids. The Carbonlite material responds beautifully... scratches aren't noticeable. The material is very forgiving to a beating -- I would like to see someone crack or otherwise damage one of these boats. Deck rigging is perfect.
The bow takes waves with gusto. It will dig into some of the bigger ones, but they wash over without too much spray coming at the cockpit. I've only rolled it once, and that was quite a surprise to me. Flipped it while messing around a little ways out from a crowded beach. I brought it back up instantly.
NOTE: I originally got a Seals-brand skirt. It was way too big. The size listed on the little chart that is attached to the skirt listed the wrong size for this boat. Check with Eddyline first.
PROS: Perfect workmanship; There is not a flaw in it, anywhere. Skeg mechanics are smooth, always, and make a huge difference in following winds. I ordered it in blue, which looks terrific (deck is blue, hull is white). Hatch covers fit tightly; I have seen no water entering them. Soft rounded chines make for easy, predictable edging. Width is perfect for my vertical stroke.
This boat seems very fast. I have been out with other paddlers, and I am always the fastest. My paddling buddy just bought a 19' glass boat... looking forward to matching up agains that. I just got a GPS for XMas, so I haven't been able to gauge absolute speeds yet. Initial stability: Moderate, Secondary: Excellent. Seat bottom is perfectly contoured for my arse. The one I got (in contrast to one I test paddled at my local store) had a thin neoprene (?) pad on it... comfortable.
CONS: Seat back hurt. I replaced it with a NSI backband. Took about an hour (and a little ingenuity) to put in, and no back trouble since. The vertical height of the kayak is small. It is a tight fit. I am OK in it (175 lbs, 5'10"), but I wouldn't recomment it for a bigger paddler.
08-03-2006Submitted by: yanoer
- Rating: 9 of 10 I test paddled a white 2005 Carbonlite 2000 with drop down skeg, non-flush rubber covered hatches and clear plastic bulkheads that let a lot more light into the hatches. It is supposed to weigh about 50 lbs and it felt like that was about right.
I paddled it in two sessions for a total of about 45 minutes to an hour (I also test paddled a Dagger Sojourn solo canoe and a Wenonah Sandpiper solo canoe).
I'm 5'6" and about 150 lbs with size 8.5 shoes and the cockpit on the Nighthawk 16 fit me GREAT! I didn't make any adjustments. The keyhole shape allows for easy entry and exit. The boat can also be shoulder carried on both shoulders by sticking your head through the narrow part of the keyhole (facing the stern) and resting the sides of the keyhole on your shoulders. The thigh braces and footpegs were especially pleasing. The thigh braces make a lot of contact and seemed to be placed perfect for me. The foot pegs are nice and big and positioned well for me and didn't feel any pressure points and they felt solid. The seat and back band felt great too. I was amazed how well this boat fit me and how comfortable it felt. I wasn't in it very long today, but it felt like I would be comfortable in it for several hours.
Test Paddle on a small lake with flat water and light breeze: Speed: I was pleased with it's accelleration and cruising speed even though I didn't have any other kayaks there to compare it to. I was using a 220cm Bending Branches Spirt carbon paddle with Day blade and it seemed to be a nice match for the Nighthawk 16. My expectation is that it would be fast enough to allow me to keep up well enough with my paddling partners who paddle 16 and 17' kayaks. Surprisingly, when I got out of the Nighthawk and into my Lotus BJX 16'6" solo canoe, I was able to move it along almost as fast as the Nighthawk, but the Nighthawk is much more maneuverable and secure feeling. Handling: The initial stability may seem a little twitchy to some paddlers, but it felt fine to me (about the same as my Phoenix Isere) and the secondary stability seemed very solid and I was able to carve turns quite nicely with it on edge. I found it to have a very nice combination of tracking and stability. In the conditions that I was paddling, the boat didn't need the skeg and I liked paddling it better without it deployed. The skeg deployed smoothly and the slider was easy to reach and operate.
I really like the fit and handling of this boat.
Outfitting: I didn't have much time to pay attention to the fit and finish and outfitting other than the cockpit and footbraces. The hatch covers on this model aren't flush, so you'll probably get spray in the face when waves come over the bow. The footpegs adjust very easily while in the boat and feel very solid and comfortable. The backband felt great. The hard molded seat seemed contoured nicely seemed like it would be just fine as is or with a thin foam pad. The clear plastic bulkheads are a nice touch and let a lot more light into the storage area. I didn't think there was a kayak out there that would fit me this well right off the shelf.
The Nighthawk fits me much better than my Phoenix Isere and Old Town Castine and my friend's Prijon Kodiak and Barracuda and I think I prefer it's handling to those boats as well.
I am really tempted to buy one of these now, but I'm going to test paddle some other models first for comparison. Also, I'd have to sell three or four other boats to afford it.
08-31-2005Submitted by: EEL
- Rating: 9 of 10 I have only been paddling seriously for this season so I cannot give an expert's opinion, but I and the NH have had many hours on the Maine coast together in a variety of trips/conditions. I am 5' 10' and 180#. The NH fits me very well. When it comes to high performance vehicles, the critical attributes are always the same if it is to be used at its limits. It must be predictable, forgiving, and have no evil traits that bite you suddenly when it is pushed hard. I have found the NH has these and as a result it is a real pleasure to paddle. It just takes many things in stride without any drama at all.
I have through bad luck and bad judgment put myself is some dicey situations, but the NH has always done the right thing with ease and grace saving me from myself. If you want a well made kayak, if you want a kayak that handles a great variety of conditions well, if you want a kayak that just gets better the more you push it, then you should try a NH and try it in lumpy water. That is where differences show up. If you want a high sweeping bow and stern, if you want something built like a tank to take abuse during an expedition to a remote area, if you want a heavy boat, then look elsewhere. Is it perfect? Of course not. I needed to replace the backrest which was trivial to do. I think the bow slaps on small boat chop too much.
I don't know the facts, but based upon my interactions with Eddyline, I find it very unlikely they would sell boats they knew had bad skegs. Speaking of which, with no skeg it will weathercock a little, with a slight skeg it tracks straight, on a full skeg it will leecock. Just the way it should work to trim the boat. Typical of how the boat works overall. It just works right in so many ways it would take a long review to detail them. I keep asking more of it as my skills improve and it just keeps getting better.
07-28-2005Submitted by: Barbe
- Rating: 8 of 10 Has anyone out there purchased one of the Nighthawk 16's that have defective (read non-working) skegs? Unwittingly, I bought one. The dealer told me the kayak was used, (practically new) but that the previous owner had decided he wanted something else. I have no recollection the dealer telling me the skeg was defective. Apparently Eddyline sold these particular kayaks to dealers at a reduced price, with understanding (?) dealers would in turn tell their customers. Now I am left without a working skeg, and Eddyline has told me it would be very difficult to get the skeg working right, without returning it to the factory. They do not intend to do that. I'd appreciate hearing from any other Nighthawk owners who had, or have this problem. Sure, I can use the kayak, but I'd really like a working skeg too.
09-24-2001Submitted by: Jon
- Rating: 9 of 10 2001 Eddyline Knighthawk Carbonlite. The eddyline Knighthawk is a fun and nimble kayak. Bought in June, I have paddled this kayak on both Michigan's Inland Lakes and the Great Lakes in flat conditions to 4 foot waves and over 20 knot winds. This kayak is a blast to surf and ride the waves. I am 5'9" and 170 lbs and the kayak fits like a glove. The finish is very good and the hatches have remained dry even in the roughest conditions. Tracking is good with the skeg down in winds but without the skeg there is some weather-cocking. The boat also has a tendency to slap the water rather than slicing through the waves. The result is a drag on forward motion but the trade off is the quick response to the Kighthawk in waves and a smaller turning radius. Alll in all a fun, fast and responsive kayak. Before I bought I called Eddyline and talked to one of the desingers and they steered me to the Knighthawk andI have been happy with the boat.
08-20-2001Submitted by: ---
- Rating: 10 of 10 2001 Nighthawk in Carbonlite. 16' x 22" @48lbs. I've owned a fiberglass Falcon 18 for some time now and wanted a training boat that offered excellent performance and was a little more durable than fiberglass. I also wanted a second "buddy" boat that most anyone could paddle. The Nighthawk 16 is the perfect boat. The appearance is beautiful and rugged. The carbonlite is an ideal material, it looks like fiberglass, but is as durable as poly but lighter and stiffer. The boat tracks very well skeg up and excellent with it down. Maneuverability is exceptional. Rolling is easy. At 22" wide, initial stability is very good, most anyone can paddle this craft, although a beginner will consider it tippy. Secondary stability is also very good. It leans quite easily and again, turning ability it great. Personally I prefer hulls of a rudderless design, but I am learning to enjoy the benefits of the retractable skeg. The boat handled rough open seas in an exceptional manner and sill had a pretty good glide for it's size. Cargo capabilities are suitable for trips of several days if needed. I am mostly involved with sprint style races, but for every day use, the Nighthawk carbonlite in my opinion is the best choice for a 16' kayak for the novice to the advanced intermediate paddler. If they made the Falcon 18 in carbonlite, that would be a perfect everyday boat for the advanced int. to the expert.
05-22-2001Submitted by: WaveWolf
- Rating: 10 of 10 I traded in my Merlin LT, which I loved, for the longer Night Hawk since I prefer open water paddling. I found the Night Hawk to have less initial stability than the wider Merlin LT, but both have outstanding secondary stability. Very predictable in all circumstances, with wind at right angles to waves being the greatest challenge to me. I benefitted from adding weight in the bow to reduce windage. The Night Hawk tracks well with or without skeg, and edges easily with skeg up to manuever in any water, including big surf. Lightweight and easy to cartop. Large rear hatch cover makes loading long gear easy, but the narrow profile means planning like a backpacker to fit everything inside! Hatch covers are secure and watertight, even in rough conditions. Ride is fairly dry. The Night Hawk is a delight to paddle for the experienced paddler, and shouldn't be avoided by the less experienced--get the boat you'll grow into and love. At 5'7" and 170lbs, I wear my kayak like a mermaid's fins. Like all Eddyline kayaks, the finishing is superb.
02-12-2001Submitted by: RWS
- Rating: 8 of 10 I bought one of the first modulus boats available, after paddling the carbonlite model. The light weight (about 42 pounds) is great. The kevlar interior is smooth and beautiful, and I love the way the boat tracks in wind and waves. However, I got fairly severe leakage amidships from the seams, and both the forward and aft hatches were noticeably off-center, a cosmetic problem only, but I'm particular. The company did reseal the seams at no cost, and I've seen no leaking since. All-in-all, I like the boat a lot, but it's not a 10.
04-02-2000Submitted by: ---
- Rating: 9 of 10 Having tested scores of boats in the past year, this one gets top marks. Light weight -- claimed 48 lbs. The boat felt like an extension of my body. Very responsive. Medium initial stability. Rock solid secondary stability. Easy to put the boat up on edge. Very responsive to leaning. Pretty fast, too. Took some waves over the hatches without a drop of water getting in. Tracked straight with or without the skeg. Only negative is the smallish storage. Still, liked it so much I bought TWO.
03-20-2000Submitted by: Hugh Roth
- Rating: 9 of 10 Took this boat out and ran into high (25 knts +) wind about 1.5 miles out. The boat did not want to turn into the wind (no surprise), but once there, it tracked like a champ. I raised the skeg to see what would happen. The tracking all the way home was wonderful--all that was required was a little kneeing.
Very comfortable, adjustable seat. I was able to keep my hands down and use a lot of body rotation fighting the wind back home. Did not ding my thumbs on the coaming. Pearling into the waves splashed my face some. Boat felt stable.
Rear hatch was dry; did not check front hatch. Seas really were not big enough to test their waterproofness (?). Deck line hardware fittings were smooth on the inside of the hatches. Able to carry it comfortably on my shoulder. Concerns: at 10 cubic feet, not very much cargo space.
Don't Miss the Paddling.net Weekly Newsletter!
90,000+ 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!