What a Difference!

Well, yesterday I took the Pelican out into Lake Lanier….  In amongst ski boat, jet skis, fishing boats, house boats and even sail boats.  All of those wakes, and a decent wind, made for very choppy conditions out in the open parts if the lakes. All I can say is WOW! She took 3′ swells like nothing. Some kids on a large jet ski seemed determined to make me capsize. Several times they passed by me within 10 ft, and would cut across in front of me making “s turns” at full throttle….  I rode them out like a roller coaster!

I tried to stick to the coves, and even went about a half mile or so back up Balus Creek. But, yeah, I had to cross open water several times.

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Despite the few jerks (mind you, there were many more considerate boaters that would power down and glide by me), I did about 7 miles in just under 3 hours.

I’m sore, and sunburned today. (yes, I use sunscreen and reapplied it a couple of times, but I missed a few spots.) I’m looking forward to having the 4th off. If I can find a paddling partner, I might head north to Lake Rabun, Lake Burton, or Lake Hartwell.

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My First Real Boat

Well, Saturday morning I stumbled into a deal I couldn’t pass up on a 12ft, sit-on-top kayak.

What did I get?  A Pelican Icon 120 – Bought it new Saturday morning and had it in the water within an hour!

Now, Pelican has a bad reputation.  Over the last few years the boats they’ve put out have been more akin to barges than kayaks.  However, I’ve heard they have undergone some management and design team changes.  The Icon line is supposed to be the first from their new line.  I can tell you, it’s not the slow, hard to control, tipsy boat they have a history of putting out.

Here’s my thoughts after one ride:

  • The boat rode great and stable. I do sit a bit higher than in the inflatable, so it took me a while to get used to it.
  • The tracking was great and I really don’t see that I would ever need to put a rudder on it… but, there is a place to mount one on the stern if you want.
  • The paddle holder is behind you.  Not too far, but it was a little awkward at first.
  • They included quiet a few extra pad eyes for lashing things to the boat.  I could see myself adding a few more.  Mainly for thigh straps and for an anchor trolley.
  • As I’m on the heavier side and close to the max weight limit, the suppers didn’t do as they should.  Instead of helping the boat being self bailing, they tended to bubble up a little.  Looks like I’ll need to plug them until I lose some more weight.
  • There is plenty of storage with a large well in the rear and a watertight hatch in the bow.  The hatch in the bow opens up the entire hull of the boat where you can put your fishing rods and tent poles fully in the boat.
  • Behind the seat is a raised, flat area where my watertight box sat nicely.  However, I could see myself installing a 6″ day hatch/dry bag there.
  • There are grab handles on each side, at the bow and on the stern.

I’m really pleased with it, especially at the price I paid for it.

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CameraZOOM-20130622123800326 (Medium)CameraZOOM-20130622114512977~01 (Medium)I will need a good roof rack.  But, blue on blue looks good!