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Vista Description

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Vista Reviews


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Vista Reviews

Read reviews for the Vista by Walden 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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I absolutely love my walden…

Submitted by: paddler445097 on 6/25/2018

I absolutely love my walden vista expedition. It has been a tried and true boat for river trips and lake trips for me since July 1999 - wow that's almost two decades! i love that it is made of recycled plastic which has held up great - sad that i dont know if companies still make such a great recycled product. I do have a bit of a dent in the hull just from abusing it by "sandwiching kayaks" over the years in transport but it still is such a comfy boat and my preference whenever i paddle despite having an option to paddle a newer kayak with more bells and whistles but that is not nearly as comfy as the vista. It has also been great for kayak camping using waterproof bags and also for monitoring water quality as it has some room for equipment. It has a large cockpit so i can stretch my legs and the seat is also very comfortable even with its simplicity - i can easily bird watch and spend 8 hours in this boat without having to stretch or get out....this is not the case with other boats ive paddled. I hope this boat lasts me the next 20 years i would not like to see her go.


My wife and I each both own…

Submitted by: murderhill on 9/14/2016
My wife and I each both own this model kayak (mine's yellow, hers is "grape"). It an attractive couple of boats in the water. For eight years, we have explored the lakes, ponds and rivers of northeastern NY. We are in our late sixties and may be at the end of using this sort of boat. We may move on to a canoe. Nothing we do together is strenuous. We avoid wind and waves so I can't speak about how the wind effects the boat's performance. I thought that the recycled plastic bag idea was intriguing although I now think that it shouldn't be a consideration when buying a kayak.

The price at the time was affordable, It's attractive, good for puttering around calm water lakes and streams, It is light enough (I was told 36 lbs) to lift onto the roof of our Outback (by myself on occasion although it is risky).

its performance is limited, If you are paddling in a group for a seven mile distance which I did recently and there are high end boats in the group, you will have all you can do to keep up. It is slow compared to the better quality boats and it doesn't track very well.
The plastic is prone to softening and becoming misshapen in full sun sitting on a roof rack.
At my age, getting in and out of this boat is a chore and can sometimes be embarrassing. The opening is not wide and it is tough to get your knees in and out of the interior. If you are wide or tall: don't do it. The width is adequate although sometimes the boat rolls and I have gone over and dumped a couple of times for hardly any reason.


I bought my Vista slightly…

Submitted by: cliffelam on 8/26/2015
I bought my Vista slightly used - it'd gotten a few dozen paddles on it then it sat in a garage for a decade or so. I'm 6ft with 13D feet, so keep that in mind.

1> Bullet proof. Seriously, i met someone who lost his on the freeway at 70 and it was fine.
2> Forgiving. Really stable
3> Seat is great for me, I spent 5+ hours in it last weekend with no issue at all
4> Turns well once you get is angled good and hard

1> There simply isn't enough room for my feet down there, so that's bloody uncomfortable
2> Catches the wind as it is pretty high profile
3> Cockpit edge is sharp so literally impossible to brace against it
4> Slooooooow. Slower than my tandem with one paddler
5> Heavy - haven't weighed it, but pick up a lot of yaks and this one is at the "oof" end
6> Does not drain well after washing - always requires a wipe down with a towel ( this is a pet peeve of mine)
I've never tried to roll it, so can't comment on that.


I have had this kayak for…

Submitted by: paddler235563 on 5/27/2014
I have had this kayak for about 4 years now. I still LOVE it. I typically use it in harbors and a little off-shore in New England. It is not a hard-core ocean touring kayak, but it does a great job standing up to wind and surf, especially with the spray skirt on. She tracks fairly straight and is very durable. It is light enough to carry, but still is solid and secure. Has been fun and easy to maneuver in surf tides, and river too. Plus, it feels good knowing that it was made locally and from recycled materials.

I took the Walden Vista out…

Submitted by: bobbiehodges on 8/10/2013
I took the Walden Vista out on a large lake in fairly calm conditions. Was excited about trying a boat made out of recycled plastic. I'm a lean 5'10" female and was surprised at what a tight fit it was for me. Usually I have enough leg room in a 12ft boat, but this model is definitely made for a smaller person. The stability seemed pretty good, but the boat was very frustrating to paddle. Didn't track straight at all, and the least little bit of wind or current catching the boat at an angle spun it around. It did have enough rocker to surf the small waves a little, as long as I headed directly upwind or downwind, but that was about the only fun part. Don't recommend this kayak in comparison to other brands in the same size range.

I have had a Vista for four…

Submitted by: paddler232996 on 1/16/2009
I have had a Vista for four years. It is a great boat for day trips and even playing in the surf. The only CON is the spray skirt (nylon) sometimes comes off in heavy breaking surf because the lip around the cockpit is not pronounced enough. If anyone knows of a neoprene skirt which will fit the Vista let me know...

I spent the summer on Mt.…

Submitted by: paddler232883 on 9/15/2008
I spent the summer on Mt. Desert Island in Maine, and was loaned a Vista by my wonderful landlords. I've paddled three different sizes of kayak, from 10' to 17', and LOVE the Vista. The size and weight are perfect for me, a woman of some years. AND--I slid it into my Honda Civic Hatchback, bungied it to the front window crank, bungied the hatch down, and down the road I went! This one had a rudder added, but I rarely used it unless it was blowing pretty hard. This is the boat for me! The problem is: I can't find one! I'd love a used one, and if anyone out there has one to sell, please contact me.

I have owned my Vista for…

Submitted by: paddler231854 on 9/24/2007
I have owned my Vista for about 6 seasons now. It is the best investment I have ever made toward recreational equipment. The Vista tracks very well, the paddling is almost effortless even with mild winds. I agree with another owner that the Atlantic waters test the boundaries of this kayak. It was more work in the ocean but still very manageable and a lot of fun. The Vista turns very well, is light weight and easy to put on top of my JEEP and I am a woman of fairly short stature (5'2).

Mine is orange. I love the fact that it was fabricated from recycled plastic and also the opening is large enough that I don't feel I would be stuck if I flipped over. 12.5 ft in length and a 24 in. wide cockpit. The storage is great and the adjustable foot pedals allow for the best positioning and leverage while paddling. The Vista also does not tip as easily as other brands when entering and exiting. The seat is a little uncomfortable. I bought a cushion and it works fine. Awesome kayak. I will not be upgrading as this model is perfect for me.


I've now taken out my Walden…

Submitted by: paddler232307 on 9/7/2007
I've now taken out my Walden Vista on two fairly rigorous trips (Manhattan circumnavigations) and I think I now have enough of a feel of the kayak to give it a thorough evaluation. I purchased the boat used this summer as a replacement for a larger (and heavier) Necky Kayook. I found that I wasn't using the larger, more sea worthy kayak enough because of its weight, and overall I haven't been disappointed. Here's my comments on the Walden Vista:

PROS: It is a highly maneuverable boat. It turns on a dime, but is stable enough to handle significant current, wake, and waves for the experienced paddler. The Walden is INCREDIBLY LIGHT - I had no problem picking up the boat after paddling over 20 miles, which really says something because loading a canoe or kayak on the car after a trip is usually a burden for me. The boat is spacious enough (I'm 6' ~185lbs) and I don't feel cramped in it. The seat is moderately comfortable, but I found myself slouching a bit so I will work to find better back support for the boat in the future. The boat is very nimble, and it moves quickly in the water. I found the Vista to be very stable (I haven't rolled yet), but I can definitely tell that as a smaller boat closer to the water it would be easier to roll than the Necky. It handled 3-4' waves in Hell's Gate off the East River quite well. I had read somewhere that the boat has a tendency to let waves roll over the front of the boat - I didn't notice that, although my boat was back heavy with gear, water, and food.

CONS: The Vista tracks OK, but it is beholden to the wind a bit. I found that in brief water/food breaks I'd have to paddle a few strokes to keep her on direction and away from tour boats. Perhaps that only matters on a congested waterway with a significant tidal current, but it was slightly inconvenient. It has a rather small storage compartment/hatch - on long trips I like to take an extra paddle, but it actually doesn't fit in the back so I have to paddle with it in the front between my feet. The interior material is also a bit rough, so I lay a towel under my calves which makes the trip more enjoyable. Comfort is important! Also, there is no convenient place to lock the kayak - in an urban area you DEFINITELY want to lock your kayak on the car, but I actually had to add a U-bolt from West Marine and drill it into the boat. It looks great, but I wish the factory had done that for me. I also had to re-seal the hatch cover and cabin separator with silicon to decrease a small bit of water leak, but that seems to have helped. I think the Walden spray skirt fit isn't great for the boat, so that may also be part of the problem. I didn't take on enough water to cause any flotation problems, but it's frankly not that enjoyable sitting in a puddle of Harlem River water either. Will still have to work on getting this kayak water tight, although again, I think it's a spray skirt issue and there is not a problem of hull integrity.

CONCLUSION: After saying all of that, I LOVE the boat, I'm completely glad I purchased it, it was able to handle a rather long trip in a comparable time as longer kayaks. I give it an 8/10 due to storage limitations (camping equipment would be tricky) and the water problem - which only bothered me because of where I was paddling and not the amount of water that got in. I’m very glad I “traded down” to a smaller boat.


Great Compromise boat. It is…

Submitted by: paddler232057 on 5/31/2007
Great Compromise boat. It is what it is. It's just about the only Rec. Boat I'd consider, next step up is to small tourers (like OT Castine).

As other posters have listed: Extremely light weight (my wife can lift/carry by herself) reasonably fast, excellent secondary/ultimate stability (yes, I've rolled it), footbraces can be adjusted while seated in boat, good price, recyclable (I wanna see one put through a chipper).

Drawbacks: Seat needs to be padded (easy to do yourself), plastic not as rigid or as durable as Old Town's (but it is way lighter) Compared to Old Town Castine/Castaway doesn't track as well also slower, less stowage space (though plenty for daytrips/overnights...pack light), & the soft chine (rounded) hull shape means you can't steer the boat just by rocking your hips. Also the boat can feel a little unsettled in waves, but can be surfed and responds well to a low skimming brace.


In defense of the Vista- I…

Submitted by: paddler231893 on 12/11/2006
In defense of the Vista- I own 2 of these and have for 4 years now. The seats that came with them back then are bad. But, so was every other kayak seat at the time these were made. The padded seats Walden added later are much better. But still not a WS Phase 3. Capacity is low. Both weightwise and Volumewize. Your not going to go much longer than a weekend with the gear you can bring. They tend to weathercock some in a crosswind. The bow submerges in a 2-3 foot chop. OK now that I've proven that I do not see my Waldens through rose colored glasses here's what's right about them.

They are LIGHT...really light. The Hull material is not just a single layer of poly like my WS boats. There is a degree of insulation and sound deadening there. Not to mention they are RIGID. You can stand on them and they won't dish. They are fast. Speed is based on waterline length nt overall and they are all waterline. So a 12'6" kayak with a Greenland style bow will have a waterline length of about 11'6" as an example. The Vista cutwater is in the Aleut style and yields a true 12'6" waterline. This is why she seems so much faster than other 12 footers. She has poor initial stability which makes it possible to lean turn her. But secondary stability is good unless you get cocky and nothing a good hard brace can't fix. And she CAN be rolled. But my biggest compliment is that this IS A LIGHT TOURING KAYAK! It is NOT a REC boat. Enough with the snobbery that anything less than 14' is a rec boat. Using that logic my battleship of a yak 160T Pamlico is not a rec boat. Which is completely untrue. The Vista is a "pocket" Touring Kayak. Easy to fit on the roof rack. Carries enough for a weekend if you pack carefully. And small enough to gunk hole into the out of the way spots that a 17' Fiberglass would'nt dare to go. And everyone who has enough time off a year to go on a week long expedition with a 10 mile open water crossing please raise your hand.........yeah that's what I thought. She's the right boat for 80-90% of us. So let's stop bashing her and accept her for what she is. A fine light tourer.


I own 5 kayaks and here is my opinion: -tracking is very good…

Submitted by: paddler231876 on 11/7/2006
I own 5 kayaks and here is my opinion:

-tracking is very good for a 12.5 foot boat but it is no magic, the boat has no rocker so turns are slow
-the interior of the boat is very abrasive on your feet
-hull strength is very good for a poly boat
-hatch is very cheap on the expedition and always leaks
-bulk head adhesive lets go and heavy loads will knock the bulk head loose
-glide is very good, paddles very easily, but the boat has poor top speed since it starts to generate a wake at higher speeds (what you get from a short hull)
-combing for the skirt is a joke, must be very careful on rolls or skirt will pop
-rear decking loops are molded and stick up too high, hits your elbows funny bone on sweep strokes
-foot braces slip under heavy pressure and nylon web straps stretch when wet

This may sound negative but I would not give any boat a 10 since no boat is flawless. I was a bit disappointed with this boat considering it is classified as a touring boat when I feel its more a rec. boat. With decent combing some thigh braces and a rear hatch that does not leak I would have been very impressed by this boat.


I bought my vista 4 years ago…

Submitted by: paddler231854 on 10/23/2006
I bought my vista 4 years ago and it is without a doubt my best investment besides building our own log home. It's light enough to pack by myself and it's real smooth in the water. Tracking is excellent and it really moves fast without a lot of effort. I've used it on lakes, slow rivers, and the ocean. Not that great in the ocean unless it's a real calm day. It moves well thru the wind if you're in a pond or river. Seating is comfortable and foot pedals are adjustable. The large cockpit gives me a sense of ease and the storage is great. It also has a drain on one end so you can hose out the boat, which you should do anyway when switching locations to prevent the transfer of certain plants. My kayak is bright orange. Definitely a 10 compared to any other I've used.

I am a flatwater paddler and…

Submitted by: paddler231751 on 8/21/2006
I am a flatwater paddler and The Walden Vista is fast and turns on a dime. Perfect for a daytrip of a few hours and could be used for long paddles w/ the optional foam seat pad thing.

It does tend to go a little to the right at times but tracks fairly well overall. Nothing that would diminish from anyone's flatwater experience. Not sure how it would do in the ocean.

Great bang for the buck. Mine is neon green! I absolutely LOVE my Kayak!


I've been paddling my Vista…

Submitted by: paddler230781 on 9/8/2004
I've been paddling my Vista for about 4 months now. A great kayak for the money and for day paddles. I live on the Gulf of Mexico so paddling in the ocean is usually a breeze. Didn't meet my expectations in 1 to 2 foot chop. A small rocker makes the waves crash over the front and fill in the cock pit. Other then that, a terrific kayak for back water, or any calm water condition paddling.

The Vista is my first kayak.…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/27/2004
The Vista is my first kayak. I live on a small Michigan lake and so far this boat has more than fulfilled my expectations. While I have nothing to compare it to, it seems fast, quick, and stable enough. Big plus is its light weight, and it seems very durable for a boat this light. Got a great deal, $389 and after reading other reviews in this forum, will probably not bother to upgrade to the Expedition options.

After trying the Walden…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/7/2004
After trying the Walden Adirondack, I, on a whim, tried a Vista. I normally wouldn't have tried such a long, thin boat. I am a big man, 6'3", 225 lbs, and like big boats with large cockpits. But the Vista was surprising comfortable. Seat needs more padding, maybe a bigger backrest. The footpegs were long enough, which is great. The hull is very strong, stiff and durable. The storage area in the back was great.

The boat is very fast. Very fast. Tracks very well. It actually performs like a 14' boat, which I've heard others say. Because of its thinness, it might be a little tippy for some, and you are right there on the water. But it is no more tippy than a v-hulled boat, such as the Old Town.

The weight on this boat is great. Very light, easy to carry, easy to put on a car or truck. The 11 lb difference from the Adirondack was extremely noticeable.

I like this boat a lot. I will, however, check back after I've used it a lot. I commend Walden on its use of recycled materials. It was a selling point for us.


I've had my Vista for over a…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/5/2004
I've had my Vista for over a year now. It is a great boat for the calm lakes and slow rivers I do most of my paddling on. It is narrow enough to allow for good paddling form, moves through the water easily. Won't generally keep its course when you lift the paddle out of the water, but goes where you want it to, and responds to leans when paddling in mild conditions and calm to middling winds.

I brought it on vacation to the Atlantic coast a few weeks ago. wasn't sure how well it would handle ocean swells and stronger coastal breezes. It performed much better than I expected it to do. Weathercocking was generally not a problem, except for one mile-long paddle out to an island when the winds kicked up to "blow your cap off" levels. THAT was a slog, and keeping it going straight in predictably rough places--like near the mouths of tidal rivers--was work but not an insurmountable challenge. Paddling the Vista on the ocean probably tests its outer bounds--and i would not have hazarded it in rough weather. But I was generally very pleased with its performance.

Other big plusses: it is light and Walden plastic is sturdier than most. My boat gets a lot of use and soem abuse, but I've had no trouble with oil-canning. It is very easy to cartop, and so I don't think twice about loading it up and heading out for an evening paddle.

In sum, this is a great boat for someone looking for fun and exercise on relatively calm water. Longer, heavier boats are probably more than you need, and might prove to be an albatross around your neck.


This poly kayak was our…

Submitted by: paddler230602 on 6/7/2004
This poly kayak was our choice after much thought and research. I worked for EMS and had opportunity to take every kayak they sold for a paddle across a bay. I was tired afterwards, but I sampled 'em all!

Primary concerns as we searched out a kayak were: lightweight, narrow, poly (obviously, lots of rocks in N.E.), and storage space adequate for overniters.

Thus far, this kayak has proven to be all we hoped for. My brother got my canoe (which I had for 26 years) as we upgraded to kayaks. It paddles very easily, tracks well in the winds we have encountered so far. The light weight has proven to be the best of the choices we have made so far.


rented a vista for the day.…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/18/2004
rented a vista for the day. boat handled very nicely. moderate weather cocking when the wind at your back. pretty fast. not all that quick turning. i was renting it thinking about buying it and choose not to only because of the uncomfortable foot room issue. im 5 11 with size 11 feet. i could not seem to find a good position the whole time for my feet. other then that, great boat for the money.

Pretty good boat for the…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/15/2003
Pretty good boat for the money.

Novice paddler, but someone…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/17/2003
Novice paddler, but someone who's spent a lot of time in canoes and rowboats. The Vista will turn on a dime. However, of the 7 kayaks I tried, the Vista dove to the windward side constantly. This was not paddling stroke or a bent boat. The only other yaks that weathervaned this much were a 12' Perception Sundance and the 12' Walden Scout.

You may any of my further comments due to inexperience, but I am trying to be objective. I know everyone loves their kayak. In fact, after reading every review of 12-14 foot kayaks on this website to date twice, I thought the Vista was going to be great--my first choice, in fact. Nice hull design, insulated, light, decent price...then I paddled it.

The Vista did offer some speed, but not so much more than other yaks that it could be said to be that much faster. (What is fast, anyway? Has anyone timed their speed between two points? If you do, please say so, otherwise "fast" is subjective). My biggest complaint was initial stability. This beautiful kayak felt like a surfboard balanced on a bowling ball. No, I did not tip it, take any water, or capsize; didn't even come close. On the other hand, I didn't plan on swimming back to shore and dumping out water on demo day, either, so the boat kept me honest...when I didn't want to be honest. Scary, but I thought the Scout was just as fast, and more stable--and I'm not in the market for a Scout, either. I had no problem with the cockpit design. The seat could have been better as offered, but if you spend that much time with your own kayak, modification to fit you perfectly really should be standard, so that's really not Walden's fault. A salesman did say I would hear less hull noise due to the Vista's design; I really didn't find this true. I do regret this review of the Vista, because I had its sights set high.


I just purchased a used Vista…

Submitted by: paddler229956 on 10/7/2002
I just purchased a used Vista from a local dealer and am very impressed. I have paddled a number of kayaks, both rentals and friends kayaks and have to say this is the best handling boat I have paddled to date. It is light, extremely fast, tracks like an arrow even in choppy water and is very dry. I would highly recommend this boat as a first for anyone looking for the most bang for your buck.

The only dislike I have is in the foot room department. I am 5'10" at 175 lbs. My size 8.5 foot barely fits with my toes touching the underside of the deck. I wouldn't recommend this boat to anyone much larger than myself. Other than that minor drawback, I am very excited to own it and can't wait to get out into bigger waters with it.


I demoed a walden vista exp.…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/26/2002
I demoed a walden vista exp. (rear hatch & bulkhead) at the canadian canoe & kayak festival and loved it! My boat is a sun max flight and although the Vista is the same length it went several times faster. it turns well with a lean and is very light (42 lbs). I reccomend this boat to smaller paddlers who want a boat that can, to a certain extent, grow with them.

I just bought the vista this…

Submitted by: paddler229874 on 8/12/2002
I just bought the vista this summer. I demoed several boat and enjoyed the responsiveness of the Vista. I found the more stable yaks borring and less gracefull to handle. Some were like paddleing a barge! The Vista proved it can handle a lot. On the vacation to NH white mountain region proved it. We took a river trip with 17 other yaks down a class 1 and 2 river out to Ossiepe lake. The vista hadled the river just fine it was easy to turn around the outcropings and logs. but on the lake the winds were high and made very choppy white capped water, too windy for the sail boats to sail! We had to put two tow lines to the back of the vista to tow in my 11 year old daughter and her friend, the wind, current, chop, and seveal hours of paddleing was getting to much for them. (they were in swiftys we rented). with the wind, chop and two boats in tow the vista handled great. it tracked well was still easy to paddle and no water in the cockpit eventhough I didnt have the skirt on. We all made it to shore and laughed not bad for a little yellow yak.

I have been paddling for…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/9/2002
I have been paddling for about three years, mostly in a Wilderness Systems Rascal. This year my son, also in a Rascal, out grew it (size 12 feet) and we started the search for another boat. This weekend we tried a Walden Vista, and have to say we pretty much hated it.

It does track very well for a 12'6' boat (we also took a Necky Zoar Sport, which is a 14 footer, and we had no problem staying together) and handles pretty well, too BUT:

The seat was fairly uncomfortable, is very thin and is mounted without any even slight elevation or lip. Any water in the boat goes right into the seat.

My son is 5'9" with big feet. I 5'8" with size 10's. My feet were barely apart, and his feet and legs started cramping up in the boat.

Also the boat seemed to get pushed around a lot more in the wind than the Necky.

Overall, you get what you pay for: you sacrifice some comfort to get better tracking, but this is still an entry level boat that is not good for people with big feet. The seat was not very comfortable.


I have been paddling a Vista…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 6/10/2002
I have been paddling a Vista for 3 years. I LOVE it for ALL the same reasons everybody else does. This year I bought the new Odyessy. It is also a winner. Handles and tracks great, easy to load and carry, and reasonably priced. I love BOTH my Walden Kayaks. Try the rest, then try won't go back!!!! (P.S. You don't see many used Vistas for sale.)

I have been the very happy…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 6/4/2002
I have been the very happy owner of a VISTA for 5 seasons. After renting kayaks and doing several demos for 2 seasons I was finally ready to buy. The primary & secondary stability, tracking, design, capacity, price and weight were very important to me. In all I was very pleased with this kayak & have used it in open ocean, 2 kayak camping trips & in local rivers. It is light enough to be a fairly easy transport. My kayak is yellow so after 2 seasons I applied a color protector mostly because of all the salt water & sun exposure. I would definitely recommend this kayak for the beginner and the more experienced recreational boater.

I am a retail sporting goods…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/6/2002
I am a retail sporting goods store manager and kayal instructor. I have been paddling for twenty five years both whitewater and flat water. Our store has been selling Walden Kayaks for five years. These boats rock! The Vista has been in our instructional fleet for four years and have been a perenial class favorite of five boat models used. As the other reviewers have said, the Vista is very stable and quick for its length. It is also a very comfortable boat. We did a clinic on Lake Michigan,last summer, with 3' waves and we were all absolutely amazed at how the Vista performed. I have paddled many boats in this category, and for the price no mafacturer comes close to the performance, comfort, stability and value of the Walden Vista! The only model (in this size class) is the new for 2002 Walden 13'5" Odysee! Buy it, paddle it, I guarantee you'll love it!

GREAT KAYAK. Have been…

Submitted by: paddler229441 on 9/4/2001
GREAT KAYAK. Have been shopping for 2 years and have tried many. This is a kay w/ A, a kayak with an attitude. Tracks and has the stability of a 14'. Much more rigid and solid than most kayaks in it's class. Great efficiency hull and stays true, very comfortable. Now is the time to shop / retails for $550, found a end of season deal for $420!! Can't beat it, MUCH better than the $300 entry level boats.

I am an entry level kayaker, have been canoeing forever. This is something you can grow with and have for a long time... Handles well in rivers and open water, great kayak for the money. Very happy, have recommended to all my friends. ENJOY, do yourself a favor and buy.


Before getting into a kayak,…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/1/2001
Before getting into a kayak, first thing, make sure to do your homework, which luckily, is exactly what I did. Finding there were many and many kayak manufactures- which one to get? That's the hard part. Buying the right one- that's the harder part, which brings me to the Vista. After setting my sights on another brand of kayak, the Walden Vista suddenly came into clear view.

I went to a local kayak retailer that advertised a sale. Luckily I talked to a salesman who was also a kayak instructor. After asking him a few questions (drilling him on info I read out of magazines) - he seemed like he knew exactly what he was talking about. He then told me about the Vista. First he told me it was a 12-1/2 ft. kayak that had the speed of a 15 footer. (The longer the kayak - the faster!) I thought ok. Then he told me it was very stable, and very easy to maneuver. He also told me this was a good kayak for the beginner to the expert level. I thought ok! He also told me that this kayak was virtually "unsinkable" even when filled with water. Later I find this to be true with mostly all kayaks.

Last but not least, he told me the Vista is the kayak they use to teach their lessons in. I then tried on the Vista sitting on the floor and it was comfortable. Two other good selling points of this kayak is it is made with the use of recycled polyethylene (fancy word for plastic) - which makes it environment friendly, and also one of the lightest kayaks available! (41lbs.)- and the last but not least thing - It looks good! So with all this, I purchased it and so far... so... EXCELLENT!!!

As far as the speed - it's there! As far as stability - it's got that too! As far as maneuverability - turns on a dime! I'm a beginner at this kayak stuff - and it's perfect for me. I also don't see myself "growing" out of this when I get real good either. And at 41lbs. it's a breeze to carry. And I failed to mention the most appealing thing about the Vista - it's price!

One last footnote, I had a question for the Walden Paddlers e-mail team - They responded quickly and answered my question accurately. Bottom line: The Vista is an excellent product from an excellent company with an excellent team at an excellent $.


The Walden Vista is a real…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/25/2001
The Walden Vista is a real eyecatcher! It has great secondary stability but the primary stability is not as good as the Scout,due to it only being 24" wide.It is very fast and will make a great beginner or intermediate touring kayak. The price can't be beat by any comparable kayak.

The Walden Vista is a fine…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/23/2001
The Walden Vista is a fine kayak. We added the expecition kit ourselves with no problems. The boat is light, solid and tracks beautifully. Our only complaint is the rough intereor finish which makes it tough to paddle barefoot. We have loaded the boat well above 200 lbs on trips and it still handles fine. This is a very well designed boat very adaptable to flat water as well as gently rivers. We love it and would buy another.

My Dear wife bought me a…

Submitted by: paddler229344 on 3/5/2001
My Dear wife bought me a Vista Expedition for Christmas, and I have been dying to try it out. The weather finally broke,and out I went. I wanted a boat that was reasonably fast, tracked well, and easy to transport. She got exactly what I wanted. Although I was concerned about the boats size, and its ability to hold me. I am 6'1"and 230 lbs. ,but it fits me very well. The adjustable foot braces, from inside the cockpit are a nice feature. The only problem I had with the boat, is that our states registration sticker will not stick to the textured deck. I had to silicone it on. This is a very nice plastic boat,very stiff and well constructed. The Vista will hold large and small paddlers alike. It has many nice features for the price. So I think I will keep her, Oh and the wife too!

I LOVE my's light,…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 2/21/2001
I LOVE my's light, easy to carry and easy to load up onto my pickup truck cap. It handles and tracks well. I enjoy paddling it all day...It's a GREAT boat for the price......try'll like it!

Nice little boat. This…

Submitted by: paddler228585 on 5/4/2000
Nice little boat. This versitle boat comes with some unique features that keeps the cost down and the possabilities up. One of the unique features is the uninstalled storage area. Leaving this out allows for more room for storing supplies and gear. This only requires the purchase of water tight bags for your parishables. The boats length and style enable for excellent tracking and a smooth ride even in not so smooth waters. Over all a well rounded kayak for the beginner to intermediate adventure seeker.

If you want a kayak that is…

Submitted by: paddler228464 on 2/26/2000
If you want a kayak that is really light (40 lb) and tracks like a boat 2 feet longer, get a Vista. Had mine out in Michigan rivers, lakes and ponds and couldn't ask for more performance in such a small package. Construction seems to be stout and I got mine without hatches since I found I could get more day gear in by going behind the seat. The seat is great but I bought the aftermarket pad kit to cool things down and offer a little padding. I hardly paddle my longer glass kayak anymore if that tells you anything.If you are going on overnight trips, you have to pack real light but how many paddlers really do?

Great tracking for the boat…

Submitted by: paddler228167 on 7/7/1999
Great tracking for the boat length. An excellant 1st kayak. This is essentially a recreational boat and should not be classified as a light touring kayak. The sprayskirt and coaming do not provide a tight enough fit for eskimo rolls.

This boat handles like a…

Submitted by: paddler227949 on 4/8/1999
This boat handles like a longer kayak. Love the seat and backrest. The footbraces are long enough for my 37" inseam!

Very good kayak. I highly…

Submitted by: paddler228036 on 3/28/1999
Very good kayak. I highly reccomend it. The only problems are the lack of storage space and its speed. This kayak is good for day trips, but not for overnight trips.