Pedal kayaking is fun! It can be exciting or adventurous, and it can even be relaxing depending on what the buyer is looking for.
Similarly, there are different types of kayaks for different types of users. When considering buying a pedal drive kayak, there are many factors to consider. Whether to buy an expensive or inexpensive model, a new
Things to Look for in a
The size of a kayak can vary considerably based on the intentions of the manufacturer. Pedal kayaks can be as small as eight or nine feet and weigh as little as 25 pounds, or they can be as long as 13 or 14 feet and weigh in at upwards of 100 pounds, making the larger ones more challenging to store and haul.
Many kayaks, particularly smaller and more lightweight models, are one-seaters. They are meant to be operated by one person using pedals and an oar, and it is essentially impossible for another person to ride in them. Amongst the longer ones, many tandem models can be enjoyed and operated by two people at once. However, tandem pedal kayaks are a very popular trend right now.
Some pedal kayaks come with accessories such as fishing rod holders, fish finding transducers, and tackle storage that make them attractive options for fishermen. These extras are unnecessary for the non-fisher and casual enthusiast. Fishing in a
Depending on size and design, storage capacity can seriously vary on a
Some seats have more padding, back support, and ergonomic design than others. It may not be necessary to have the best seating to spend an hour or two on the water. Those who want to take longer trips will require more comfortable and supportive seating, which is often found on larger and more expensive models.
For many, particularly fishermen and those going on long journeys, stability is a serious factor to consider. A good
Those interested in purchasing pedal kayaks need to consider primary stability (relating to back-and-forth motion) and secondary stability (relating to how easily a boat flips or capsizes) when making a kayak purchase. The last thing anyone wants is to finish up in the water.
This may be one of the least important aspects of buying a kayak for some, but there are those who like to consider the visual aspects of the item. Many kayaks come standard in camo finishes, black, or basic primary colors such as red, blue, and yellow. Custom finishes are available, although often these are found on more pricey models.
Pedal Drive Types
There are two main types of drives for pedal-driven kayaks: push-pedal and rotational pedal. Each has its advantages and drawbacks. We break down the two different types of drives in our ultimate guide to pedal kayaks.
- Push Pedals — the action is similar to that of a hand water pump, only operated with the feet. It is a quick way to get forward momentum. However, the repetitiveness, rigidity, and stress of the motion can result in health problems, including cramps in the legs and feet, damage to muscles, and even some types of back pain.
- Rotational Pedals — this style is more common to propeller pedal kayaks. As the name suggests, the pedals rotate with an action similar to a bicycle’s pedal mechanism. Rotational pedals seem to be a better option generally as they put less stress on the legs since the emphasis is not on pushing and strength, and it takes less effort to continually supply the propulsion system with nonstop energy.
- Hobie Kayaks: a well-known brand that just does everything right. If you are looking to buy a new
pedal kayak, then you can’t do better than Hobie. Check out our detailed guide to Hobie pedal kayaks.
- Brooklyn Kayak – Brooklyn Kayak Company is another maker of larger, high-end kayaks for the serious enthusiast. Their 13- and 14-foot models are well known in the kayaking world for their stability of design, cargo space, and comfortable seating. Some BKC models also accommodate the fisherman, such as with multiple flush-mounted rod holders.
- Native – Native is a maker of mid-sized kayaks, in between the beginner models and the professional outfits. Native’s kayaks are known for being durable, especially stable, reasonably spacious, and somewhat useful for fishermen. They are made for those who perhaps aren’t looking to go into a high-level kayak purchase but want something that is long-lasting and very stable and allows the operator to enjoy just an hour or two or a full day on the water.
- Old Town, Ocean, and Wilderness – Systems are all trustworthy makers of small, lightweight, basic kayaks for beginners. There are many models available and those wanting something compact, simple, and inexpensive for occasional or casual use would do well to investigate the products of these companies.
As with so many large, serious purchases, shipping is free with many online stores. This may make for the best buying option, particularly if it is difficult for the buyer to take home large objects due to transportation, disability, or other issues. Many online stores also have competitive pricing on these options, making it easy to find a good price.
Buying a kayak is not a matter to be taken lightly whether the buyer is looking for something small and easily stored in the garage or a major-sized boat for adventuring and fishing. There are many options available, and it always pays off to take some time and carefully go over the options available.
Pedal Kayak for Long Distance: BKC PK13 13’ Pedal Drive Fishing Kayak
Pedal kayaks have a multitude of uses and are a favorite among many hobbyists. They’re much easier to use, speedy, less fatiguing, and quieter than their pedal-powered counterparts.
It’s great to have an idea of some of the best options out there before deciding on a purchase. We think the BKC PK13 13’ Pedal Drive
The Brooklyn Kayak Company brand is one often associated with exceptional boating quality — they have a long history of manufacturing water-based products, geared especially to pedal-powered kayaks. They claim their PK13 13’ kayak has a number of features:
- Pedal Drive System — utilizes a rotational pedal drive system that drives a propeller beneath the kayak. No paddles are needed, and you can even have an optional trolling motor for more fishing capabilities. The propulsion system can also be removed to allow for easier transport.
- Designed for Maximum Distance and Stability — the 13-foot-long sleek, lightweight design, coupled with the efficient propulsion system, provides the ability to pedal for miles without exhaustion. It is quick and comfortable to use.
- Ergonomic Seat — lightweight, padded, and adjustable. This seat provides maximum comfort; perfect when out for long hours on the water.
- Rod Holders — flush mount rod holders make for hands-free fishing whilst paddling or trolling. The pedals come in handy for control too when holding your rods.
- Storage Areas — built-in storage hatches provide watertight storage, whilst the two front and rear surface cargo areas have bungee straps to hold down any additional items (bags and fishing boxes).
What We Like
All the features of the kayak worked perfectly. There are a number of features that stand out on the PK13 kayak.
- Exceptional Propulsion — the pedal system makes moving the kayak effortless, like riding a bike but much quieter and arguably more relaxing. It’s easy to pick up speed and maintain control without sacrificing too much energy. Compared with push paddle kayaks, it’s easy to see how easy it is to go further in the PK13.
- Great for Fishing — the ultra-quiet operation makes the PK13 great for sneaking up on fish. With rod holders and plenty of cargo space for equipment and tools (or a cooler for beers), it’s the ideal kayak for many different types of fishing.
- Comfortable Experience — the pedals have adjustable straps for your feet and the chair is adjustable in position as well as padded, making everything extremely comfortable and effortless.
What We Don’t Like
The only thing we could find a complaint with is that there isn’t easy access to the inner hull. If you want to be making additions to the kayak yourself it’ll be hard for this reason, as drilling holes to make attachments is useless if you can’t get inside to screw.
Overall, the BKC PK13 Angler 13′ Solo Sit-On-Top
Pedal Kayak for Fishing: Bonafide SS127 Fishing Kayak
The Bonafide SS127
Bonafide describes the SS127 as having been designed for “Ultimate Fishability.” This kayak has a comfortable design as well with ergonomic contours specially designed to make it glide through the water with as little effort as possible.
One can expect quality from this
Check out the Bonafide SS127 Fishing Kayak Review
The high-quality materials of this
The Bonafide SS127
The Bonafide SS127
It has a sliding under-seat Junk Drawer and a DryPod with transducer through-hull scupper.
There is also a bow hatch with Doubleheader hinges and multi-rod and paddle management points.
There is always a great amount of storage and value that one can expect from a Bonafide and the SS127 is no exception. It has a capacity of 475 pounds inside its Hybrid Cat Hull design.
There are few things that cut through the water better than a Bonafide SS127
Although it is powered by paddles, it will not sap a whole lot of energy to propel this 75-pound
Few other fishing kayaks on the market offer so many features. The Bonafide SS127
Pedal Kayak: Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 Pedal Fishing Kayak
The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10, generally designed for fishing on lakes, is one of the most convenient pedal kayaks on the market.
Native Watercraft is one of the top brands in its sector, and its professionalism and experience are evident in this product. The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 is a high performance, multi-purpose kayak with excellent stability.
It comes in four beautiful designs:
- Blue lagoon
- Hidden Oak
- Lizard Lick
The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 is the lightest 10’ pedal
A kayak that is light like this is also very fast; this kayak can cover 4.2 miles per hour with relaxed pedaling and go up to 5.2 miles per hour with faster pedaling! The pedal system works both forward and backward; there are no more awkward turns of the boat in the water in order to change direction.
This kayak is also very comfortable to sit in and feels rock-solid stable. It’s designed both for small and tall people; nobody will feel out of place or uncomfortable on this kayak. The seat is horizontally adjustable in order to fit everybody.
It’s possible to bungee cord the paddle to the side of the kayak in order to have it handy and to not lose it. The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 has also an open bow trunk for storage and comes with scuppers for drainage that are very useful in case of waves.
What We Like
The lightness of the Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10
The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 is a top
Pedal Kayak for Shallow Water: Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5 Foot Pedal Fishing Kayak
If you are looking for a kayak that can handle shallow water, then you should look at Hobie. It is a kayak by which all others can be judged. The Hobie Passport is easy to use and great fun.
It is designed for relaxation with the features to make kayaking by pedal enjoyable and easy. With just moderate pedaling effort and a little concentration on the steering, it can go through any waterway. It has an easy-to-use steering system, and it navigates easily with fingertip control over a twist-and-stow rudder. The rudder adjusts easily with the fingertip control and even novices can get a handle on how to steer this kayak fairly quickly.
The best thing about it is that it moves easily through shallows and weeds, which allows the kayaker to reach the most remote parts of every waterway. It is “easy on the legs,” requiring only moderate effort to pedal through the most challenging aquatic environments. When faced with a shallow grassy section of a waterway, the kayak can seamlessly drift over the shallow waters without getting stuck, and it only requires a modicum of increased effort to pedal through these types of straits.
The Hobie has Mirage Drive and a suspended mesh aluminum frame seat. It also has two accessory mounting racks, which can be used for fishing poles or even as tripod mounts for camera work. It is well equipped for nearly every usage one could think of.
The Mirage Passport is also promoted as a fishing
The portability and durability of this kayak make it the easy choice, and it can also be affordably placed onto a 12-month payment plan to make it easy to pay for. One certainly will have few to no regrets after paying off this beautiful kayak, which is durable to last and if it does not, it comes with a warranty from Hobie.
The kayak at first seems a bit costly since it is well over a grand, but for all it offers, it is actually quite a bargain. It promotes such an easy and relaxing time, and it is the perfect kayak for navigating many freshwater ecosystems.
The Mirage Drive Classic is aimed at providing an easy-pedaling experience with all the tools to stay on path with a great steering system. It enables the users of it to pedal to places other small crafts cannot reach, which can be a tremendous advantage in some fishing situations.
Fish like to go places boats cannot, but the Hobie takes fish up on that challenge and provides a way to find the fishes’ nests and reel in the real monsters that hide in the shallows. What more could a kayaker ask for?
Pedal Kayak for Offshore Fishing: Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14 Kayak
Kayaking has gained many fans in the past decade. This success can be attributed to pedal kayaks. They offer speed, stability, ample storage, maneuverability. Most importantly, pedal kayaks can be customized. They can be designed with specific features for certain activities, such as offshore fishing.
Offshore fishing isn’t an easy task; neither is selecting an ideal kayak for this activity. We’ve heard of people going more than a mile offshore for pedal kayaking from the shore, encountering waves, and having to bring large fish back to the beach.
While we don’t recommend this, when considering a kayak for offshore fishing, you need to consider factors such as the available storage, dimensions, mounting areas, among others.
- Ease of use– In offshore fishing, you’ll have to go for a long-distance before getting to the fishing spot. You’ll need a kayak that gains speed faster, and covers more ground at a time, and with less energy. Therefore, kayaks that are shorter than 13 feet may not be the best for offshore fishing. A kayak that moves faster is also ideal when you experience waves and would you love to go back to the shore as soon as you can.
- Surfing ability – As you go away from the shore, the waves tend to become stronger. It would help if you had a kayak that can punch through the waves. A narrow bow will allow you to go through the waves. Waves tend to push back the wide bowed kayaks. Your
pedal kayakshould also be able to surf in the waves.
- Mounting tracks – Offshore fishing requires gear such as rods, fish finders, tackle boxes. The
pedal kayakyou choose for offshore fishing should have mounting rails for this gear. Some people need to film themselves; others bring an extra set of GPS and electronics like i-Pads. The pedal kayakyou choose should allow you to mount all of these items conveniently. When rigging a kayak, everything should be accessible, but still give you space to use your tools, get to your storage, and deal with the landing fish.
- Storage – You need to ensure that the
fishing kayakhas enough room. This storage involves sections to mount your rod holders, sections to store your fish, and any other items you need. The storage can be inside the kayak, or on the kayak, enhanced with bungee cords and tie-down holders to hold these items in place. You may need a section to store your live bait, as well as areas to place your tackle boxes.
- Rudder – Before checking the rudder, you should ensure that the kayak tracks well. There needs to be a balance; too much tracking ability makes the kayak less maneuverable. A rudder allows you to control the kayak when it’s windy. It needs to be placed where you can easily access it to ensure an almost hands-free fishing.
- Speed vs. Stability – You need to balance speed and stability. Kayaks that are too fast are less stable. Kayaks that are also stable are quite slow. Ensure that you have enough speed, as well as stability to move around the kayak, and even deal with big fish.
For a serious angler practicing offshore fishing, this is the ultimate
pedal kayakis 14 feet long.
- Fully rigged weight – 65kg (144.5lbs).
- Adjustable Vantage ST seat.
- Rudder system – Skeg.
- Sit-on hull design.
- Width of 38 inches.
- This kayak is made out of rotomolded polyethylene.
- MirageDrive 180 with kickback turbo fins.
- Mounting tracks.
- Carrying handles – These are padded to make them more comfortable as you move the kayak.
- This kayak has six horizontal rod holders – Some people do say that vertical rod storage inconveniences paddling. Horizontal storage eliminates this problem and creates room for storing more rods.
What we liked
- Pedal Ability and Stealth – This
pedal kayakis fitted with the Hobie’s MirageDrive 180 that has Glide technology. Coupled up with the turbo fins, this pedal kayakis fast and requires less energy. You can get deeper into the ocean and still have enough energy to fish. The kayak is 14 feet long; this allows you to cover more ground every time you pedal.
- Mounting tracks – This kayak has the H-Rail mounting rails for the mounting of accessories and mounting rod holders. The H-Rail system also has areas to place your beverages.
- Stern – The stern hatches have been designed to allow you to access all your gear from your sitting position.
- Rudder – This
pedal kayakhas a tracking skeg to allow you to control it through rough waters. This skeg comes with primary and secondary steering handles, placed conveniently.
- Storage – This kayak has ample space to store all the gear related to offshore fishing. There’s an 8 inch rear cargo area, in-built rod holders, and twist-n-seal hatches. The 14 feet length and 38-inch width make the kayak quite spacious to carry much gear horizontally.
- Stability – This
pedal kayakis highly stable, allowing you to stand as you cast. The floor mats are also padded to make it easier for you to move around the deck without sliding.
In 2019, Hobie launched the 2020 Pro Angler 14 that now has the MirageDrive 360 pedal system, and kick-up fins. These make this new model very powerful, maneuverable, and easy to control. Offshore fishing has never been better with this kayak. It also comes with a retractable transducer shield. Tackle boxes are quite crucial for offshore fishing. The Mirage Pro Angler 14 has two medium-sized tackle boxes and a storage area below them. It also has an inbuilt transducer mount where you can mount your fish-finders and make your fishing more successful.
What we didn’t like
There comes a time where you may need to paddle the kayak. This may be through the waves as you leave the shore. It’s a bit difficult to paddle this kayak since it’s quite wide. We also think that this
The MirageDrive 180 and 360 offer high speed and quiet propulsion. It is easy to pedal for a long distance without getting tired. The kayak is quite long, covering more ground as you go offshore. The 14 feet length and 38-inch width are quite spacious, offering greater space for storage. The H-Rail mounting tracks are useful for mounting any electronic or rod holder. The length also allows you to store up to 6 rods horizontally. This kayak may be considered heavy, but this weight accounts for the high stability it has. You can easily stand as you cast, and the floor has anti-slides to make sure you don’t fall. The skeg and double steering feature make this kayak easy to maneuver even in strong wind. Overall, we believe that this is one of the best offshore fishing kayaks. It meets all the criteria and exceeds our expectations in performance and durability.
Pedal Kayak with propeller: Native Watercraft
After being an angler for some time, you may grow out of the basic pedal kayaks. You may think of getting one of those kayaks with advanced features and a slightly higher price. If you’re at this level, you most probably know a lot about kayaks by now. Nevertheless, we feel obliged to update you on the best kayaks across all levels. Some of the advanced features you might find in a kayak include;
- Double steering system- they may have steering rods on both sides of the kayak. This allows you to switch hands as you control the kayak
- Through hull transducer mounts to mount your fishfinder. Also, they may have a retractable transducer shield to protect the transducer from impact.
- Speed – Some kayaks are really fast.
- Advanced Tank well
However, not all premium kayaks are worth the money, so you need to be careful. Below is one of the best premium pedal kayaks that we’ve come across; Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10.
Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10
Native Watercraft was the second company to break into pedal kayaks. After Hobie’s mirage success, Native Watercraft craft introduced its propeller drive system which was faster and easier to use. They aimed at making high-performance kayaks that you would still enjoy as you use them. The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 is one of the products of this innovation.
The Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 10 is powered by a rotational pedal drive system. This allows you to sail hands-free as you fish, film, take photographs, and even read. Native Watercraft kayaks are known for being light making them easy to transport. You can just tie it on your car, or at the back of your truck. Their lightweight, as well as, their glide shape makes these kayaks some of the fastest in the market. From the looks of it, this is a kayak that has been designed for fishing.
- Unlike Hobie’s push pedal system; this kayak has the rotational pedal system. You pedal like in a bicycle, and the propeller under the kayak rotates. This pedal system has its perks. It is fast, less stiff, and easy to move in reverse. When you stop pedaling, it will keep the kayak in motion for some distance before stopping. In the mirage drive, when you stop pedaling, the kayak stops instantly. This pedal system also exhibits higher maneuverability compared to other pedal drive systems. To move in reverse, you just pedal in the opposite direction. This makes it ideal for beginners and experienced anglers alike.
- This kayak comes in a tunnel, pontoon shaped hull design. This offers great stability and maneuverability regardless of the water conditions. When compared to other kayaks of its price range (more than $2000 on Amazon), this kayak is quite short (10 feet). However, the great stability can be attributed to its wide width. You can even stand as you cast, giving you a better chance of catching bigger fish. Don’t worry about standing; the deck is padded to prevent you from sliding.
- The deck is made comfortable by reducing the clutter and having the adjustable armchair.
- The kayak has several groove tracks to mount your accessories, as well as a transducer mount for fish finders.
- To improve its surfing ability, tracking and speed, this kayak features a sharp bow.
- This kayak also has enough storage. A 5-inch storage hatch, accessory tray, cup holders, and 2 flush mount rod holders. The bow also has a hatch with bungee cords. You can store some of your cargo here.
- A drain plug to drain water from the kayak.
- The kayak comes with fishing gear such as a paddle, anchor trolley, sidewinder, and paddle leash, among others.
What we didn’t like
- The kayak is light but the extra fishing gear makes it heavier. If you’re not getting the kayak for fishing, you don’t have to worry about t since you can forego the fishing gear.
- The propeller drive system is an advanced feature but it’s not ideal for shallow water bodies. Logs and kelps may destroy the propeller. The weeds may also get stuck within the propeller. Not forgetting that the propeller may not be environmentally friendly since it destroys the lilies. To avoid such scenarios, it would be better to get the mirage drive kayaks by Hobie, especially those with kickback fins.
- Rigging the kayak for fishing is quite complicated and takes time. If you’re always in a hurry, this may be disappointing you.
This kayak is ideal for people who are looking for a better experience. It’s not the basic kayak; it has advanced features such as speed, great stability, advanced fishing gear, advanced storage, and maneuverability. You might find that the gear can be overwhelming for the 10 feet kayak. If this is the case, you can opt for the Native Watercraft Slayer Propel 12 or 13. They are more spacious. But we think this is the best luxurious kayak you can have.
Pedal kayak with Mirage Drive: Hobie Mirage Outback
Hobie creates kayaks for anglers across all levels, from beginners to the most experienced. Now the Mirage Outback is luxurious. For starters, it is one of the most expensive kayaks on this list. This is a kayak that you need to be sure of what you want before purchasing it. It also highly rated on Amazon. It exhibits the following features;
- Kick up fins – This kayak is laced with the mirage drive 180 as well as kick back fins. When these fins come across obstacles, they retract, allowing you to maneuver in shallow waters.
- Open deck that allows you to stand as you cast. This spacious deck is also spacious to allow storage for your gear.
- This kayak features the adjustable Vantage CT seat. This seat is highly raised for comfort and to prevent you from getting wet.
- 4 rod holders.
- This kayak is stealthy, quiet, and highly versatile.
- It has dual steering rods and the new Hobie’s kick-up rudder. This protects the rudder during impact.
- It has a retractable transducer shield.
- Storage hatch in the bow making the items stored easily accessible. There’s also wide storage in the rear to store your cargo.
- Eva Deck pads to prevent sliding as you stand o the deck.
- H-Track mounts for mounting the accessories.
There are pedal kayaks for people from all walks of life. There are those with basic features for normal kayaking, and there are advanced for the experienced anglers. When looking for a luxurious
Best Pedal Kayaks for Beginners:
You could never go wrong with Hobie’s pedal kayaks. They make a wide range of kayaks for a wide range of users, from beginners to the more experienced. The
- Breathable aluminum seat – The seat is made to keep you in the right position as you pedal. It is also adjustable to allow you to maintain the balance of the kayak in relation to your weight.
- Classic Mirage Drive – As mentioned earlier, Hobie is responsible for the mirage drive. It is easy to use and doesn’t require much energy. You can adjust the arms of the pedal cranks to suit different sizes of people.
- Mounting tracks – Every kayaking activity has some accessories you can use. You may need to carry a camera or a smartphone to film your first kayak trip. The mounting tracks allow you to mount your camera, smartphone, rod holders, or any other accessories.
- Storage hatches – This kayak comes with ample storage to store your gear. Unlike other kayaks that may have open storage, these storage hatches have a twist-n-seal which prevents water from reaching your items.
- Rudder – The
Hobie Mirage10.5 Passport has a rudder and a steering rod close to your seat. The rudder is retractable, and you can deploy it manually.
- Open storage – Not all cargo can fit in the storage hatches. That is why this kayak has open storage on the deck, and bungee cords to hold these items in place. You can bring a cooler with you as you fish.
- Paddle – I did mention that you may need to paddle at some point. This kayak comes with a paddle that you could use to launch yourself into the water, or to maneuver in shallow waters. Better yet, this paddle doesn’t occupy space on the kayak since it can be stored on the sides of the kayak.
What makes it ideal for a beginner?
- For starters, if you’re shifting from paddle kayaks, this kayak comes with an extra paddle. This allows you to switch from peddling to paddling until you get used to using the pedal system.
- The kayak exhibits excellent performance, while it’s still easy to use. The steering system is also straightforward to use and sensitive to your movement. In a few weeks, you’re be peddling like a pro. It’s so beginner-friendly that you can even get one for your kids.
- This kayak is light and resilient too. As a beginner, the last thing you’d want is a kayak that keeps fracturing or getting dents. You also wouldn’t like a kayak that’s too heavy to carry around. The removable drive system and the seat allow you to transport it to the water body with no hassle.
- The storage hatch can carry many items, and the seal prevents these items from getting wet.
Most kayaks have advanced features and are quite expensive. However, as a beginner, you only need the basic functions of a kayak. These are speed, stability, comfort, storage, resilience, and is easy to use. The Mirage Passport 10.5 brings you these basic features at an affordable price. This kayak can also be used by all members of the family, from kids to the elderly. As you advance, you can buy extra accessories for the various kayaking activities you’re involved in. You can also consider purchasing one of Hobie’s advanced kayaks.
Other companies that offer kayaks for beginners include;
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