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Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOTSanta Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT

Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOTSanta Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT

Kayak Specs

Length
13' 0"
Width
34"
Weight
62 lbs
Capacity
360 lbs
Base Price
US $950
Main Propulsion
Paddle
Rudder
Optional
Passengers
1
Hull Type
Sit-On-Top
Production Status
Available

Manufacturer

Brand
Santa Cruz Kayaks

THE DIFFERENCES:

The Raptor’s uniquely shaped bow is designed to shred waves, deflect spray, yet still maintains a low profile reducing the effects of windage.

  • Though comparable in weight, its width, measured along the seat section, is much narrower. This allows for easy paddle strokes and it’s easy on the knuckles too.
  • The pontoons also help to shield the rudder from any rocks or bumps you may accidentally encounter.  The stiff keels are the thickest area since they take the most wear.   You can store the kayak on any cross rack  without worry about deformation.

FEATURES:

  • Optional Live Bait Tank with scupper recess to fit the Attwood live bait pump.
  • Patented Design : wave piercing bow with a wide stern for enhanced stability.
  • On-Board Storage: gasketed center hatch, bow storage for over sized gear
  • Optional Storage: dual access hatches at pontoons
  • Self Bailing Scupper Holes
  • Adjustable Foot braces
  • On deck recess to hold fishing poles/spearguns and paddles/li>

User reviews

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Average user rating from: 6 user(s)

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Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0  (6)
 
Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT 2014-03-26 02:32:43 Doug M
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0
Doug M Reviewed by Doug M    March 25, 2014 View all my reviews

Santa Cruz Raptor SOT

Having been a fisherman my entire life and a kayak fisherman the last 20 plus. I have always looked for the Perfect kayak.There is not one, but there are ones that fit your needs the best.My needs are a kayak that can paddle a long distance in bad weather(chop and wind) without beating you up so badly that you are shot by the time you get to a spot 3 miles away.Has a layout that is fishing friendly as well, and I like to stand up and sight fish also which makes finding a yak even more difficult.My last 2 most used yaks out of the dozens I have fished on have been a Tarpon 16 and Heritage redfish 14 both with outriggers.
I found one that has so far been the Best for my needs.After fishing off the Raptor for 14 straight days my thoughts

THE HULL
the first thing anyone will notice about the hull is its unique shape.A very sharp entry gradually going back to dual pontoons.Gives the yak a really cool wedge shape.Looks fast sitting still.Looks like a predator..The Raptor name is appropriate.Flip it over and you notice right after the sharp entry that has chines to deflect spray down the hull goes into a concave much like a tunnel boat/catamaran that puts all the displacement to the outer edges.

SPEED
This kayak is as fast as any 13 foot fishing kayak I have fished.And it is "quiet".I hate noisy yaks.Beside spooking fish the thumping all day is annoying.
It handles wave chop very well.The nose will ramp up a bit into the chop but will cut through the bigger chop due to the sharp entry.In a strong headwind you do not feel that the yak is giving you much wind drag.

TRACKING
I am a big fan of rudders on most yaks over 12 feet.This one does not really need it.It tracks straight as an arrow but will turn really well with just a little shift in weight.This surprised me.It also does not wind cock like swede form kayaks.It will actually turn down wind slowly when you stop which is really nice for drifting.

STABILITY
Being that My 2 passions are sight fishing and photography I need a really stable kayak.Why I have had outriggers on most all my yaks.Leaning over to take a shot off the yak and ruining really expensive camera equipment can make for a really bad day.This yak rates a ten.You would have to really try to pull the yak over to flip it.The initial stability is an 8 and secondary is ten.No out riggers going on this yak.To give a comparison it is way more stable then some 36" kayaks without being the paddling tubs they are.

LAYOUT
I love the layout for fishing.There is a nice center hatch that you can throw wallet/phone/ lures/water bottle in.You could cut out the center to make a large hull access which I have done in other yaks but I feel no need to.It has a center rib for mounting tracks and the 2 sides can accept tracks as well.The center hatch is a good size and scooting up front it is is rock solid as the nose does not dive down and the yak is sooo... stable, it was strange compared to accessing other yaks front hatches,Sweet.It has bungee straps on the left and right side to quickly strap down a paddle or fishing rod.The tank well is a good size and more usable because the well is wider then long and you can reach everything in it with ease.Wells that go to far back are too difficult to reach.
The other thing you will notice is that the area you sit is narrow and makes paddling really easy without smacking your knuckles on the side of the yak like the wider ones.No need for a giant paddle. When you throw your legs over the side it the easiest of any yak I have been on.You feel like you can jump up and stand or turn around to the tank well in a heart beat.I am 6"1 and I wish the foot position was just a tad wider but for those under 6" your foot position should be fine.

PORTABILITY
because of the shape this kayak is the easiest I have ever handled.when you drag it it will not flip.Sliding it up on a roof with the 2 handles makes it a dream to move around.makes it feel lighter then it is.

CONCLUSION
For my purposes this is the best yak I have come across as a combination of speed, stability,portability and fish ability I have been on.The only 2 modifications I would make on it would be that the foot position be a bit wider for standing and the bow entry be a bit more vertical like a Hobie to prevent the slight ramping in chop. I am truly impressed with this kayak .A truly innovative design.Best overall kayak I have been on . Doug M

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Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT 2014-01-27 23:12:29 Prof. Salt
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0
Prof. Salt Reviewed by Prof. Salt    January 27, 2014 View all my reviews

Santa Cruz Raptor Great Offshore

I took delivery of my Raptor SOT late last summer and made several trips offshore before the season ended. It handles the chop well and surf is really surprising. Going out through the breakers, the pointed nose and downward sloping sides let the boat pierce and divide the surf for very minimal resistance. It's so much faster heading out than my old kayak (I won't name drop, but it is an established offshore design). I had talked to Jim Martin, the designer and owner of Santa Cruz Kayaks, and he assured me that I should try coming in through the surf by riding the waves. No kidding! At first I tried coming in slowly the way I had learned in other kayaks. Finally I summoned my courage and tried it, fully realizing that for most kayaks this is the fastest way to roll over, but to my surprise and relief the kayak surfs along the wave face beautifully. It took a little getting used to, but it sure beat the old slow re-entry style! I use the paddle to brace on the high side as the Raptor drives to the beach.

Paddling is very comfortable because the kayak's front end is thin from the tip to just behind the seat. No banging your knuckles on the side during paddle strokes. The offshore chop does have a different feel in this boat when oriented perpendicular to the wave direction. Different? Yes, but I quickly got accustomed to it, and it still maintains that rock solid stability.

One of my favorite things about this kayak is how it behaves while drifting baits offshore. Left alone, it orients itself with the nose down wind. This is awesome! I usually run two rods out the back, so it really simplifies things if I am not required to keep paddling to orient the kayak to keep the baits spread apart.

There is a new optional seat plate available that allows you to mount a traditional boat seat on the kayak, and it's very solid but easily removeable. After adding the seat of your choice ride height is elevated a few inches but stability doesn't seem to suffer. And the best part? It feels like sitting on the couch at home. I love my new seat! If I choose to use the old kayak saddle for some reason, the seat and base plate are removed within seconds.

My last offshore trip of the season was during October, and the fish were really thick. Sharks were too, and I lost a realy large Kingfish at kayak side when it was ravaged by a huge bull shark. I kept fishing and hooked a bull that would have measured at least 7.5 ft. It took nearly three hours, but I finally got it boatside for some photos and video before cutting it loose.

Paddling this boat is easy, due to the keels in the rear of the boat. They keep the kayak tracking straight through the water until you ask it to turn. I have owned Ocean Kayak and Malibu models and enjoyed them, but this design is superior for fishing offshore. The combination of speed and stability still boggles my mind. I didn't believe that combination was possible until I experienced it. Now I don't plan to go back!

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Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT 2013-08-04 16:10:17 seniorlady
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0
seniorlady Reviewed by seniorlady    August 04, 2013 View all my reviews

Santa Cruz Raptor Review

I recently purchased a Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT after many e-mail discussions with the owner of Santa Cruz Kayaks, Jim Martin. I watched so many videos, and read so many reviews, while I was in Florida last winter, that I just had to have one. If there are any negative reviews out there by people who actually own, or have paddled, a Raptor, I haven't seen them.

I have been paddling on a fairly small lakes in pretty smooth water sometimes with a fairly stiff breeze. I have noticed very little wind resistance and the Raptor tracked beautifully and is very quiet on the water. It is a longer yak than the sit-in I have been using the past two years, by a foot, and I felt it was a little slow to turn compared to my sit-in. I haven't paddled my Tarpon for a few years so can't compare to that. After using my Raptor a few times, I don't feel that anymore. Unfortunately, since I brought one home, the weather has been nasty on the east coast and we have only been able to get out and fish six or eight times, on a couple of different lakes, but I love the Raptor. It is very stable and easy to get back into from hip high water. Being an older female, and a little out of shape, I might have trouble getting back in from deep water but plan to rig something up that I can quickly get to, and snap between the pontoons, that I can step on if I need to. If I have difficulty getting back in from deep water, it's because of me and not the Raptor. The yak is that stable!

I love fishing out of the Raptor and it is so easy to paddle with the narrower front profile and easy to sit sideways, backwards, stand up, just about any way you want without any indication that it is going to roll/turtle. My husband paddled it with me sitting on the tank well with my legs dangling off the back. Another thing is that even weighing 62 pounds, which is unbelievable to me that it weighs that much, I can handle the Raptor on land, and it is easy to load. Carrying my half from the pontoon end (two hands), or shoving it up an embankment by myself, is easy compared to using one handle on the other yaks. Because of the way it is designed it seems very well balanced and doesn't want to get away from you when loading. I can't wait to get the Raptor on the water in Florida next winter or sooner.

I have been rigging the Raptor with mostly RailBlaza accessories and a few Scotty that I had, and some GearTrac tracks. Very versatile. Right now, I'm using a crate but there is a live bait tank that is available and fits right in the tank well with an Atwood pump. I may be tempted to get one to have on hand. I also installed the 4" hatches, in the rear recesses on the pontoons, designed for that. Gives good access for securing accessories, to get something out that has slid back, and to carry small items in the available pouch. There is a lot of available storage and you can easily carry rods inside the hull. The "glove box" in front of the seat area is great for storing all those small items you want easy access to.

I remember when everyone said that the number one peddle kayak would never become popular; if people will give this Raptor SOT, or sit-in, a try I think they will be very pleasantly surprised.

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Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT 2013-07-19 17:33:35 kayakobsessions.com
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0
kayakobsessions.com Reviewed by kayakobsessions.com    July 19, 2013 View all my reviews

Santa Cruz Raptor in tight spots freshwater

We are a Santa Cruz dealer in Thousand Oaks, California, www.santacruzkayaks.com supplied us with a demo model to use, we have paddled it in the saltwater, which it performed flawlessly, especially in the surf, but we had the opportunity to take it to some remote bodies of water in Independence, which is just south of Bishop.
These lakes and slews are a largemouth bass haven and are thick with reeds and trees. Limited launch areas and some very tight spaces proved to be no problem for the Raptors 13 foot length, where some may opt for a shorter sit inside kayak, we chose the Raptor, mainly for the ability to stand and sight fish these tight areas.
We were pleasantly surprised of how we were able to turn this boat on a dime when necessary to navigate the reeds and trees. When the wind picked up as it does on occasion, there was no trouble keeping the kayak where we wanted it, the Raptor paddled easily in 10 to 15 mph winds, where the smaller boats had trouble.
The unique hull design of this boat is very stealthy when you need a quiet presence in very quiet surroundings, stable enough to stand and cast, yet extremely fast when you want to get to another area quickly, and if you are lucky and have the wind at your back it "hauls the mail".
Steering the boat is effortless which allows the paddler to focus on the paddling instead of constantly compensating for drift, another advantage is with two opposite strokes this boat will do a 180 degree turn, very impressive.
We give it a five star rating.










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Santa Cruz Kayaks Raptor SOT 2012-11-06 21:59:43 chris pascua
Overall Rating of this Kayak For Fishing. 
 
5.0
chris pascua Reviewed by chris pascua    November 06, 2012 View all my reviews

Raptor Sit On Top Kayak

I went out for the first beach launch in The new Model Raptor after watching my friends get washed up on shore in there hobies, when I seen how much gear they dumped into the ocean I knew i couldn't afford to dump my tackle into the ocean, attempting to launch into whitewater surf. looking into the surf I had to admit I looked a little ruff. The Raptor cut through the surf and sliced right through the waves to make it out on the water without losing any of my gear!. Once I was out on the water I couldn't of been more comfortable is a perfect fit for beach launches and stable enough to take a nap on out in the ocean. when the first few waves came crashing over the cockpit hull I was very impressed with how fast the water drained through the scupper holes and maintained its stability when getting tossed through the tide launching into what seemed like a wall of surf. FAST and I mean a few strokes on the water and you can really get this yak moving!! STABLE!! hang off the side and relax your legs without worrying about flipping over, easy to climb back on out of the water most imprtantly easy to transport. the New Raptor is a Smash hit in my book everyone loves the design. I would recommend the sit on top model to eveyone who wants a stable Kayak with a solid platform either fishing diving or just to enjoy out on the water!

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