Review Detail

 
Old Town Predator 13
 
Old Town Predator 13 2013-07-16 01:01:10 scallen
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
4.0
scallen Reviewed by scallen    July 15, 2013
Last updated: July 15, 2013 View all my reviews

Old Town Predator

I have sat on kayaks for 10 hours at a stretch before. Even done it for three or four days in a row. Never had one as comfy as the Old Town Predator, though! The adjustable hi-lo-'flip out of the way' fabric and frame seat is a dream. No leg cramps, no back aches. The boat itself is so roomy and wide, I found myself sitting lotus style while paddling down the John Day River recently. The higher seat position also helped me in tilting the kayak to respond to currents and rapids. This boat is so stable, I needed the higher center of gravity to get some tilt going.

The width could be a problem if you have a short paddle. I used a 240 Carlisle Expedition that was plenty long enough to clear the gunnels on my regular stroke, and to dig deep when using a more vertical stroke in the rapids.

Old Town included a number of innovative additions to this model that increase its usefulness and value. The six mounting plates, strategically placed for accessories (No more drilling into your hull); Horizontal rod holders with rod-tip protectors on the bow (Especially good for fly-rods); Molded in paddle holders that keep your paddle stable in one position across the cockpit; Click-lick front hatch seal; Mod-Pod center hatch for hull access; Stiffener bar behind the seat will accept rail-mount accessories; Transducer-molded scupper like the Trident series from Ocean Kayaks; The list goes on.

Practically speaking I found this an ideal craft for a four-day wild river trip. It hauled lots of gear, both inside the kayak and strapped in the large tankwell area. Despite all the weight of camping equipment, the boat performed very well in current and rapids considering the keel and bow design. Stand-up fishing is sweet on this boat. I don't do much stand-up myself, but I had to at least try with the Predator, and found it easy to get up (thanks to the assist strap) and very stable once I was standing. With the seat flipped out of the way there is an incredible amount of deck space for stand up. The deck itself is molded with a pattern termed "Exo-Ridge." It stays pretty dry and is very slip-proof with bare feet, booties, and Teva sandals.

Old Town hit a home run for those who are looking for an all-around fishing kayak, with an emphasis on freshwater lakes, ponds, and rivers. The hull design is such that bays and ocean fishing are quite do-able as well, and this will prove to be an excellent flats boat.

It's not quite as nimble or as fast as other kayaks, but I daresay it's as stable as any on the market at this time without being a slug on the water.

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