The Tamarack 120 fishing kayak by Lifetime is the perfect buy if you’re looking for a shorter kayak that offers better than average tracking, decent storage, a stable, durable design, and a reasonable price. The Tamarack is easy to handle, so it’s a great buy for beginners, however, because of the shorter length, it doesn’t offer the type of speed some anglers will need, especially when it comes to ocean angling.
Our Verdict: The Tamarack kayak is perfect for beginners or seasoned anglers who plan on sticking to slow-moving bodies of water such as large ponds, lakes, or slow-moving rivers. The kayak’s shorter length negatively impacts its ability to slice through the water, but the shorter, wider design helps to improve its stability and tracking. Overall, this is a great buy for any angler in search of a kayak that’s designed to last and access those hard to reach fishing spots that just aren’t possible in a traditional fishing boat.
Keep on reading to learn more about this top-rated inflatable kayak, and find out if it really has what it takes to handle whitewater, ocean angling, navigation through narrow river channels, and more.
Overview and Features
This model may be small, but it can get you where you need to go. The shorter, durable size can easily get you where you need to go, and all without hitting your wallet too hard. But considering the shorter length, this kayak can be a bit limiting, in terms of where you can take it.
As we mentioned, this is a shorter kayak, and often, a shorter design equals a sluggish kayak. While it may not be the fastest, this ten-foot model can still move in the water, but if speed is a priority for you, then you may need to look elsewhere.
User Weight Capacity
Since this is a smaller angling kayak, its max user weight is somewhat limited at two hundred and seventy-five pounds, which can be a major drawback for some anglers. Beginners often fail to consider the weight of their gear. If you weigh around two hundred and sixty-pounds, then you won’t be able to bring along much in terms of fishing gear. If you go over the max weight capacity, this will position you even lower in the water and make an already slow kayak even slower.
The smaller size makes this kayak easier to haul and transport, weighing in at just fifty-two pounds. When deflated, it can easily fold down into a compact package and fit in any trunk. Additionally, the built-in carry handles will also make it much easier to get this kayak in and out of the water.
This is a sit on top kayak, so you can expect to get wet, especially if you’re paddling on a fast moving river. It’s also equipped with scupper holes, which will let water in and out of the vessel. In fast-moving water, the scupper holes will allow water that you’ve taken on to drain. Since you can expect to get wet, this model is best suited for warm weather conditions. However, you can continue to use the kayak, even in colder weather, by purchasing a wetsuit.
Most models of inflatable kayaks come with a removable skeg. However, in this price range, you’ll rarely come across a built-in skeg. Until now. This built-in skeg makes it easier to navigate the kayak down tight river channels and helps to improve the kayak’s durability, making it a great choice for beginners.
Along the center, the hull features deep channels, complete with a molded skeg located at the rear. The hull’s design is meant to maximize the kayak’s stability in rougher waters, allowing it to track straight and true. The multi-chine hull offers both primary and secondary stability. Since the kayak is so stable, anglers can easily stand up when casting.
For a smaller kayak, it comes loaded with quite a bit of storage space. You’ll find large storage areas located at the stern and bow, in addition to a bungee system that allows you to secure a wide range of fishing gear. The large spot located behind the single seat can be used for a cooler or crate.
- Easy to navigate
- Lightweight design
- Low price
At ten feet in length, this model is a good choice for the angler in search of a compact kayak that’s easy to haul, stable, and affordable. In terms of where you can take it, we recommend sticking with calm bodies of water such as a slow-moving river, large pond, or lake. However, the scupper holes also make it suitable for fast moving rivers and ocean angling, just don’t expect much in terms of speed.
Is it Easy to Cast in this Kayak?
If you’re sitting, then you may need to master the one hand casting technique. However, the kayak’s reputation for stability will allow you to stand up to cast, without causing the kayak to rock or tip. If you’d like to learn how to fish in a kayak like a pro, click here to read our article on kayak fishing tips.
I Need a Kayak with a Higher Weight Capacity, what Do You Recommend?
If you’re looking for a tandem fishing kayak, the Driftsun Voyager 2 Person Tandem Inflatable Kayak is a great option. It comes loaded with some great features and has a reputation for being highly maneuverable. It’s a little on the pricey side, but the durable design and ergonomic paddles and seats will make it well worth the higher price tag.
The Tamarack Angler 100 by Lifetime is stable, durable, affordable, and beginner-friendly. If you’re looking for a fast model, then it may not be the best fishing kayak, however, the increased stability and tracking capabilities are a fair tradeoff. We gave this model a rating of four and a half stars out of five.