Cutting through the water and conquering your fears is fantastic. We all have an adventurous side of our personality. So, when you are getting into whitewater kayaking, it is adventurous as well as thrilling. It can be a bit dangerous, as well. Now, it takes individual paddlers many runs and many years to master this sport. But, when you are just a beginner, you must go slow with the best. Do not hurry—Excel in kayaking by starting with the right Kayak. So, to let you choose your first Kayak, we have listed the five best whitewater kayak for beginners.
For beginner whitewater kayakers, several boat designs go well with them. You are starting from freestyle boats to river runners. There are two essential factors that you must consider while buying a kayak. The first being the rivers you will be kayaking in. And the second one is the purpose or what you are looking to accomplish in this sport.
So, for long, quite long river trips and easy and intermediate water, the river runners are the right choices. Beginners, as well as experts, can use these kayaks. If you start with freestyle kayaking, then a freestyle kayak will be appropriate for you. You can build your kayaking skills with a freestyle kayak and then transfer to the river running. The exciting news is that even a beginner can start with a kayak that an expert will choose for hard whitewater runs. So, the decision is upon you by what you want to get started.
So, in today’s article, we have featured the popular whitewater kayak for beginners. You can give a kickstart to kayaking with these kayaks. To make your choice even more comfortable and more precise, we have also provided a buyer’s guide at the end. So, let’s check out the kayaks below.
Best Selling Whitewater Kayak for Beginners
Top 5 Whitewater Kayak for Beginners Review
1. Driftsun Rover 220
- Durable & Lightweight - Fully inflates to a full sized kayak in less than 10 minutes and weighs a...
The Driftsun Rover 220 comes with surprising versatility. It has a generous 12 feet long and weighs 600 pounds. Rover 220 performs equally great on rough and flat waters. It is of reinforced and layered PVC. Moreover, its high-pressure floor provides excellent stability and rigidity. It can easily withstand abrasions and even dog claws. That’s how strong it is.
You can use this Kayak with your family. But, it is practically made for adventure. This Kayak can easily handle rough profiles. It has eight self-bailing ports, corrosion-resistant hardware, and high-pressure valves. It also comes with a camera mount. So, you can easily capture your adventurous moments and show them to your family and friends later on. You can even carry it easily with its included carry bag. Therefore, transporting Kayak is no big deal.
It comes with a full-size tube. It has 1000D layered PVC side tubes. Thus, protecting you from whitewater side impacts and other obstacles.
The Kayak is puncture-protected with the heavy-duty PVC floor. It does not matter how hard the water is; this Kayak is safe from leakages as well. All thanks to the Halkey Roberts valves.
You can use Driftsun Rover 220 for years as it is durable. Driftsun Rover 220 uses high-quality hardware, keeping it corrosion-free. You do have to worry about the safety of its three air chambers.
The pointed nose and rocker profile of the Kayak improves its performance and make it easier for beginners to play the sport. This sleeping bag also has several tie-down points for attaching and storing additional gears. For your comfort, it has EVA padded seats. So, when you are paddling, you do not face any issues while sitting. The adjustable and removable footrest allows stability and comfort while swimming.
2. Intex Challenger K2 Kayak
If you want to start your kayaking with a partner, then Intex has kept that in mind. You are presenting to you the Intex Challenger K2 Kayak. The Kayak is easy to set up, durable and is fun to use. This is one of the best and cheapest kayaks for beginners in the market.
This Kayak is an inflatable kayak. It is fast and easy to set up. You can pack it up quickly, carry it, and then store it anywhere you want to. The Kayak has durable vinyl, resisting punctures and abrasions. Hence, ultimately exceeding the Kayak’s life. The Kayak gives you effortless navigation, comfortable seating, and a streamlined design, making it fun for anyone to use.
Moreover, National Marine Manufacturer’s Association certified Intex Challenger K2 Kayak for complying with the US Coast Guard Standards. Hence, you get an added advantage of security.
The Intex Challenger K2 Kayak has 30-gauge vinyl plastic, thick, making it durable. It can easily withstand scrapes and getting knocked. Moreover, it is UV resistant, as well. Hence, protecting the Kayak from the scorching sun.
The integrated backseat, as well as the front seat, are adjustable. So, adjust it as per you and your partner’s needs. It is a 2-person kayak. If you wish to use it alone, you can avoid attaching and adjusting the second seat.
It has a unique I-beam floor making it even more rigid, stable, and durable. The two air chambers add to the reliability and safety of the Kayak. Moreover, this also makes the Kayak set up simple. It also comes with rugged, large Boston valves making deflation and inflation of the gear very easy.
The Kayak has a removable skeg that you can remove on shallow water. It also has a comfortable cockpit. Therefore, making long Kayak rides comfortably. This Kayak has a cargo net, keeping all the necessary items conveniently and securely.
Also, the streamlined, sleek design makes it easier for beginners to paddle.
3. Sun Dolphin Aruba Sit-in Kayak
- Large open cockpit with adjustable padded seat with high back support
This Kayak is a nicely priced kayak aimed at making your kayaking enjoyable. It is compact and light. You will hardly find any issue carrying it. With its pointed stern and bow, Aruba Sit-in Kayak keeps you on track and helps you in navigating quickly. This Kayak is best for beginners to establish their comfort in paddling.
As an introductory kayak, this Kayak gives you comfort while paddling. It has a planed hull, promoting more stability. It has more surface area to push the waters. The pointed, semi-upswept bow helps you to glide smoothly and to a more extended area.
With Sun Dolphin Aruba Sit-in Kayak, you will be able to make turns easily. It is the most maneuvrable Kayak. It can easily spin 180 degrees without any problem. You get decent comfort on this Kayak. It is not terrible, but the convenience is worth the money you are paying.
It has a thin back strap for adjustability and support. There is light padding on the cockpit to brace your thighs and knees. Moreover, The Sun Dolphin includes Aruba Sit-in Kayak, a water bottle holder, and also bungee cord paddle holder. It also has a carrying handle on the stern and bow for transport.
This is one of the best inflatable boats. It is light-weighted and easy to handle. The overall weight is 40 pounds. Hence, making it light and easy to take into the water. This is also one of the best portable kayaks.
Moreover, the less plastic used to make the Kayak makes it lighter and easy to handle and take on shoulders.
Great Kayak to start with!
Nonetheless, this Kayak is great for beginners to start with. This is a solid-entry level kayak. Therefore, if you begin kayaking and want a sit-in kayak, you can go for Sun Dolphin Aruba Sit-in Kayak. If you start your career in a pond or a small lake, this is undoubtedly a great kayak.
4. Dagger Mamba 7.6 Kayak
- A forgiving planing-hulled creeker that is stable and predictable
This Kayak is highly versatile. It is not only fast and durable but also great for beginners. It is best for the first time you get in a kayak. Dagger Mamba 7.6 stays with you up to class V+ whitewater. It is also prevalent among veteran kayakers. Dagger Mamba 7.6 Kayak has also won many races. So, let’s check out this famous Kayak.
The Dagger Mamba has been in the market for a while, but it was revamped in 2012. Now, the updated version is refined and even more memorable. It has even more volume distribution. Moreover, it is even faster than its ancestors. Another notable feature is the ball grab handle.
The Dagger Mamba 7.6 Kayak accommodates only one person. It is best suitable for people who want a responsive boat. Dagger Mamba is popular among top performers as well. The Kayak has a tank-style rotomoulded seating. This design gives the user support as well as comfort. There is also back support that offers sufficient stability.
The grid running through the bottom of the seat reduces sliding and slipping. The Kayak has ergonomic seat gear attachment loops and padding. The contour lite backrest will provide you high comfort level whether you are going at high speed or a leisurely speed.
The additional gear attachments on the Kayak are a classy attachment. Moreover, the addition of gear on the back means they do not obstruct your way or cause any mishap. To keep the Kayak dry, this has a molded drain bung.
This Kayak also has a bottle holder. This is a real advantage for people who get thirsty often. And, even you do not get thirsty often, keeping water near hand is essential.
The Dagger Mamba 7.6 Kayak has a mini-cell foam center for buoyancy. It provides a subtle effect that often goes relatively unnoticed.
5. Riot Kayaks Astro 58 Whitewater Playboating Kayak
This one is a playboat kayak. Hence, this means you can perform tricks, and it is very fast in whitewater. This is great for beginners who are very adventurous and loves the thrill. Riot Kayaks Astro 58 has an innovative design and provides an adequate buoyant force. This Kayak lets you float in the air. Moreover, it is small in size and very easy to handle, as well.
The edges of this Kayak are exceptional. It is designed to make effortless turns and cuts in the water. Hence, giving you the appropriate command and control over your Kayak. It is suitable for established paddlers. But it is excellent for beginners as well.
The Kayak’s frame is polyethylene. It weighs around 40 pounds. The Unity seating system is foam, and the backseat is floating. Therefore, giving you great comfort.
This Kayak consists of only one seat. Therefore, you get to enjoy kayaking all by yourself. The backrest gives you appropriate comfort, and your back does not ache or get uncomfortable. Moreover, there is a lesser risk while lags and hard jumps.
There are sure-grip thigh braces that secure your knee nicely, and you stay connected and safe while kayaking. For easy transport and access, you have two rubber handles and two rubber grab loops. For extra security, this Kayak has a preinstalled aluminum security bar.
While you are kayaking, it is quite natural that water will get inside your Kayak. So, to drain it, you have the strong bolted drain plug. But, before you jump into the water, make sure that the plug is tightly corked.
You can easily store this Kayak on a universal storage stand. You can hang it freely from a hook or store it in your storeroom. Hence, Astro 58 is convenient and easy to store as well. Though, it hardly provides you any storage while kayaking.
Buyer’s Guide to buying Whitewater Kayak
Owning your Kayak is an exciting feeling. But, while you choose the right Kayak for yourself, you have to consider specific points. Kayaks are a great source of recreation. So, one wrong choice can be harmful, especially when you are a beginner. Therefore, you must make your choice correctly. Hence, we have provided a buyer’s guide for you to choose the best whitewater kayak for beginners.
- Type- There are commonly two types of Kayaks. One is a sit-on-top, and the other one is a sit-in kayak. When you buy a sit-on-top kayak, the water splashes on you while kayaking, and you get adventurous feels. It is more stable and broader than sit-in kayaks. Moreover, it is easier to balance, as well. Sit-on-top kayaks are great for kids and beginners. Also, it becomes easier to get into the Kayak if you fall off.
On the other hand, sit-in kayaks keep you protected with the cover around your waist. It is best for cold weather as it keeps you warm and dry. Also, if you like to go open waters, it allows you to do so faster. If you are kayaking for fitness, then there’s nothing better than a sit-in kayak.
- Use- You can use a kayak for different purposes. You can use it for recreation or fishing or touring, or even racing. Recreational kayaks are best for having fun. It is perfect for beginners and children. On the other hand, touring kayaks are great for sight-seeing and going to places near water bodies. While fishing, kayaks give you easy access to deep-water fishing. It is light weighted and easy to manoeuvre as well. Lastly, racing kayaks are for experts. These kayaks are too light weighted and narrow and long for racing speeds.
- Materials- You must know and take into consideration your Kayak’s materials. Kayaks are made of different materials. Kayaks can be of aluminium or plastic. Such kayaks fall in the affordable range. They are durable as well. Moreover, these kayaks are best for beginners.
Fiberglass kayaks are easy to handle and carry. These are tough and long-lasting, as well.
On the other hand, carbon fiber kayaks are the strongest ones. These are the best kayakers who kayak quite often.
Lastly, we have inflatable materials. These are rigid PVC. Hence, it gives you security and support.
- Shape- The Kayak’s shape is another important factor. You must know that shorter kayaks are more comfortable to control, whereas longer kayaks are faster. On the other hand, a slim kayak is fast but unstable. But, a wider one is more stable. Narrow and long kayaks are great for longer distances. They are faster yet hard to maneuver. The wider and short ones are easy to handle and stable. These are great for winding, narrow, and fast-flowing canals and rivers. Therefore, the Kayak’s shape is essential while you are purchasing one. It is on you which type you want to buy, whether you want a slim and short one for easy handling or a long one for faster kayaking.
Hence, this was the comprehensive guide to the best whitewater kayak for beginners. I hope you liked it. While kayaking is thrilling and adventurous, it is dangerous as well. So, take all precautions and get the best Kayak for yourself.