Sit-on-top Sea Kayaks

On a recent trip to Maui and the Big Island, we saw a lot of heavy and slow rotomolded sit-on-top sea kayaks in rental and tour operations. While these are often stable they are difficult for one person to carry and car-top.

We wondered how cool it would be to have a high performance touring sit-on-top-kayak for tropical waters or our local waters for offshore adventuring or rock gardening.

Here’s a few that would be ideal for the task..

Recreational and Fishing Kayaks

French company RTM makes some great boats and wave skis. Their Midway kayak is 51 lbs and 14′ long. It has an enclosed hatch, a well in the stern for gear and thigh straps for rough water handling and surfing.

Wilderness Systems Tarpon 140 is 68lbs and has two hatches.

Swell Watercraft from Washington State is the result of a design from the founder of sit-on-tops, Tim Niemier and former Canoe and Kayak publisher, Jim Marsh.

Sit-on-top Sea Kayaks

Mirage Sea Kayaks in Australia have a two sit-on-top sea kayaks which can be used for day trips, open water and overnights. 

The Mirage 583 series in carbon is 38.5 pounds at 19′ in length. It comes with a hatch, foot controlled rudder and venturi’s to drain cockpit water when underway.

The Mirage 533 sit-on-top is 17′ and 36 pounds. It has one hatch, a rudder and venturi’s for draining water.

Surf Skis

Surf skis are high performance sit-on-top kayaks. I have two I use for racing and surfing but they can be used for day trips, light overnights and touring.

The Epic V5 is 14’x23.6″ long, has one hatch, rudder and venturi.  It comes in three weights – Poly: 48.5lbs, Performance: 35.3lbs; Ultra 27.5lbs.

Epic V6 – 17’x23″ long, two hatches, rudder and venturi. Comes in two composite weights, Performance: 39lbs, Ultra: 32lbs.

Epic V7 – 17’x21″ in poly only. Single hatch, rudder, venturi. This is a fast boat!


About Rob Casey – Named a pioneer in the SUP industry by Stand Up Journal, Rob is the author of “Stand Up Paddling Flat Water to Surf and Rivers” and “Kayaking Puget Sound and the San Juans, 60 Trips.” Rob owns SUP school Salmon Bay Paddle in Seattle. He also runs several paddling races throughout the year.
Disclosure: This post may include affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you.



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