‘First Impressions’ W Kayak Review, By Sam Wire & Sons, California

I have two sons, one 10 and one 8. I put one of them on one end of the cabin, myself in the middle, and the other son on the other end of the cabin. The one sitting behind me faces the opposite direction so he can fish out the back of the boat. When we weren't casting into the weed beds, we were trolling around the lake. I was the trolling motor and my kids each would put a pole in the water on opposite sides of the boat. This boat is just roomy enough for me to fit myself and the two kids in the boat so we can all go fishing at once. It is incredibly stable.

I took my kids on a day fishing trip to Calero Reservoir yesterday. Fantastic day! My oldest son told me it was the best day of his life. We didn’t even catch any fish! He just loved paddling around in the boat.

I have two sons, one 10 and one 8. I put one of them on one end of the cabin, myself in the middle, and the other son on the other end of the cabin. The one sitting behind me faces the opposite direction so he can fish out the back of the boat. When we weren’t casting into the weed beds, we were trolling around the lake. I was the trolling motor and my kids each would put a pole in the water on opposite sides of the boat. This boat is just roomy enough for me to fit myself and the two kids in the boat so we can all go fishing at once. It is incredibly stable. This particular lake is a water ski lake so we often had boat wakes to deal with. Boat wakes make me nervous in a traditional kayak, but they are no concern in the W500.

I took it out for it’s maiden voyage last weekend. I went to Manresa State Beach just outside Watsonville, CA. Anyway, the plan was to go fishing but surf was quite large that day and given my inexperience with the W500, I was worried I’d lose my tackle. So I left all the tackle in the truck and just took the W for a joyride. My 8 year old and I dawned our life jackets and paddled out to sea thru 4 foot waves! The waves were going over the top of our heads. But keeping the W500 pointed straight into them, I was able to safely paddle out thru the waves. I had some water to bail out of the boat but we got thru the surf just fine.
Coming back in, we weren’t so fortunate. We made it all the way to knee deep water (really shallow water) when a wave dumped us. In retrospect, I should have jumped out of the boat sooner. But, practice makes perfect.
Your product proved to be superior to anything else out there. I just needed to learn how to use it.

Sam Wire

kayak trip report and review, N. CaliforniaUpdate: Read Sam’s story about his recent fishing trips with his 2 sons >>


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6 Comments

  1. W kayak

    Thanks Sam,
    Every line in your review was perfectly vivid, and made me remember the adventures I had with my own two sons, now aged 15 and 12… We did some pretty goofy stuff together, and had a lot of fun, until they decided they could paddle on their own…
    Some of their adventures are documented here: http://www.wavewalk.com/CHILDREN_KAYAK_FISHING.html
    Yoav

  2. Pete

    Great review – a pleasure to read!
    Tandem paddling the W in big surf can be tricky:
    First, you lose the special W advantage in surf launching, which consists of having you sitting in the back of the cockpit and by doing that raising the bow, and going over the breakers instead of through them…
    With a tandem crew, the front passenger makes it impossible to raise the bow effectively… so both of you can get splashed, especially the front passenger 🙂
    Using a cockpit cover solves the problem of some spray getting in.
    Second, when you’re paddling in tandem you have less control over the yak when you’re going back to shore and the waves push you at high speed… This is why some practice is necessary, as you said.
    Pete

  3. Pierre

    Practice is always a good thing

  4. April

    Your boys will have happy memories from these trips.
    Next time take some pictures too… It helps remembering 🙂
    April

  5. Rox

    What a great read, and I’m sure even with the end dunking it was a blast.

    Hey, practice makes perfect………………… 🙂

    Tight lines and paddle safe all.
    Rox

  6. Frank Hegedus

    Looks like your’e in my area. (I live near Watsonville) Been wanting to get a W500 but have some issues about being able to get it on the roof of a high roof Sprinter van without help. Looking to find one nearby to find out if I can. If your’e willing to help please e-mail me at frankoheg@msn.com or call 831 761 2625,
    Would much appreciate it, Thanks, Frank

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