Phoenix 160

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Phoenix 160 Description

The Phoenix 160 is a kayak brought to you by Hurricane Kayaks. Read Phoenix 160 reviews or submit your own review to share with the paddling community. Check out a few other kayak recommendations below or explore all kayaks to find the perfect one for you!

Hurricane Kayaks
Phoenix 160 Reviews

Read reviews for the Phoenix 160 by Hurricane Kayaks as submitted by your fellow paddlers. All of the reviews are created and written by paddlers like you, so be sure to submit your own review and be part of the community!

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This is more of a TIP than a…

Submitted by: Manuel_Z on 2/15/2021
This is more of a TIP than a review but I'll give my PROS/CONS at the end. The Hurricane Phoenix 160 is made of TRYLON (ABS PLASTIC) This plastic is very brittle and very fragile. I developed a simple way to fix cracks and splits although I go extra and cover the patch with wire mesh. If you contact Hurricane they will send you a piece or pieces of their TRYLON plastic. Here is my solution for a keel crack. I cut off small pieces of the plastic and put them in a sealed glass jar with ACETONE which breaks it down to a liquid over night (More plastic = Thicker result). I call it (LIQUID PLASTIC) With a small brush, I paint it into the crack and tape it shut and leave it for a couple hours, What I do extra is I use a Weller wood burning kit (The flat round tip) and melt a strip of aluminum window screen 2 inches wide into the plastic over the crack then paint several coats of the liquid plastic over the mesh. Surprisingly, it dries/hardens almost instantly allowing for more coats as needed. I also elevate the opposite end of the kayak and pour LIQUID PLASTIC (More Acetone = thinner solution) inside along the keel for added inside support. For a flat surface crack (ON THE INSIDE) To seal and hold the crack, I use AC Aluminum duct tape (Has a rubbery coating on one side) You have to peel the plastic off the adhesive to use it. Get the outside surface as flat as possible. Do the same wire mesh method and coat as needed try to set the repair horizontally (Flat) to let gravity level out your liquid plastic. NOTE: If you have easy access to the inside of the crack, melt the wire mesh on the inside instead of the outside for a nicer finish. Carefully fill the outside with the LIQUID PLASTIC sanding with very fine sandpaper between coats. make final coat very thin for a shiny finish. (No aluminum tape needed) REVIEW: PROS: The Phoenix 160 is a beautiful kayak and will draw attention! Handles are well placed Light weight for easy portage 2 Recessed Scotty rod holder mounts (Not sure if factory) Foam inserts (In the hull) beneath the seat for added support. Large oval front hatch for hull storage. CONS: The recessed pad eyes because some clips wont hook into the pad eye. The thin EVA foam anti-slip seat pad deteriorates over time The scupper system could be a potential sink hazard if something knocks the hose off on the inside of the hull. Would have to be a hard hit though. The small rear hatch that is hard to open and pretty useless aside from being able to reach in with one arm. Poor quality deck rigging that has deteriorated over time Hurricane has no info that I could find on their website about the Phoenix 160. If you want to see my restoration video and how I repair the crack(s) In case doesn't allow links... search you tube for "Kayak Restoration Hurricane Phoenix 160" Thank you for an awesome and informative website!

I'm 58 and my wife and I have…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/4/2012
I'm 58 and my wife and I have been paddling SOT's for more than a dozen years, ever since we got our Tarpon 160s (the best 16' SOT, period). We do lots of day paddling, but also get in at least one extended 5-10 day paddling trip each year.

Four years ago, I was drawn by the beauty of the Hurricane Phoenix 160. I was able to pick mine up at the Salt Lake Outdoor Retailers Show for a super deal.

What I like: Very dry ride. I can load my 220 pounds and 75 pounds of gear and never see any water come up through the scupper holes. It has cavernous storage in the front hatch and reasonable well storage in the back. Oh, and did I mention it is a very attractive boat? It gets lots of approving looks. The Trylon material is super tough and maintains its glossy finish well. For quickness, it seems to hold its own against my Tarpons; I can paddle this boat for 8 hours on the ocean without tiring me excessively.

What I don't like: Initial stability leaves a bit to be desired. This is a very high ride and sudden movements, river currents, or waves give a feeling of instability. I never felt that in my Tarpons. However, in four years I've only been flipped once. The rudder is almost useless. The boat rides so high that even with my weight and 75 pounds of gear, the rudder only extends 3 or 4 inches into the water.

Would I buy this kayak again? NO! But I'm also not quite willing to part with it, especially since I still have my trusty old Tarpon.


I believe I'm what you would…

Submitted by: paddler234644 on 7/9/2012
I believe I'm what you would call experienced, I've been paddling sea kayaks since I was in my teens and I'm 54 now. I currently own 5 yaks with a focus on fishing and open water/surf.

I purchased the 160 about two years ago. I'd like to second the observations of the poster below; The Phoenix paddles well and is a dry ride, not a speedy yak but decent. I was also pleased by the finish and weight. Coming from an X-Factor to the 160 made it feel like a feather.

Now the bad news.
It's surprisingly easy to turtle. (First time I did it just by reaching into the tank well behind my back for a tackle bag) It's also sits rather high and is made of such slick plastic that deep water entry is a pain and it drifts VERY fast. If you capsize this thing in a decent wind it's going to leave you behind very quickly. This is the first kayak I've ever tied myself to with a leash. I would suggest new owners add deck lines for re-entry and safety.

I really do not understand the need Hurricane had for recessing all the pad eyes and such, many popular seat or equipment clips will not fit easily and the carry handles are pretty much unusable. The hatches are worthless unless you get out of the boat and since there are no bulkheads your gear isn't going to be anywhere near where you put it. It's a great fit for tall people, (I'm 6'3") and would make a great day paddler or exercise yak. I will NOT take this thing offshore. For fishing it's a very poor choice. It's a LOT of work to turn around, esp in a wind. In a nasty cross chop the boat gets VERY tender to handle.

Honestly, if someone would trade me a Tarpon 140 or even a Tarpon 120 it would be gone in a heartbeat, which is a shame, it's a beautiful boat.


Overweight and over-hyped by…

Submitted by: mwcarrera on 11/21/2011
Overweight and over-hyped by reps...mine tips the scale at 79lbs with helium injected into the hull prior to hitting the scales...while I appreciate the accurate review above, it failed to mention the weight as a huge (no pun here) problem for this boat..I still have mine because I cannot give it away, once someone picks it up, the decision becomes NO!

I am 6'4", 210, 56 y/o, 6…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/2/2008
I am 6'4", 210, 56 y/o, 6 years experience, own 4 kayaks and the Phoenix 16 is my first SOT. I got it to fish from, and I can sit with my 36" inseam fully extended with my feet on the pegs. In fact, the peg rack could be extended another 1.5" if necessary, but my feet contact the pegs at the instep, not the ball of my foot, with my heel flat on the deck.

The 16 comes bare, not even a seat pad, but the ergonomics of the buttbucket are such that for an hour and a half, you may not need one nor a backband. I did go for the OK backband and Yakpad gel seat bottom for longer trips and a 230 paddle is plenty even for a boat as wide as this one.

The 16 ships no water across the deck nor up from the scuppers into 2 foot chop and 22 mph winds gusting to 28 and the boat tracks true enough I did not regret ordering it w/o a rudder. I'm a purist, and this boat will track as well as you can paddle. I made 2 correcting strokes in that weather in a 2 klick paddle against, abeam and running with the wind. The 16 is apparently intended to lay a straight wake and it will do that to the extent it took 10, TEN, side strokes to turn it 180.

Its sleekness is deceptive. It is not much faster, if at all, that a poly boat the same length and not nearly as wide, but it glides well. Don't get off it without a tether. There are 2 completely useless hatches. One day screwtype, behind the buttbucket, and one oval snapfit on the foredeck. Both open into the maw of the entire hull. No bulkheads to stop the trip to the center of the boat where the item either hangs in the plumbing, or hooks onto one of the exposed bolt threads to secure itself until you get ashore to fish said item out with a fully extended coathanger.

The boat cannot be carried efficiently by one person. The gunwale straps are not attached at the centerline and the boat tips dangerously astern to seriously ding the pristine finish of the keel, or to pull the carrier off his/her balance. You'll need a friend to carry one end or a cart to go any distance to and from the water.

The Phoenix 16 is a day paddling SOT. It is not easily rigged to fish from, unless you are satisfied with strapping a milk crate astern, nor was it intended to be rigged to fish from. There is no way to get into the hull to secure the assorted attachments you'll need to comfortably fish; rodholders et. al. The boat does ride at anchor well and is easy to cast from, but even as wide as it is, be careful sitting sidesaddle. The initial stability is excellent, but the secondary is nonexistent and once the 16 goes past the tipping point, there is no recovery. This boat can be capsized surprisingly easily for an SOT.

In summary, the Phoenix 16 is a generally well designed beauty with careless afterthoughts throwing eggs on it and a much less attractive but more utilitarian fishing 'yak can be had with a rudder for several hundred dollars less. But, if fishing is not your thing in a SOT and all you want is a suave, slick daytripper guaranteed to steal the show, the 16 may be your boat.

As an after word, the customer service at Hurricane is less than satisfactory. They have yet to answer my emails regarding issues with my order. Be advised.