I live by water and this kayak is perfect. It tracks straight and paddles effortlessly (well, almost effortlessly anyway…) I find the kayak to be super comfortable and does everything I want it to. I would recommend this kayak to anybody.
Holding an edge is effortless and cruising speed seems faster although I can't quantify that for sure. One thing I thought I would not like is the cockpit rim sits very high on the paddler which I thought might be in the way of my paddle stroke (low angle Greenland stick) but it wasn't. What the higher coaming did do was make snapping on a tight spraydeck REAL easy! Rolls were almost automatic although I'm sure those that favor lay backs will gripe about the height of the coaming hitting their back. Not me-I favor a combat c-c.
The Talon curiously didn't have carry toggles which makes for a super clean look but I'm taking the boat back this winter to the builder to have them added. My Talon is a legit 44 lbs and balanced perfectly. It cost me way less than the CD Caribou I was favoring and the company has been really great to work with.
I'd give it a 10 but I think there are a few tweaks that should/could be made like tethered hatches and a better back band. But while others are heading for China to circumvent environmental laws, its pretty cool to have something "Made In Michigan" by a small craft builder.
I paddle mostly on open water so I use the skeg regularly, though I'm not sure it's needed as the boat tracks really well even without it. The thigh braces provide great support and a snug fit.
The finish is great with no visual defects, and definitely turns heads in the water. The boat is far faster than my old plastic boat in the water and clearly more efficient, as long distances have now become short ones.
I would recommend this boat to anyone. I have not been able to find a comparable boat.