The Best Inflatable Kayak for Fishing

When choosing an inflatable kayak, it is necessary to decide in advance whether you are looking for a kayak for solo use or tandem use. Solo kayaks are designed with the capacity for only one person, whereas tandem kayaks allow you to accommodate an extra person or pet. Some inflatable kayaks can carry up to three people. With a convertible design that is perfect for fishing, enthusiasts can appreciate the extra space when solo fishing.

Inflatable Kayaks can be constructed from a wide range of materials. These include Hypalon, PVC, and Nitrylon. Nitrylon is the current material in use. It is a type of laminated rubber designed for more durability, and with higher resistance to punctures.

There are advantages and disadvantages to each of these materials. Below is a detailed comparison:

PVC (polyvinyl chloride)

PROS:

  • Easy to patch up.
  • PVC costs less than other kayaking materials, such as Nitrylon and Hypalon.
  • Quite resistant to the degradation from fuel, water, and chemicals.
  • Good option if your kayak will be frequently folded and packed away.
  • Lightweight and easily transportable.

CONS:

  • UV rays can degrade a PVC kayak. It is advisable to use UV protectant spray.

Hypalon

Hypalon is a synthetic rubber composite that has been patented/ trademarked. Its structure is made up of chlorinated and sulfonated polyethylene.

PROS:

  • The U.S military and Coast Guard use Hypalon coated boats.
  • It is known for its resistance to ultraviolet light (UV), chemicals as well as extreme temperatures.
  • Known to be a very stable material. It can be folded without the worry of permanent structural deformation.
  • A good choice if you intend to keep your kayak inflated most of the time  and use it frequently.
  • The fabric is easily repairable
  • The fabric flexes when exposed to heat, shock, or impact. It can withstand temperatures in the range of -65°F to 275°F.
  • Very durable in many boats, lasting many decades.
  • Resistant to fungus and mildew.

CONS:

  • Relatively expensive as compared to a lot of other materials.
  • Hypalon needs to be glued instead of welded.

Nitrylon

The debate around the perfect material when it comes to inflatable kayaks is not a new one. At the end of the day, it comes down to personal preference, as there are many durable inflatable kayaks in all three materials.

Hypalon and Nitrylon might seem like the best options when analyzing the pros and cons, but they are much more expensive.

The quality of Hypalon and Nitrylon kayaks can vary significantly, so it’s worth noting that just because it costs more does not mean that it will make a better kayak.

New technologies have allowed for the manufacture of PVC that is more rugged and reliable. Much of the issues people would face 20 or 30 years ago when using PVC inflatable boats are no longer a problem.

PROS:

  • Lower cost than other materials used on kayaks
  • Very resistant to punctures and abrasions.
  • Patching up a Nitrylon kayak is easier than PVC.
  • Stronger than PVC
  • Designed for cold conditions

CONS:

  • Generally heavier than most kayaking materials

Below are Our Favorite Inflatable Kayaks:

1. Advanced Elements Advanced Frame Convertible

Advanced Elements Advanced Frame Convertible has a very functional design. It is adjustable, and therefore it can be paddled solo or as a tandem. It has three different seating positions. The seats are also designed with mesh pockets as well as d-rings for stable storage.

Even though it is inflatable, it has a hard shell making it puncture-resistant. It sits relatively low in the water, which makes it very easy to paddle and maneuver. The only downside of this feature is that it makes it only useful in calm waters.

2. Sea Eagle SE370 Inflatable Kayak

The Sea Eagle has an impressive capacity, designed to support up to 650 lbs, or 2 people. Packed with amazing features, it comes with 2 paddles and 2 inflatable/ moveable seats. It also comes with a foot pump and a carry bag with a shoulder strap, which makes it incredibly versatile.

The Sea Eagle SE370 is easy to set up, inflate, and is made from durable materials, making it resistant to damage.

3. Sevylor Quikpak K5 Inflatable Kayak

The Sevylor Quikpak K5 is easy to set up and transport. In fact, it can be inflated in less than 5 minutes. One of the coolest features of this kayak is that it can be effortlessly converted into a backpack to be carried around comfortably.

It has an airtight system that is guaranteed not to leak. This kayak also has multiple air chambers, which means that it will stay inflated even if one of them is punctured. They also have spray covers that block splashes, keeping you dry. It comes with a bonus pump as well as a paddle.

4. Intex Challenger K2 Inflatable Kayak

The Intex Challenger K2 is a compact kayak, with a weight limit of 350 lbs. It offers ample space and can accommodate two people. The Challenger K2 comes with two inflatable seats and offers excellent comfort for smooth paddling through lakes and rivers.

An aluminum paddle and air paddle come with the kayak, as well as a repair patch kit. It has a built-in cargo compartment for storing essential items. The kayak is easy to set up and disassemble. The only real downside is that it is hard to clean since it has no drain plug.

5. Sevylor Tahiti Inflatable Kayak

The Sevylor Tahiti is a classic kayak that has stood the test of time. It is one of the oldest inflatable kayaks on the market. The Tahiti is suitable for both lake and river use and is very affordable compared to many of the other inflatable kayaks. It is made of 26-gauge PVC, making it very durable and safe in the event of a collision with sharp objects.

The Tahiti can hold up to 400 lbs and accommodate two adults. Additionally, the Tahiti will stay afloat if punctured since it has multiple air chambers. It also has a double lock valve that helps in avoiding air loss. Weighing only 25 pounds, it is easy to carry, easily portable kayak with comfortable seats that have back support, making this kayak a classic.

6. Sevylor Coleman Colorado Inflatable Kayak

The Sevylor Coleman Colorado was specifically designed for fishing as well as recreation. It is primarily made from PVC. It is robust and durable, hence easily able to handle punctures caused by fishing hooks. The kayak has multiple air chambers; thus, if one of them does get damaged, it will still stay afloat. The Airtight System is guaranteed not to leak. It has built-in storage compartments to store essential items conveniently.

The kayak has trolling motor fittings as well as paddle holders. It can comfortably seat two people, making this kayak an excellent option for fishing enthusiasts.

7. Advanced Elements Straitedge Angler

Measuring in at 9 feet and 8 inches, with a width of 35 inches, the Advanced Elements Straitedge Angler is the perfect companion for all of your fishing needs. The wide beams offer greater stability and support. The seat has a high back, as well as inflatable lumbar support allowing for comfortable, long fishing days.

It also has two-rod holders. It is very portable, weighing only 41 pounds with the capacity to support up to 300 pounds.  Another feature worth noting is that it is conveniently protected by a one-year manufacturer warranty.

8. Sevylor Big Basin Inflatable Kayak

This one is a beauty and of high quality. It can accommodate three people at a time. With three seats and the ability to support up to 490 lbs, this is the ultimate fishing companion. The bottom is lined with tarpaulin making it very durable. Equipped with multiple air chambers, the Big Basin will stay afloat if one of the chambers is punctured.

The seats are adjustable to fit your needs perfectly. It comes with spray covers to help keep you dry in the event of splashes. It is easy to inflate and deflate as it comes with double-threaded valves as well as a pressure gauge.

9. Advanced Elements FireFly

The FireFly is an extremely lightweight kayak weighing only 16 pounds. It is ideal for flat waters. It has built-in rigid panels which define the bow and stern, to improve tracking. It has an outside cover to improve its durability. A high flow spring value, as well as “Twistlok”, allows for a quick set up. It is 7 feet and 11 inches in length, with a generous width of 35 inches, making it easier to get into. It comes with a carrying duffel bag and a repair kit.

10. Driftsun Voyager 2 Person Inflatable Kayak

The Voyager is 10 feet in length and 35 inches in width, with the ability to accommodate two people. It inflates in less than 5 minutes, which is highly convenient. It comes with two paddles, a hand pump, a repair kit, and a travel bag. When deflated, its dimensions are 26”(L) x 16”(W) x 8”(H) and weighing only 27 pounds, thus making it easy to carry around in the carry-bag, which is also included. It is made from heavy-duty PVC, and its tarpaulin bottom provides resistance from punctures.

The Double Threaded Boston valves ensure that it doesn’t leak. It is coated with a tough 840D coated nylon oxford fabric top, which is tear & rip-resistant. Suitable for calm and choppy waters, the Voyager is a strong contender when seeking out the right kayak for long fishing trips. It provides high levels of comfort, thanks to its high-quality EVA padded seats.

11. Driftsun Rover 220 Inflatable Tandem

The Driftsun Rover 220 Inflatable Tandem is a high-performance and great value model. Durable and light, weighing just 28 lbs, the Rover 220 is very portable. It fully inflates in less than 10 minutes. It is made from 1000D reinforced layered PVC side tubes and a heavy-duty PVC tarpaulin bottom that provides long-lasting protection from punctures. The Rover 220 is loaded with handy features for the keen adventurer, with a front action camera mount.

It comes with two adjustable aluminum paddles, two adjustable EVA padded seats that have high back support, rear tracking fin, repair kit, hand pump, and a handy travel pump. It is 12.5 feet in length with a generous width of 38 inches, making it stable and easy to enter and exit. It can easily support two adults with a capacity of 600 lbs.

12. Driftsun Rover 120 Inflatable Whitewater Kayak

The Driftsun Rover 120 is a handy one-man kayak. The Rover 120 is eight and a half feet in length, jammed packed, full of features, and weighing only 22 lbs. Inflating is less than 10 minutes and suitable for up to Class III and IV rapids, the Rover 120 is ready to explore almost any lake or river.

Designed with 1000D reinforced layered PVC side tubes and a heavy-duty PVC tarpaulin bottom, the Rover 120 is built tough to last. The PVC tarpaulin bottom provides durable protection from punctures. It even has a mount for front action cameras. The kayak comes with a two-piece aluminum paddle, a double-action hand pump, rear tracking fin, repair kit, and a handy travel bag. Colored in aqua with a grey rear, the Rover 220 also looks impressive.

13. Elkton Outdoors Comorant 2 Person Kayak

The Comorant is a high value kayak. It is 10 feet in length, has a width of 35 inches, and supports up to 450lb.

Made from durable materials, the Elkton is constructed with 18 gauge rip resistant 1000D PVC making it resistanThe Comorant is a high-quality kayak. It is 10 feet in length, has a width of 35 inches, and supports up to 450 lbs.

Made from durable materials, the Elkton is constructed with 18 gauge rip resistant 1000D PVC making it resistant to hooks and tears.

It is designed for long-term use and is very easy to repair & adjust. There are three separate removable air chambers, simplifying the repairing process.

Within the package, you will receive 2 adjustable seats, a paddle, a double-action pump, 2 vertical rod holders, 4 trolling rod holders, and a neat carry bag.

The Elkton not only looks great, but is also comfortable and spacious, and an excellent option for long days in the lake.
t to hooks and tears.

14. Sea Eagle 380x Inflatable Kayak with Pro Package

Measuring 12 and a half feet in length and 38 inches in width, the 380x is a compact unit. It can hold a maximum of 750 lbs, yet it only weighs 38 lbs. The 380x can inflate in approximately 8 minutes and is suitable in up to Class IV conditions. Even though it is inflatable, the floors are rigid enough to allow for standing inside. It is made from reinforced material designed to withstand high pressure. The material is very effective at preventing punctures in the event of potentially abrasive interactions. It has been tested and proven to withstand volatile situations, including being “pounded mercilessly with the claw of a claw hammer, with no effect. Stabbing it with a screwdriver also shows only a negligible impact”.

Unlike conventional “dry-only” kayaks that have no drains, or the “wet-only kayaks” that have permanently open drains, the 380x features four large, easily convertible drains for both conditions. If the drains are open, the kayak is able to bail itself – this makes it suitable for the turbulence of the oceans.

The 380x comes with two high back seats, two 8’ AB40 paddles, two kayak stow bags, a carry bag, an A41 foot pump, a repair kit, and a slide in swept-back skeg. It is designed for durability and also comes with a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty. Their customer service teams have a reputation for being prompt and responsive in case of any problems with the kayak.

See also: ​15 Best Fishing Kayaks for 2019​​​