Tag Archive: cartop

To cartop (car top) a kayak means to lift it on top of a car and attach it there

Cap’n Larry Jarboe: The Boat That Does It All

Quite a few years ago, back in the mid-1970’s, I was fortunate to work as a mate then captain of a large passenger carrying boat that took people snorkeling on the shallow coral reefs of John Pennekamp State Park in Key Largo, Florida.

I promoted our business with the phrase “If you can swim, you can snorkel.” Twice a day, we hauled up to 61 passengers a trip on a wooden Harkers Island-built boat to witness the amazing coral reefs and tropical fish that are found right here in the United States.

Today, the State Park concession that I worked from has about 4 multi-passenger snorkel boats that have evolved from that one vessel.

Like snorkeling, there are many marine sports that have sprouted over my lifetime.

Obviously, canoes have been with us for many years. But, who figured out that you could sit on top of a kayak or stand up to paddle a fat surfboard? These are relatively recent innovations that have attracted a huge following.

Then, there are those Wave Runners. When I grew up in the Fifties, we never figured you could have a motorcycle that flew across the water.

All of those sports are fun for those of us who swim but owning all four: a canoe, kayak, paddle board and Wave Runner is expensive, space consuming, and a major maintenance hassle.

What if one vessel did all this, and more?

The Wavewalk catamaran style skiff is the stable and portable boat that literally, does it all. A visit to the company website at wavewalk.com will show you the W500 and W700 solo and tandem twin hull kayaks that are easy on your back because they are straddled like a Wave Runner. Fishermen are especially fond of the Wavewalk design because they are so easy to stand up in order to spot or cast to their prey.

These magic boats can be paddled with kayak or canoe paddles or outfitted for gas outboard or electric trolling motor or both! And, they are lightweight enough to carry on top of your car without a special carrying rack or trailer.

I discovered the Wavewalk design while I was searching the Internet for the perfect kayak to establish a retirement rental business in Key Largo. My first Wavewalk was purchased at retail price. That little W500 was so good that I used it in my commercial fishing business in the Chesapeake region to supply Blue Catfish fillets to Linda’s Cafe in downtown Lexington Park and the Victorian Candle Bed and Breakfast in historic Hollywood, Maryland.

At present, in addition to two commercial fishing work boats, I have a fleet of Wavewalk kayaks for weekend Wavewalk Adventures in the State Parks and National Sanctuaries that surround Key Largo.

And, I am fortunate to be the exclusive Wavewalk distributor for all of South Florida. Contact me if you are in the Chesapeake region and I can arrange for you to have your own Wavewalk kayak.

On a nearly daily basis, I motor my green W700 skiff through mangrove creeks or out in the ocean to make my own adventures exploring places that are almost impossible to reach by any other method of marine conveyance. This Wavewalk lifestyle is a most wonderful and unexpected retirement pastime that I am most happy to share.

So, if you are tired of being cold this winter and want an excuse to visit the Florida Keys, you have one (as if you really need an excuse to visit paradise).

A trip to my website at floridafishingkayaks.com. will provide all the info you need to schedule a free Wavewalk Wednesday demo of this vessel. Or, a weekend rental with included guide service might be a way to enjoy a complete kayak, canoe, stand-up paddle board package in a boat that “does it all.”

Who knows? You might drive home with one.

Welcome aboard.

Cap’n Larry Jarboe

 

 

More fishing adventures with Capn’ Larry »

 

Happy Birthday W700!

It’s been a year since we launched the W700 series, the third generation of Wavewalks, and our biggest and costliest project so far. So this may be a good time to look at our thoughts and expectations prior to designing this product, and compare them to reality, as we can perceive it at this point in time.

Technically Speaking

-How does the actual product compare to the plan?

Although we made no prototype for the W700, we had enough prior knowledge, and that helped us extrapolate, calculate and foresee its actual performance. Our design for the saddle was extremely innovative, but the driving notion for it was ‘build strong’, so we had no doubt that it would work well.
This boat has fulfilled all our requirements and exceeded our expectations with its gliding capability and ease of paddling in both a tandem and solo modes. It does exactly what we expected it to do when motorized, and we expected a lot, including both the driver and passenger standing up, and full offshore capabilities.
We were also relieved to see that although the W700 weighs 20 lbs more than the W500, car-topping it is still very easy.
Stability wise, we knew the W700 would be the world’s most stable kayak, but we wondered how such stability would feel like – Now we know that the W700 feels “Ridiculously Stable”, namely that it defies the user’s senses. In other words, it delivers a stability level that can be experienced only in full size motorboats.

-Problems?

None, so far. In twelve months we received no complaints about this new product, and no one has made any kind of negative comment about it. Ironically, one client, a scientist from British Columbia, Canada, who had been using a W500 for his work prior to getting a W700, commented that the new boat was “too stable”, because when he took a second crew member on board, that person felt so stable that they stood up right away, and without warning…

-New and meaningful developments

The introduction of the Joystick Steering System has made driving the W700 comfortable, easy, and fun, both seated and standing. Solving the ergonomic problems associated with driving also increased the range of travel of the W700, and added a new dimension to it as a sporty leisure watercraft that one drives for fun, and not just to get from point A to point B, or for touring.

Market Performance and Position

Despite being over 50% more expensive than the W500, the W700 outsells the W500 by a wide margin, and it has become Wavewalk’s main product line. In its first year, we sold almost as many W700 units as our business plan for it had projected that we’d sell in the first three years.
Many clients have told us that they had bought their W700 after considering buying a motorboat, e.g. Jon boat, skiff, and in one case a pontoon boat, and they didn’t buy their W700 as a fishing kayak, or even as a motorized kayak. Currently, we ship a motor mount with one out of three W700 units. These facts mean a lot to us.
Thanks to its lower price, the W700 R base model outsells all other 700 models combined, but we think it’s significant that the newly created, expensive W700 Z model that includes ‘Everything, From A To Z’ comes second, although in much more modest numbers.

Looking forward to the second year

-DIY

Some W700 owners have already started outfitting their boats in innovative ways, and we look forward to more interesting projects, reports, and movies.

-RIB / RHIB

Rigid-Inflatable Boats, namely boats that feature a hull, or part of it that’s rigid, and parts that are made from inflatable tubes or chambers, are popular in a broad variety of boating applications and environments, and our own experience with the W700 shows that we can go further in this direction, and offer additional RIB / RHIB models in the 700 series.

-New type of boat

Years ago, we positioned the W500 as a ‘Super Kayak’, and over time, together with our clients, we have proved that it is indeed a superlative kayak, and the world’s best one-person fishing kayak, according to people who use it.
We think we can do the same with the W700 as a ‘Super Boat’, in the sense that it delivers high performance not just as a kayak and a motorized kayak, but as a small, car-top boat that competes with other small boats and skiffs, as such. This is not a minor challenge, in view of the fact that there are so many different boats out there, but so far it looks like we’re in the right direction.

Thanks

The list of people who have been involved in conceiving this watercraft and doing R&D with it as initial users is getting longer, and this makes it harder for us to thank each one of them separately. But we know who they are, and they who they are, and we want to use this opportunity of the W700’s first birthday to thank them again.
We look forward to doing more interesting and yes, sometimes crazy stuff, and from now on we’ll try to avoid getting sunburned… 😀

Wavewalk® 700: Quick and Easy Car-Top Boat

This instructional video shows a quick and easy way to upload this trailer free boat on top of a midsize and large size SUVs from the vehicle’s side.

Note that it’s possible to upload this boat on top of cars and smaller SUVs either from the vehicle’s front, or from its rear end.

 

Before you car top your fishing boat

Tip 1

Outboard motor and fishing gear should go in the back of your vehicle before you start car topping your boat. Although the paddle fits in the hulls, we recommend putting it inside the car as well.

Tip 2

Protect the car’s roof with a big towel, and do the same for the door.

Tip 3

Attach a short rope between the two front eyelets. This extra handle will come handy at a certain point, when you lift the boat up.

Tip 4

You want to use the eyelets on the sides of the front and the rear ends of the W700 cockpit as leads for the ropes or straps that you’ll use to attach it to the roof rack. It’s easier to get the rope through these eyelets while the boat is still on the ground, before you upload it. Common buckle straps are inexpensive and easy to use, and they work perfectly.

First impression from our Wavewalk 700

By Jon Cohen

Massachusetts

My W700 arrived on last Monday. My son wanted to head out to the nearest pond straight away but the rain put a stop to that. The weather was much improved on Wednesday afternoon so we headed out for our first trip! We carried the boat out of the house (happy wife 🙂 ) and easily loaded it on top of our SUV. I ran nylon tie-down straps through the pad eyes and secured the boat to the rack.
We arrived at the pond, removed the straps and had the W700 in the water in 5 minutes.
My son and I stepped in and pushed off from the shore. Good call on recommending the 9′ paddle. Paddling was easy. So easy that my 13 year old volunteered to take over.
There was a fair amount of wind but it didn’t seem to cause us any problems. We spent a very comfortable (no back ache) hour on the pond, stepped out (dry of course) and loaded the boat back on our SUV in no time.
My son decided he was cold so he headed in to the house as soon as we got back home leaving me to remove the boat from the SUV. No problem! It is so easy to handle. I took it down and slid it across my yard to the storage area at the back of my house.
We’ve been out three times so far and I already caught my first fish of the season!
Looking forward to many more fishing trips in my W!

 

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Roomy cockpit for two anglers

 

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A day on Lake Ouachita

Scot and Mary Alice VanHorn

Arkansas

We absolutely love the Wavewalk 700! It’s everything we were promised it would be!
We’ve had it out a couple of times due to busy schedules but I’ve never enjoyed kayaking as much as I have with this kayak! It tracks beautifully just as promised, and so comfortable to sit in for long periods of time!
We absolutely love it and recommend it to everyone we talk to!
It’s also a dream to transport. It’s so light and easy to put on top of the truck, strap it down and away we go!
Thank you for such a beauty of a vessel! Love it!

Here’s a couple of pics of the kayak and Scot out on the lake. Loved every minute of it! Thanks!

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Scot canoeing on lake Ouachita

 

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The Wavewalk beached

 

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