Read reviews for the Sealution Pro by Wilderness Systems as submitted by your fellow paddlers.
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I bought my kevlar Sealution,…
I bought my kevlar Sealution, blue over white, in 1996. At my request, it has no hatches, no bulkheads, no decals, and no skeg. When out of the water, it is stored on edge on three bean bag pillows with a pair of nylon straps from the ceiling carrying a little weight at the ends. I keep it washed and waxed. It seems like I've paddled it in almost every bit of water over 7" deep in Central Florida. I go through periods lasting years when I paddle almost every week. This boat has been the source of such enrichment to my life, it is surely one of the few best things that has ever happened to me. The boat performs very well in difficult weather and is downright fast in smooth water. I still find it breathtakingly beautiful. The other night, [I had the dust cover off in preparation for the next day's outing]I happened to walk into the room and was a little startled by the sheer presence of the boat. It's been fifteen years and the love affair is still going strong! Kudos also to my faithful Lightning brand paddle.
This is my first kayak, so my…
This is my first kayak, so my impressions are admittedly narrower than some others. I bought a used fiberglass Sealution from a fellow paddler here on the board.
For my purposes (lazy summer afternoons spent paddling on a placid lake with my wife), it works wonderfully. My boat has a rudder, but I've only flipped it down a couple times, for a few minutes each, just to "try it". I really didn't feel a need for it, so it's now up just about all of the time. Nothing wrong with it, just no need for my situation.
We have gone on paddles of a few hours, and maybe 8-10 miles so far. No complaints about comfort.
As for handling, it certainly does everything that I need, and until I "learn" more, I am completely satisfied.
I bought a plastic Sealution…
I bought a plastic Sealution II last summer and am in it almost constantly. I normally paddle around the island of Montreal or in one of the lakes in the vacinity. I have also taken it to Nova Scotia where I've been out in the open ocean. I have yet to find a wind or water condition that this boat could not handle easily. I never use a rudder (well almost never) and I find it tracks very well even in big seas. It carves well and doesn't break your back to roll despite its size and weight. My only complaint is the placement of the knee pads. The first few dozen times I tried to roll it I kept popping out. Despite the fact that I am stupid enough to transport it upside down on foam racks in the blazing sun it has never lost its shape. It is a great first, all purpose boat that handles flat water, some white water, and ocean very well.
First time out on the poly…
First time out on the poly model this weekend.... I LOVE IT. Hit a local lake offering whitecaps and cut right through them... Coming off of another great boat by Wilderness Systems, their Pungo ... this boat tracks well, turns great for it's length and is a breeze to get going. Good Job WS
Don't be put off by that…
Don't be put off by that rating, I am brutal. The Sealution is the first sea kayak I have ever owned even though I had and have the use of two Aquaterra Chinooks through our club. For a while I had sole use of them. I Own a Capella and NDK Explorer. They are judged
harshly as well.
The Sealution is likely the most maligned boat on the market. It is in fact (In Plastic) a great beginners boat and will carry you farther into intermediate than most people will ever go. On the plus side it tracks well, weather cocking is not bad, initial stability is great, she carves a turn all right but if you put her on edge you can spin her faster that most other kayaks I paddle.
In foul weather she can put a beginner in a very good footing . My wife is very comfortable in this boat and has never even nearly come out. In 60 + KM 40 MPH winds that thing stayed up and carried her to safety when more experienced paddlers went through all forms of trouble. That event is a tribute to Harry Teikens design. (Sorry Harry I am sure I misspelled your name)
Now the down side, it is hard to roll, secondary stability is not great it is slow, the front deck is a little high, it oil cans; even when not abused. It is a little heavy but like the NDK I am not taking it for walks. I would take more weight if it would stop the oil canning. The backrest and the seat are too comfortable. The thigh braces had to be padded a little. The backrest is pulled back out of the way when I am in it.
As boats go this one is fine. I use it exclusively in winter, photographing seals and ice bergs. Granted my Capella is kept at the pool all winter; but the Sealution 2 gives a great photograph platform and you can have a sandwich with out holding onto your paddle. The Kevlar and glass boats will no doubt address almost all of my concerns. The Capella is much more lively but it is tippy and my wife hates it. The Sealution 2 is the cats meow for her. It Is What It Is!
I have paddled a Sealution II…
I have paddled a Sealution II poly through the 1000 Islands on the St Lawrence River for 4 seasons. Before that I rowed competetively for 20 years. The boat was purchased for "workouts" mainly, not racing or touring. Durability and robustness were important considerations given the granite islands and shoals that I slide on and off. The hull is scratched as expected but of no concern; it is poly, tracks fine; I use the rudder, runs well in all weather. My only complaint, it is sluggish running downwind, but maybe that's me.
I bought my fiberglass…
I bought my fiberglass Sealution about four years ago, after test paddling or renting a good number of different boats. I still love it. It's a well-behaved boat with impeccable manners, and no vices. It turns well and tracks well, although I do admit to using the rudder, especially in a current or a cross wind. It's a comfortable ride in choppy water, and it's stable enough for someone who has never been in a kayak before. It's not a kayak that you have to "grow into" but it's not one that you'll soon grow out of either!
My only minor grouse is that the carrying loops are hard on my slightly arthritic fingers.
I have had my Sealution…
I have had my Sealution (poly) for several years now. Great boat. Have taken it everywhere without a worry. Solid performing boat with an equally solid construction. I have owned other boats and have paddled many others. I feel this boat has no equal in the world of poly boats.
I have the poly Sealution and…
I have the poly Sealution and I love it. It outperforms any other plastic boat I have ever tried. I have paddled the Daggers, Perceptions, Necky which make nice boats but I still prefer the poly Sealution over the other Necky poly's. It performs very well from oceans to lakes. As far as plastic is concerned it does not flex as much as most comparable poly models. One of the reasons is it has a keel running down the length of the boat, reinforcing it along the length of the boat. If you are in the market for poly I would get a Sealution or a Current Design.
White over white with black…
White over white with black rigging Wilderness Sealution in Kevlar w/ rudder. I LOVE THIS BOAT!!! I traded in a Dagger Sitka in Kevlar (too big and high volume for day tours) for this one...this boat is responsive and quick, tracks beautifully, is as sexy a boat as you will ever see on the water...you can make this one dance! It surfs beautifully and your ride is dry...the very English style nose stays high and the bigger the waves, the more fun we are having! The cockpit is comfortable and the seat supportive...great tripping boat... (I've taken it to the Boundary Waters for 2 week destination loop trips, Maine Island Trail, and other camping trips and my friends and I (in Sealutions) are the only ones not "bitching 'bout our boats" at the end of the day! We're the ones still smiling! Plus the handling is superb for day trips. I don't experience leaky hatches...my stuff stays dry and they are large enough to accommodate larger drybags. Love the extra room behind the seat for stuffing a jacket & my platypus water bottle. I have never felt safer nor more in tune with a boat than I do with my Sealution!
I paddled a rental plastic…
I paddled a rental plastic Sealution II and was not impressed. It weighs a ton. There is no way one person can get it on a car top without something like hully rollers. The thigh braces are a disgrace -- too small, badly shaped, and badly placed. The foot pegs are plastic p.o.s.'s. You can fit an army in the cockpit, which means most people will need lots of outfitting to make it usable. Finally it weathercocks like crazy so definitely get a rudder or skeg.
Bought a lightly used,…
Bought a lightly used, plastic Sealution II four years ago, and paddled it everywhere from local ponds and rivers to overnights on the Great Lakes and the Maine coast. After all those trips, it shows little wear except for a sag in the plastic (slight concave area) under the cockpit. The rudder, cables, hatches, etc are still as good as new. The boat always feels very stable and seaworthy, and although it tracks very well (I rarely use the rudder except in crosswinds and following seas) it also turns easily, much better than a lot of 16-17 ft boats I've tried. For a 150-lb paddler like me, the plastic version is
no speedster, but I'll bet the composite version improves performance. It's a great design, and the plastic boat would be an ideal choice for taller, stronger people who want a boat that can do it all.
I paddle a Kevlar Sealution,…
I paddle a Kevlar Sealution, and love its predictability and seaworthiness, particularly with a load in heavy weather. I cannot say enough positive things about the Sealution's ability to handle heavy wind and waves. The design limits deck spray remarkably well. The boat is highly maneuverable and fast enough, and the light weight of the composite construction makes it a joy on and off the water. I've noticed a few slight hardware quality problems on Wilderness System boats, but not enough to compromise their overall design quality, safety and fun. The slightly leaky hatches are an annoyance, but common for the hatch design in general.
I intially purchased a…
I intially purchased a Sealution II three years ago. This was my first touring kayak. I paddled in open ocean, bays, lakes and calm rivers. My Sealution II was a 60 lb. traditional touring kayak with two bulk heads and a full sit inside cockpit. I was so captivated by my experiences, I just recently stepped up and replaced the II with a full Kevlar model. Wow!! By dropping 20 pounds off the boat, it handles beautifully...quicker turning and very light on the water. Not to mention getting it on and off the car and carrying it to the water. To save even more weight (albeit a few onces) I had them clear coat the finish versus gel coated color. The result is a spectacular gold piece of artwork...the natural color of Kevlar. It carries a rudder (as I did on my first kayak) but I use it only for strong wind and current conditions. To complement the whole package, I have ordered a carbon fiber paddle. The big consideration to all of this is expense. Kevlar is three times as expensive as Polyethylene! This is a decision that should come when one is committed to kayaking beyond occassional bay paddles. This is a true touring craft that demands challenging excursions. To give you an idea, on my agenda over the next six months is a paddle over to Todos Santos in Baja California, exploration of Monterey Bay and the Elkhorn Slough and an eight day exploration of the islands off of Belize. Now if I could only figure out how to install teflon landing pads at these sites...you know what that first scratch is like!!