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I'm sure this has been discussed before but I want some fresh advice. I am about to buy a fishing kayak and am willing to spend around $1000 for the full setup. I have heard a lot of good stuff about the Tarpon 120, but some of the additional stuff I would need (paddle, roof rack, etc) would put me over $1000. Does anybody have any experience/advice on a cheaper option? I would spend most of my time in Minnesota rivers and small lakes.

 

Thanks!

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Do not underestimate the importance of comfort. For $1,000, you should be able to get a kayak that has a raised, stadium-style seat, which the Tarpon 120 doesn’t have.

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For $1000 look into the Nucanoe flint, Perception Pescador pro 12, or the Vibe sea ghost 13. All three of those have comfortable seats and good layouts for fishing. The Vibe comes with a rudder and a paddle. The others don't so you'll have to factor that into the cost. While the tarpon is a great yak the newer seats make a world of differance for comfort.

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If you were in Texas, you'd have a huge supply of used kayaks on the market at your price point. It could be the same up there. But, I'd definitely buy a used vessel of a slightly higher quality, one that might be more in the $1500 range new.

 

One to consider that I think you could find for $1000 would be a Jackson Big Rig. Big, yes, but it comes with 3 rod holders, lots of track, built-in receptacle areas on each side of its seat for Plano tackle boxes for your tackle, a stand assist bar, a built in "track" to run an anchor line from around your hand position inside your vessel all the way back to the stern to drop a chain anchor, etc. 

 

Too, it is one of the few truly stand-able fishing kayaks. Yes, many claim to do it from less wide platforms but you will rarely see it on the water. They will fish on their butts all day. A Big Rig and a Hobie PA 14, both 38" wide, a few of the Diablo kayaks, too, are among the few that you can do it more care-free.

 

So, common after-market purchases that really add up? Rod holders, anchor trolleys, tackle storage devices. I don't think there is a better kayak than a Big Rig in terms of literally being able to get in one, stock with no after-market add-ons, and just bring along a rod and reel and hit the water.

 

It is a big vessel at 99 lbs. with seat in place, so consider a set of cart wheels which you will likely need for just about any kayak you purchase over 80 lbs. or so.

 

Brad

 

http://jacksonkayak.com/blog/kayak/big-rig/

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Hobie has a new kayak out the lanii. It’s only a paddle drive smaller but I think you could get into it for less than 900. I’m not sure if it for your needs but I’d check it out

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2 hours ago, PECo said:

Do not underestimate the importance of comfort. For $1,000, you should be able to get a kayak that has a raised, stadium-style seat, which the Tarpon 120 doesn’t have.

 I would rather fish off of a couple planks of wood nailed together with an $800 seat strapped to them than the nicest kayak in the world with an old style buttbucket seat.  

 

 

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Like Brad mentioned, watch your local adds for a used rig. You can get into a higher quality yak for less.

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BPS Ascend 12T

i got one last year on clearance, and it's a nice, comfortable, stable yak! For well under $1000 ($649 retail)

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I haven't ever paddled one, but the Vibe Seaghost get's a ton of great reviews. There is a shop not far from me that has the Seaghost 130 for $899, and that includes a rudder and paddle. May be worth checking out.

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Thanks for all the responses guys, you've given me lots to think about. The Seaghost does look pretty impressive. 

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I have a Pelican Catch 120 and I love it. It's made to be very stable so standing is no problem. Lots of storage space and most importantly a VERY comfortable seat which can be put on 2 positions. Being on the water for long periods can be tough if you have bad seating. Remember, whichever kayak you choose, make sure you see it, sit and stand on it even at the store and just get the overall feel and you can't go wrong. Good fishing.

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I would give a good look at the Feel Free Lure 10 for your budget - the 10 comes in right under 1000, and looks to be one of the most stable kayaks for that price range.  Lots of reviews stating people can stand on it comfortably, if you're interested in doing that.  I have been weighing between the 10 and the 11.5, and am finally thinking to go with the 11.5 just because of some of the added features, better tracking, more comfort, and ability to upgrade over the 10.  The gravity seat that comes with these kayaks is supposed to be one of the most comfortable, which you can get an idea of just from looking at it.  ACK offers a package deal, where you can get 10% off your entire order if you order the kayak, a paddle, and a PFD.  With that in mind, you could get all three of those things for under 1100.  

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