Anyone who’s spent time online searching for an inflatable kayak knows one thing—there’s a heck of a lot of inflatable kayaks available. And these kayaks are available in a wide variety of colors, have diverse features and often have many interesting sounding “techno terms.” Moreover, the price range of inflatable kayaks range from the dirt-cheap to the ultra-expensive.
To help people who are shopping for an inflatable kayak choose the right boat for their needs, I created this article on Big Sky Fishing. The purpose of this page is to explain the following:
Good Inflatable Kayaks vs. Cheap Inflatable Kayaks
There are two types of inflatable kayaks in this world today, good ones and bad ones. What is the difference between the two? Simple, really – construction. Good inflatable kayaks are boats that, with proper care, will easily last a decade or more, even with extensive use. Meanwhile, a bad inflatable kayak will be lucky to last the summer, often requiring numerous patch jobs.
So, how bad are “bad inflatable kayaks?” Real bad. I know. I’ve had several. These types of inflatable kayaks are generally purchased at mass marketers, like Wal-Mart, K-Mart, etc..They look nice out of the box. And they are cheap, around $150 or so. Yet, like a horror movie that doesn’t reveal the plot until the end of the movie, these inflatable kayaks will rear up and show their ugly side at times when you least expect or desire it.
See, poor quality inflatable kayaks are prone to rips in the seams of the boat. This is a very bad thing, since rips in the seams can not be adequately repaired. Additionally, the thin fabric on these boats will constantly get punctures. While these punctures are relatively easy to fix, it is still a pain trying to track them all down.
All said and done, save yourself some grief and get a good inflatable kayak, one that will last and that won’t require constant tender-loving-care. If you just need a inflatable kayak for the kids to paddle around on a small pond or something, well, these cheap inflatable kayaks may be just the ticket. But for any serious fishing or river floating use, especially uses that lead into remote areas, don’t even think of using a cheap inflatable kayak.