Tsunami 145

14' 6"
Width (in)
Weight (lb)

Tsunami 145 Description

Ample cockpit size and length without loss of performance make this the choice for larger paddlers desiring extra gear storage capacity.

Tsunami 145 Specs and Features

  • Structure: Rigid / Hard Shell
  • Cockpit Type: Sit Inside
  • Seating Configuration: Solo
  • Ideal Paddler Size: Average Adult, Larger Adult
  • Skill Level: Beginner, Intermediate
  • Ideal Paddler Size: Average Adult, Larger Adult
  • Skill Level: Beginner, Intermediate

Where to Buy the Tsunami 145

Wilderness Systems
Tsunami 145 Reviews

Read reviews for the Tsunami 145 by Wilderness Systems 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 an amazing kayak! It…

Submitted by: Vagabond44 on 12/27/2023

This is an amazing kayak! It is very stable, comfortable, lots of leg room in the cockpit and great seat! The most incredible thing about this kayak is is it's speed!I just finished a 112 mile sojourn and this kayak kept with the front ,with the fast 17 feet boats!I got several compliments on this beast strongly recommend it to everyone!!!


My favorite kayak out if all…

Submitted by: AEMPowell on 12/20/2022

My favorite kayak out if all my boats! The 145 can go anywhere, long or short paddle! It tracks well and can survive any condition such as concrete landings, logs or oysters! I highly recommend this boat for all level of paddlers but especially a beginner needing a stable boat!


This 59 year old has had her…

Submitted by: LisaTudor on 5/26/2021

This 59 year old has had her 2006 Tsunami for 15 years, paddling in lakes and in the mudflats, oyster beds and open water of the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of rural Florida. It is outfitted with a rudder. It has taken a beating over and over, easily staying upright in choppy Gulf waters, boat wakes, storms, low water with my butt dragging it down over sharp shells, outracing alligators (once, for real...he was just curious, I don't think I could have really outraced him if he was serious), playing with dolphins, whoop! The keel allows my light 5'4" frame to almost keep up with my partner in long straight runs especially in windy conditions where his keel-less boat flops all over the place. It's a great straight tracking boat, very comfortable seat. It's typical that I go out for 4-6 hours at a stretch and I rarely tire in it. Now that I'm a little older, the narrow cockpit is a bit more challenging to get in and out of. The only 2 times I've tipped have been getting out at shore. Sacrifice the beer, folks... you're going to lose it anyway! :)


This yak has been the answer…

Submitted by: paddler458070 on 7/26/2020
This yak has been the answer to my prayers. I got a very late start into the world of kayaks. As a senior, thinking I needed an ultra light weight yak I purchased a fairly high level expensive first yak. It was like trying to paddle a cork in even the most moderate breeze. Took a Tsunami for a trial and never looked back, bought 2 (a 125 for the wife). This thing tracks like its on rails. It is rudder ready, but I have yet to need one. Its fast, maneuverable, has tons of storage (especially like the on deck storage and bottle holder) and is only 10 pounds heavier than my prior "cork".

This is my 3rd kayak. I…

Submitted by: paddler520639 on 7/22/2020
This is my 3rd kayak. I started out with a 10' L.L.Bean Manatee back in 2008. This a great kayak for beginners. The next upgrade was a few years after was to a Wilderness System Pungo 120 that I love and paddled for more than 10 years and still take it out once in a while. After loving the Pungo, i wanted to start exploring bigger bodies of water and the sea so 2 years ago, I upgraded to a Wilderness System Tsunami 145. This is my baby. It handles very well in the and rough waters. I live in NH but it does not stop me from exploring. We start paddling in March right through December depending when the lakes freezes. When you have the right Kayak and gear, the possibilities are endless! I recommend all "Wilderness System" kayaks! Their fleet is Exceptional!

A beautiful and comfortable…

Submitted by: paddler827792 on 7/19/2020
A beautiful and comfortable barge. This thing will take you anywhere - and it's extremely stable. I love having a kayak that I can trust. The hatch covers are a bit rubbish (particularly the large oval one in the rear) but keep splash out, I haven't tested for watertight abilities in a roll. The only thing I don't like is that the cockpit doesn't drain when you turn it over - there is no way to get that last bit of water out, and thus there is no way to wash it out properly to get a good week's worth of seaweed, sand and gunk out after a voyage.

I got this boat used for…

Submitted by: Kayuke on 7/10/2020
I got this boat used for $400. For that price it's a steal. Its hull speed is about 4ish mph. It's very stable. I used a sealskin spray skirt with it and learned to roll it in my local community pool. It's been all over the San Juan Islands, 25 miles covered in one day. Plenty of space to hold a weeks worth of camping. Rudder and foot pedals work well, but I only use them in waves and wind. I did have to repair the seal on the bulkheads and they're still not watertight. However for moderate conditions, it's been a great boat.

Love this kayak! I just…

Submitted by: paddler502142 on 7/1/2020
Love this kayak! I just upgraded from a Pungo 120 to the Tsunami 145. It has the same comfortable seat as the Pungo. Plenty of legroom and foot rests that are easily adjustable. This kayak cuts through the wakes and waves like a knife. I got the Eclipse color which is really awesome. I highly recommend this boat if you're upgrading to a touring kayak.

The Wilderness Systems…

Submitted by: paddler772286 on 5/6/2020
The Wilderness Systems Tsunami has been a great all-around sit inside kayak. It’s been on the Atlantic in Maine, on Lake Superior in Michigan and many lakes and rivers in between. Reliable, durable, comfortable, efficient and flexible usage makes it a great boat.

Fairly recent purchase of a…

Submitted by: PDK on 9/4/2019

Fairly recent purchase of a 2019 model. Tracks great, easy to paddle, not to heavy. The seat is great. Lots of adjustability. Wish it had a day hatch like my wife's Tsunami 140. Foot braces are easy to adjust. I have not had it out in heavy weather or rough water yet. No problems in quartering wind.


The Tsunami 145 is a great…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/3/2019

The Tsunami 145 is a great all-around touring kayak with good gear stowage, straight tracking, and comfortable seating. It's great for a 2-4 day trip on lakes or ocean. The rudder is very helpful for windy conditions. The weight is average but at about 50 pounds it's still a chore to lift above the head onto an SUV. My only complaint is the very low cockpit opening at the rear. Even small boat wake or waves can spill over into the boat, necessitating a sprayskirt even on more casual paddles.


I absolutely love this…

Submitted by: paddler541869 on 8/12/2019

I absolutely love this kayak! I’ve had this kayak for three years now and couldn’t be happier. I’m a 6 ft. 2 in. male and at the time I was looking for something to get into kayaking with that would allowing me to do some weekend trips. When I purchased the kayak I was closing in on 250 lbs so the Tsunami 145 was one of the few boats that offered enough capacity for me and camping gear. I just so happened to stumble upon this boat on kijiji and it was 3 years old at the time and looked like new. I snatched it up right away!

The seat is extremely comfortable and the boat tracks well. Although it is relatively wide when compared to nice sea kayaks, it is still very fast and it’s dual bulkheads ensure it’s buoyancy. I have had this out on Lake Ontario multiple times with big waves and it will float right over them and surfs well. When it’s windy sometimes I wish I had the rudder, but I haven’t put one on as most of the time it’s not an issue for me. The kayak can be fitted with a rudder however. The cockpit is large enough for someone of my size to easily get in, however not so large that you feel as though you have no control over the boat. With the thigh hooks and the adjustable feet posts you have plenty of control. You don’t have to be big guy to fit in this boat though, I have shared this kayak with people between 5 ft. and 6 ft. and nobody has had an issue with it being too large.


I'm relatively new to…

Submitted by: paddler508927 on 7/15/2019

I'm relatively new to kayaking, but my Tsunami has been a great boat. It is moderately heavy at 56 pounds, but I've been able to get it on my SUV by sliding it up on the roof from the rear without any trouble. Once on the water it has been a delight. It is very comfortable to sit in, and it seems extremely stable on the water. I'm learning to edge the boat to increase my control, and it feels very stable on edge.


The Wilderness Systems…

Submitted by: JeremyTravers on 7/8/2019

The Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 is a great all around kayak. I've used it on rivers, lakes, bay's and canals. It tracks very well and is quite maneuverable in tight spots. I do not have a rudder on mine and have had no issues with out it. It paddles quite fast. The boat is easy to lift. It also has plenty of storage and sits well in the water when loaded. The seat is quite comfortable and give the paddler plenty of support on long days on the water. This boat is a great all around kayak for the paddler that explores different types of water.


Beginner, here. In reading…

Submitted by: paddler521768 on 6/27/2019

Beginner, here. In reading kayak reviews, I got caught up in the idea of a kayak that was not only a good start but also had chest thumping performance potential to satisfy intermediates. And I tried those kayaks first. The Dagger Stratos 12.5L didn't have enough leg room (6'2" 225 lbs.). The 14.5L was a much better overall fit except the thigh braces would have to be moved and were already at the end of their adjustment range. The Stratos maneuvered nicely. Not so great primary stability and didn't track very well without the skeg. With the skeg, I had to paddle hard to keep up with my wife putt-putting in a Tsunami 145. So like Goldilocks, I tried the Tsunami 145 and... It was just right. Once the pedals were adjusted, the seat and pads were perfect. This made the dynamics of paddling and energy transfer intuitive. Great primary stability meant I could relax, crane around, sightsee without any wobbles. The kayak tracks straight. The optional rudder is unnecessary, in my opinion. This kayak makes good speed forward against tide and into headwind. Handy to paddle out of approaching weather in a hurry. Couple caveats... A barge might turn quicker. If a tall seat back is preferred, the 145 will deliver, but make sure to get a high back pfd to go along with it. Finally, I barked my shin on the lip of the water bottle holder. Hopefully, I will only do that once... Wife and I both got the Tsunami 145. These kayaks have been used in rivers, wetlands, wildlife preserves, ocean bays. Very satisfying.


I love paddling this boat.…

Submitted by: paddler444055 on 6/6/2019

I love paddling this boat. This is my second boat. My first boat is 11 feet and is a little sluggish in open water. This boat handles nicely in open water in waves up to 2 feet. I am an intermediate paddler with 3 plus years of experience and this boat is very stable for my experience level. Highly recommend for a beginner or intermediate paddler


This thing is a tank. It can…

Submitted by: paddler464368 on 9/11/2018

This thing is a tank. It can hold everything you need + more. On smooth water its actually quite quick. I've noticed many people on here saying this is more suited for a larger person. I'm a 168cm (5'7) & 150 lbs guy and this thing fits very well. Had to move the seat up to reach the rudder pedals properly, but once you do this thing is super easy to control. I regularly take friends gear in my boat, because I have the capacity/weight rating. Buy one.


Awesome maiden voyage with…

Submitted by: BONES on 9/11/2018

Awesome maiden voyage with my brand new 2018 Wilderness System Tsunami 145 Red. The boat, well it's awesome . Chines while paddling and leaning .... effortless. Rock steady, Phase 3 tour seat phenomenal , adjustable on the fly. Got up to 4.7 mph, great speed with an easy pace. Starts and stops easily. Very controllable kayak. 2018 Tsunami 145, awesome! BONES.


Drove 4 hours to kayak demo…

Submitted by: paddler458070 on 7/31/2018

Drove 4 hours to kayak demo in NC. Paddled several as I am transitioning from a recreational yak to a touring yak. My expensive recreational yak tracks like a cork in all but the calmest conditions. I was initially concerned about giving up some stability. All my concerns we answered by the 145. I am a bigger guy (6'1'',225) and this yak fit perfectly. Easy in and out, terrific seat, with multiple adjustments. Very stable and it tracked like it was on rails, even in the moderate wind at the time. Do not see the need for a rudder for me. Storage is cavernous. Deck storage bags are a neat feature as is the under deck water bottle holder. After demo, got out drove to store and bought one. Smart move.


My wife and I each bought a…

Submitted by: paddler444730 on 6/27/2018

My wife and I each bought a version of the Tsunami. She's a shorter person, so picked up the 135. I float around in the 145. We are both super happy with the value. We paid about $1,600 a piece at the Toronto outdoor show. They stood up well to choppy water on the St Lawrence for a week, cut through smooth and rolling water crossing Lake Erie and glide comfortably along the various waterways we traverse in Ontario. Ample storage for weekend trips (and probably longer, but we haven't tested that out yet). Every review we read prior to buying said they are versatile and reliable, and we couldn't agree more. Great purchase and would recommend to paddlers of any experience level.


After getting started…

Submitted by: paddler444114 on 6/19/2018

After getting started kayaking in an Sundolphin 12' Aruba ( and falling in love with the sport); I started researching and trying out different makes of touring kayaks. My wife and I love to go camping with our 'yaks', and so gear storage and paddling characteristics while loaded were important to me. In the end; we ended up going with the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 w/ rudder for me and a 14' for her. I find the boat effortless to paddle and very stable in swells and cross winds. Comfortable to paddle for long hauls between campsites due to the adjustable seat positions. Accessibility to stored gear is good (front hatch could be a little bigger but still good). The price range of these boats is also very affordable and doesn't break the bank! All in all; a great kayak and can't wait for the adventures to come!!


Overall I think it's a…

Submitted by: dsergison on 6/18/2018

Overall I think it's a wonderful plastic yak for it's increased cockpit front height such that it fits my inflexible knees, 6'2" 220 lbs and size 13 shoes.

My only complaints are about the seat back being slightly too tall if you roll because you can't lean back far enough to make the roll easy. Also when climbing in over the back it flips forward and blocks your entrance.


Very comfortable, stable…

Submitted by: paddler444055 on 6/18/2018

Very comfortable, stable boat for novice paddler


We use the crap out of our…

Submitted by: Vanimal on 4/12/2018

We use the crap out of our Tsunami 145s and let me tell you, it's a great boat! I'm 6'-2" tall at 220 lbs and I fit great within it's cockpit. I believe it's designed for larger paddlers. We use it on a lot of day trips and have camped out of it for as long as 5 days and it holds all the gear we can carry. One recent trip, I must have had almost 70 lbs of gear and was able to maintain 6 MPH for a miles according to my GPS. It's not the fastest boat out there but can keep up a good clip once you get it going. Primary and secondary stability is good. My wife's boat has almost been flipped over just one time and it was a huge gust of wind that hit us unexpectedly. The optional rudder does help out a lot and I can't imagine having a yak without one. It is on the heavy side but it's also very durable. We run ours aground all the time on sand, dirt, gravel, rocks and have taken any abuse we can throw at it. I know we should treat it with a little more respect but it doesn't complain. Overall, he's a wonderful boat that has taken me to some of the nicest places around Colorado.


I have been paddling a…

Submitted by: JeremyTravers on 2/15/2018

I have been paddling a Wilderness Systems Pamlico 145T for the last 6 years and wanted to get a solo boat. I had been eyeing up the Wilderness Systems Tsunami for several years and was able to take one out for a test drive last summer...I was sold. I take a lot of photographs and video while paddling and was looking for a stable boat. The Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 was perfect. It has great stability and storage capacity for my gear. It is very stable and tracks well. I have been out in several conditions on lakes, rivers, bays and canals and enjoyed every minute paddling the Tsunami. If you are looking for a fun stable boat the Tsunami is a great choice.


I have owned all types of…

Submitted by: Monkey_N_Around on 2/12/2018

I have owned all types of kayaks from Sun Dolphins from Wal Mart, to Wilderness Systems to Old Town. I do a lot of kayak camping and I would say the Tsunami 145 is probably one of the best for camping out of. I purchased one use and it had a rudder already in place which if you ever use a rudder you will not want to go back. Check out my review of it on YouTube for more specifics.



Love this kayak. It tracks…

Submitted by: CJC on 10/26/2016
Love this kayak. It tracks very well in the wind and wave, even without the rudder. It is very stable and we have only managed to tip it once in big waves near the shore. We live on the Potomac River and have made the three-mile crossing many times to go to St Clements Island or to hug the beach to search for fossils. We have also used it on the Rappahannock River and a 15-mile paddle both with and against the current is a good paddle for us and not anywhere near as tiring as it would be in our little 10.5 foot kayaks. We also have a 100 acre lake behind our house and it is perfectly at home on the lake as well.

I am 68 years old, 190 pounds, and 5'11" tall and it is still fairly easy for me to get into and out of and sit comfortably. My wife is smaller and has the 140. I don't have enough knee room in the 140 but the 145 is perfect as it is a bit higher over the knees. Since we got it last year we have not used any of our 5 smaller kayaks and we may end up selling them. Only difficulty is that we have a small Subaru Impressa sedan and when both kayaks are on the roof, they hang over on both ends. Kind of comical looking. I did have one of the knee brace screws pull out of the pad this summer but a little shoe-goo took care of that. We bought them at the Appomattox River Kayak Company in Virginia after trying several others out for size.

Overall we are very pleased with our kayaks and would recommend them without hesitation.


I have been paddling the…

Submitted by: plongtin on 9/16/2016
I have been paddling the Tsunami 145 roto-molded kayak for 6 months and love it. It is a stable kayak that fits larger paddlers. The seat is fantastic, I took it on a week long trip with absolutely no issues. The only issue I had with the boat is that the rudder is an option.

I love this boat! It's my…

Submitted by: Ranger1235 on 9/1/2016
I love this boat! It's my first new kayak purchase and I still can't get over how 1) quick and responsive she is and 2) how comfortable the seat is! Having paddled a lot in borrowed or rented boats, it was like getting a Tempurpedic mattress!

She handles well; I mostly paddle on a very large lake but we get waves, currents, and wind like coastal paddling so I'm sure she would handle those conditions well. She handles like a 16+ footer but I like the shorter size for exploring the creeks and bogs that enter our lake. The rigging is great besides the seat, but I would rather have had the small day hatch in front of my cockpit than in the rear, but the current configuration probably allows more cockpit room.

Overall, you can't go wrong with the Tsunami and that's probably why you rarely if ever see them for sale used!


What a pleasant change. I…

Submitted by: tbh7169 on 7/7/2016

What a pleasant change. I started kayaking in a 10.5 Fusion basic kayak. It was great for getting into the sport, especially after I added a fishing pole holder and a few other add ons. But it was limited, especially in wind and waves any higher than a foot. In addition, the deck was so low the only option for my feet was to be be turned out or put them up on top.

The Tsunami 14.5 fixed all of that. I got a great deal on a 2015 leftover, with a rudder. This baby handles the white caps on Lake Winnipesaukee very well and the rudder makes tracking in wind a joy. And the space! The design of the cockpit allows me to change the positioning of my feet so I'm comfortable over a longer period of time. The adjustable seat is really nice too.

What a pleasure to paddle. I'm really enjoying the thigh braces. I never knew they would make such a difference.

Having sealed bulkheads both fore and aft helps keep things dry and provides for extra flotation, not that I have tested that out yet.

At 56 pounds its a bit heavy for this old timer. It's amazing what a difference 6 pounds makes (compared to my Fusion). But I can man handle it on to the roof of the car on my own using Thule water slides.

Now if I can just find more time to use it.


I have paddled for many…

Submitted by: pgh124 on 6/16/2016

I have paddled for many years in Florida, when my son wanted a kayak for Christmas the door opened to purchase a boats for both of us. I choose the Tsunami 14.5. Since we are involved in Boy Scouts and we enjoy camping being able to transport gear and a stable platform were placed high on the list. Also was the type paddling we would be doing is mainly creeks, rivers, lakes and very limited open water. After several trips the Tsunami has proven to meet every all of my needs.

The cockpit- All of the factory installed thigh braces and foot pegs and seat are of quality, easily adjustable even when under way. Mu back really appreciates the multiple adjust points on the seat, as does my legs and rump. The cockpit is roomy yet you can still use your thighs to control the boat. I can stash a day pack/ dry bag behind the seat for my snacks and gear I want handy.

Hatches- this boat has three , a bow , stern and day hatch. I have not had a problem with the hatches leaking and have had water over the bow and the stern. I do check and recheck before launching that the hatches are secured property before launching, I have opened the day hatch while underway and resealed and did not have nay water get in, my only complaint is that they do not manufacture an access for the day hatch for stashing stuff and have easy access to it , it is just another opening into the stern stowage area. When the boat is loaded you can position a small bag under the opening and it can be retrieved, but if you are not loaded it is not very useful.

Storage- Lack of space for my gear has not been an issue, Since I back pack regularly , my gear is light weight and packs down. When camping with the kayak I have been bringing some "extras" like a larger sleeping pad and a regular sized chair. I did practice loading my gear in the boat for trimming purpose in the neighborhood pool....

Tracking - The boat tracks straight, when paddling i t wants to run. When in smaller creeks with down trees and other obstacles I have to watch not to get going or I am constancy back paddling and slowing as much as forward. It is a wide boat so others that have slightly narrower boats will be faster I enjoy the paddle not looking to race. But I can get moving when I want to.

Outfitting - I will be adding a rudder in the near future. my sons boat came with a rudder and that really makes the boat track much better and navigating in tight spaces easier.

I really enjoy paddling in the Tsunami and would recommend the boat to anybody that has similar needs and size.


My wife at a slender 5'7",…

Submitted by: paddler236792 on 5/25/2016
My wife at a slender 5'7", 130lbs stated she wanted us as a family to get kayaks and enjoy the many rivers in Southeastern Wisconsin. To find a kayak that suited her was very easy. In my exhaustive research of sitting in many kayaks and spending hours reading up on kayaks this sport really seemed to be ideally suited for smaller, lighter people. Many kayaks I tried I could not even sit inside them.

I stand at 6'1", 245lbs with size 14 feet. After buying two different kayaks that seemed to fit me in the store okay I took them in the water ad they proved to be almost impossible to steer. I was about to give up. Frustrated I sought out the advice of a kayak instructor, SherriKayaks. Upon hearing me describe my situation she gave me a list of six kayaks to consider. She also invited me to a paddlefest event hosted by Laacke & Joys in Milwaukee. This event would provide me the opportunity to try the Wilderness Tsunami 145. This was one of the kayaks on Sherri's list and was my top pick based on my research both here on paddling.com and manufacturers website specs for sizes and weight capacity.

From the moment I sat in the kayak I immediately felt comfortable. As I paddled I felt for the very first time I was not plowing water but as though I was sitting on the water. It tracked very well and was very maneuverable. It does not feel tippy and I feel very comfortable and stable.

I bought one that day and I have now been out twice. I bought one with a rudder that aids in steering. If I had one complaint I wish there was just another inch of travel for my feet as I have the pedals set as far back as I can. With my bare feet at this setting I feel my legs would appreciate just a little more room. As I get in the kayak I need to take my paddle and push down on pedal so I can slide my feet on the pedals as they have a tendency to spring back from the tension of the cable to the rudder. The kayak I tried at paddlefest did not have a rudder and it seemed t o have the pedals just slightly further forward.

I rate this kayak a ten. Why because I must admit if this kayak was not available I may not be able to kayak or at least it would not be as fun as my previous kayaks were a handful.

In many research I have read many people stating you should try a kayak before you buy. That is the best advice I can give you! Also if you can find a knowledgeable kayak instructor that can help guide you in what kayak that would be the best fit for you this will help you and save you time as there is so many choices out there. Consider the cockpit sizes, what thigh braces or padding that is used and if it can be adjusted and look at the weight capacity.

If you are over 6' tall and if you weigh over 200lbs. this kayak could be your best and perhaps your only choice.


I have had my Wilderness…

Submitted by: wmclift on 5/19/2016
I have had my Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 for a few years. It's my first kayak and it's performed beyond my expectations. I have used my Tsunami 145 in lakes, slow moving rivers and on the Mendocino Coast. It's definitely an all around kayak. It tracks well, has plenty of room to get in and out. It also has lots of storage place if your interested in overnight kayak camping.

After much research, I…

Submitted by: srantala on 4/29/2016
After much research, I purchased a Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145. I paddle both lakes and rivers in Michigan and have been very happy with how the 145 performs. Being 6'-4" and 225 lbs, I'm able to get in and out easily and fit is comfortable. I tried the 140 but it was too small. I wanted a kayak to grow into as I become more experienced and tackle more challenging paddles. It tracks great w/o rudder and is able to keep up with most other kayaks without to much effort.

I purchased a Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: BryanPW on 2/18/2016
I purchased a Tsunami 145 back in 2014 and I love it. It's fast (once you get it up to speed), maneuverable and not overly heavy. The only reason I gave it a 9 out of 10 is because I really wish I had bumped up to the 165 so that I could have gotten the separation bulkhead from day hatch to stern hatch.
Other than that, this is an awesome boat.

We recently purchased two new…

Submitted by: mayrel on 11/11/2015
We recently purchased two new kayaks after having decided to move to sit inside after having owned SOT's. I purchased the Tsunami 145. For those interested in these kayaks, I'm 67, 5'11" @200 pounds. After test paddling several different kayaks, the 145 won out.

It's easy to paddle, handles very nicely, is fitted for an optional rudder, seat is extremely comfortable, fit and finish as good as any, and has both very good initial and secondary stability. I plan to also install a KayakSailor 1.4m sailing rig, which I highly recommend as well. Alas I digress, the 145 shares a unique hull design with all the Tsunami models; shallow "V" bottom with hard chines makes these kayaks track well, paddle nicely due to the narrow beam and long waterline. It turns well since you can lean it over with confidence to initiate turns. The three hatches/storage areas are sized to make getting items in and out easily. You can adjust the foot pedals easily too. The seat is a reportedly the leading design in the industry, which we agree.

When selecting a sit-inside kayak, we researched and discussed all aspects with owners, this site and dealers. Fit and comfort are very important, as is handling. Another factor is desired type of paddling(recreational, touring, fishing). The 145 is well suited for those less experienced or experts. We are pleased with the quality and design of the 145 and 135.


I have been paddling the 145…

Submitted by: phalfmann on 8/11/2015
I have been paddling the 145 for 2 years and have used on calm lakes, slow rivers, and New England sea coast. I'm just under 6 feet tall and 200 lbs. The Tsunami is very comfortable with plenty of room, which is a blessing and a problem at the same time.

Last year I was very happy simply paddling with little maneuvering and using the rudder in rougher water in the ocean. I wish the cable to deploy rudder was heavier because you need to pull quite hard to drop the rudder. On my first pull the line separated from the round disc and I had to re-tie. The tsunami tracks very well and designed to travel straight, which is good for trips.

I have been taking sea kayaking classes and am a little disappointed in the responsiveness of the boat. Because it is designed to track straight, tight turns are very difficult compared to the other sea kayaks I've seen in class. My instructor explained the Tsunami is a fine touring boat but you will have a harder time turning with the rest of us. I am now taking rolling class and find the cockpit too large to properly hip snap. I will probably have to outfit the cockpit with extra padding to make rolling easier. That suggestion comes from my instructor.

I am still please with the boat but have to rate it a 7 because of my recent classes and the need for a more responsive boat, however when padding in the open water, this boat is great and I would rate a 9. One thing to remember is if you are going to use in water where a spray skirt is needed you will find swapping the backrest for a back band makes it much easier to fit the skirt.


The Wilderness Tsunami 145 is…

Submitted by: paddler236326 on 7/2/2015
The Wilderness Tsunami 145 is my most recent purchase and I have to say I am so glad I got this kayak! It is speedy, stable, - looks mighty fine!! - and COMFORTABLE!!! This kayak gave me no aches and pains afterwards whatsoever! The seat is beautifully designed and the cockpit was plenty roomy which suits me as I felt safe, stable and could still ply through the water at a fairly speedy pace. Well done Wilderness for this lovely Kayak.

Bought my Tsunami 145 last…

Submitted by: paddler236273 on 6/16/2015
Bought my Tsunami 145 last summer and have had it out several times now. Paddles very well considering I am 250 lbs at 6'. Love backpacking and find this to be a new challenge for overnight adventures. Gear is not an issue in this boat as my backpacking gear is light enough.

I have the rudder assembly and frankly I like using it. It's nice to get into a rhythm paddling and when needed, I correct steering with my feet. It does track well but wind, shifting weight does tend to cause me to turn. However, that said, my rudder has given me a few problems. The line used for lowering and raising the rudder has gotten off the pulley leaving the rudder in a fixed position and unable to fix while solo paddling until I can exit the boat. Steering cables have been known to come unattached and steering is not functional. All are very easily fixed when out of the boat or if a second person is available but very frustrating when paddling solo.

Overall, I love the size of this boat, how it handles, storage capacity, and the new adventures it provides me. Granted, a bigger boat might be better suited for longer trips and open water but I feel I selected well for a single option to provide the most opportunity.


I purchased this boat a few…

Submitted by: silvercobra on 5/11/2015
I purchased this boat a few months ago and I have had it on the water about four times so far. I am only 115 lbs but I am 6 foot tall with size 12 feet. I carry quite a bit of gear with me everywhere I go so I think that helps with the weight issue.

This kayak seems to give me plenty of foot room and it doesn't really swallow me up like one would think. I haven't had a use for the rudder yet and with it being foot controlled it is kind of annoying not being able to put my full force on the foot pegs.

I took it down a very narrow river recently and I was able to maneuver everything alright once I learned how to turn it better. I was able to keep up with my friend who was in a Dagger Katana though I had to plan my routes whereas he could just jump in.

Overall really great boat, TONS of storage space, stays straight without rudder but can turn when done properly. I am very satisfied for it being my third kayak.


I've owned around 7 kayaks…

Submitted by: paddler236076 on 2/8/2015
I've owned around 7 kayaks and this is my favourite, it's the best kayak I've used for tracking I hardly ever use the rudder (I paddle on a lake) which can get windy and ruff. Its stable and one could use, edges easy, turn well.

The only reason I gave it a 9 was I haven't got the seat right yet (maybe just adjusting needed) plus I got caught in really bad weather (wind 35 kl) didn't have a skirt on as I was paddling through 2 foot swell in the lake if I paddled to hard over first wave I would go under the next wave and take in water in the cockpit, once I stopped going hard over the first wave problem was solved but I was in a hurry to get home and out of the weather before it got worse which I had a good 3 hour paddle into the wind.

All in all I would recommend this kayak and I love using it.


I bought this at the…

Submitted by: paddler236103 on 1/14/2015
I bought this at the beginning of Spring 2014 from a great paddling shop in Etobicoke and have been very happy with the purchase. Currently I do not use a rudder, however it is rudder ready if I ever decide to try one.

I'm am not the slimmest of guys, but the boat can take my weight (225 lb) and all my gear, no problem. It cuts through the water like a knife and though it takes a bit more effort than other boats I have tried to get up to speed, once you're going a good clip it's sustainable with minimal effort.

This boat works very well for me and I am happy with my purchase.


I had my first paddle in the…

Submitted by: paddler236076 on 12/8/2014
I had my first paddle in the tsunami 145 today this is my 6th kayak and I was very happy with the way it performed. I tried it out on the lake I live on and didn't have to use the rudder at all as it tracked so well I was worried about turning as a few reviews had said it was hard to turn but not so it was so easy to turn. I have bad knees so the larger cockpit is an advantage to me. Looking forward to taking it out when the lake is ruff.

I find the Wilderness Systems…

Submitted by: paddler235920 on 9/3/2014
I find the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 to be a great all around boat that gets me on the water. I am a big guy at 6'2" and 250, and I fit well in this kayak.

I use this Tsunami 145 kayak just to get out on the water as well as train, rather than take out my larger expedition kayak. I also add ballast to help get the kayak lower in the water, even at my weight.

I selected the Tsunami 145 after traveling to many kayak festivals and trying on kayaks in Charleston, SC and Madison, WI. I settled on a Go With The Flow near Atlanta because of their expertise, customer service, and best price.

I have paddled this back and forth across Tampa Bay in bigger wind and waves and felt good and the hatches kept the cargo areas dry.

If you are looking to find a comfortable kayak to paddle on leisure cruises on lakes rivers and creeks, I recommend this kayak for bigger folks.


This is my second year with…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/3/2014
This is my second year with my Tsunami 145 and I really like the boat. It's roomy and the seat is very comfortable and I like the adjustments that can be made to suit your needs. I am 5'10" and 180 lbs and the cockpit is plenty big which I like for the kind of paddling I do which is small rivers and lakes no big waves or rapids. I do have the rudder but I have yet to use it as I haven't had any issues with tracking. The storage is more than adequate and would be suitable for overnight excursions although I have not done that yet.

It is a pretty fast boat for its size and compared to my Current Designs Whistler its pretty comparable in speed. My girl friend had a Dagger Alchemy 14L and hers is a little bit faster but it's also a tighter fit for me and so is the Whistler for that matter. Out of the three boats the Tsunami wins in the comfort category hands down.

The Tsunami boats do pop up on CL from time to time and if you can find a seller that's not too proud of their boat you can get them for a decent price, you can also find them for a discount from retailers selling off their inventory at the end of the season in the Midwest anyway but for the most part they do not discount the Tsunami model. This is a very popular boat and after enjoying mine for two seasons I know why.


You can't do better than…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/11/2014
You can't do better than this. Overall performance, handling, comfort and stability, the 145 has it all and it's plenty of room for the average man to be enjoy the fit. I paddle coastal, big open water lakes and rivers. I am never disappointed. You'll love it too!

I've bought about 50 used…

Submitted by: shortmarie on 7/2/2014
I've bought about 50 used kayaks, always looking for a good deal. I finally broke down and bought a new 14.5 Tsunami. I had to buy new, because NOBODY ever sells their Tsunami. That should tell you a lot. If I had bought this boat first, I wouldn't have bought the other 49...
Great boat, very stable, easy to maneuver

In May 2014 I upgraded to a…

Submitted by: cottamcamper1 on 6/13/2014
In May 2014 I upgraded to a poly Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 with rudder from a WS Pungo 140 without rudder. When I test paddled a Tsunami 145, I noticed it had the same initial and secondary stability, the incredibly comfortable Phase 3 seat and storage capacity as the Pungo but the overall handling and turning ability was different. I found that it responds quicker to turning strokes better, I think, due to the upswept bow and hull as well as the fact that it is 3.5 inches narrower. It handles waves somewhat like the Pungo but has more slicing ability to cut through the large waves. Like any other boat, it will weathercock into the wind but the rudder helps you correct that problem.

I found the foot pegs to be uncomfortable while using the rudder so I have ordered the WS Keepers Padded footpegs. I had a spray skirt for the Pungo but did not enjoy using it as it was difficult to put on the cockpit. I bought a Seals brand size 1.7 spray skirt for the Tsunami but I found it too difficult to put on the coaming of the cockpit so I borrowed a Harmony brand Large size from a local dealer until my new spray skirt comes in and it is much easier to put on. I love the secure feeling a skirt gives me while paddling in rough waters. I arrive at my destinations dry and no bilge pumping needed.

I rate the WS Tsunami 145 poly a 10 because it is an all purpose kayak. One drawback is its weight of 59 lbs (with rudder) but I think that it is a good thing because it means the polyethylene hull is thicker than most kayaks and can withstand bumping the odd rock or log resulting in minimal damage.

A good quality kayak by Wildy. Just remember that every kayak comes with basic features and needs to be outfitted for your personal comfort and style. Happy paddling!


Purchased this boat about 16…

Submitted by: Saumier on 4/24/2014
Purchased this boat about 16 months ago and have paddled the FL Intercoastal as well as NY's Adirondack's. The boat is stable but still reasonably fast with ample storage for day trips to a week of camping. Suitable for paddlers 200+ pounds as it has a large cockpit. The newer version has an improved seat backrest, albeit the one I purchased works fine.

The only reason I gave this boat a 9 in lieu a 10 is that as on paddles more frequently a slightly narrower boat may be desired, but this boat will serve me well for several years to come.


I purchased this boat to do…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 10/14/2013
I purchased this boat to do expedition like kayaking. I recently took the boat on a 4.5 day trip down the Delaware River. I carried all my gear in the boat for the entire trip. The boat had sufficient room.

We had significant rain the first night out and the river went up about a foot. The boat did well in all of the rapids on the river which I believe go up to Class II. I never felt at risk of flipping the boat. It seemed to mainly shed water well and there were some waves probably 4 ft.

The boat takes a bit to get going, but it cruised well particularly with the large load of supplies. I was able to do ~40 miles 3 days in a row. I completed the 160 trip in 4.5 days.

I don't know the below deck storage capacity but I wish that I did. I'm not sure why Wilderness Systems/Confluence Watersports don't provide this information. I've asked them through their website. No response from them. Disappointing. I also have asked another question about registration and warranty and they didn't respond to that question either. Otherwise, I'm totally pleased with the boat.


Picked up a used Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: TonyE on 8/9/2013
Picked up a used Tsunami 145 with rudder last year and have to say it's a wonderful multi-purpose kayak. Very stable, has decent speed, rather light for it's size and comfortable for 3-4 hour trips (my longest to date). Have not had to use the rudder for flat lake or class II river rapids. Though the one time I did need it came in very handy to keep me pointed in the right direction on a high-sierra lake that had ocean like swells and high surface winds. It gets a big 10 from my experience so far.

I always hated canoe's. I…

Submitted by: DUUJ on 7/29/2013
I always hated canoe's. I found them uncomfortable, unstable, and clumsy. (However, if you have spent more than the past few moments at P.Net, there are those that would love to have me bound with birch bark and taken to the place where Jimmy Hoffa has never been found.) I also passed on a trip to the Arctic because I was terrified of kayaks.
It took a major operation six years ago to convince me that it was time to try a kayak. I demoed them and rented them and read about kayaks for over a year. However, the Tsunami was among the first that I paddled and loved. I remember thinking, "I doubt that I could ever stitch myself into something like this and hunt seals among the ice flows, but this sure beats a canoe."

I had my first "Zen of Kayaking" moment when I realized, "Hey, my bottom is below the waterline! Aside from swimming, this is as close as you're going to get to 'becoming one' with the water."
(I would recommend Anna Levesque's excellent article, "The Yoga of Kayaking" which is available here on P.Net. It is not just for women, nor those interested only in whitewater.)

Choosing a kayak is a very personal endeavor. Like Goldilocks, you're looking for "not too big, not too small, not too hot, not too cold...but just right." The Tsunami was "just right" for my six foot two inches and one hundred and ninety five pounds. During the past two years we have been together on the water over ninety days, and I have wished for a rudder on only two of those. I have never longed for a sippy cup holder.

I deducted two points from the rating of my beloved Tsunami because I wrote to Wilderness with a bulkhead question, and never received a reply. However, that point has been awarded to P.Net, because the question was posted and answered and the problem was solved. (Many have wondered if there are factory reps lurking in the wings of these pages.) One additional point was added because lhartje did exhaustive research and discovered that this amazing plastic boat holds Ten Thousand Cubic Inches of Stuff in water protected bliss. Aren't you amazed and impressed? I am!

Many who contribute to these pages live for the opportunity to pilot their boats when winds pick up and waves start to roll. I am not among them. On a very large boat I crossed the Irish sea in a force nine gale, and remember it as the night I would have welcomed death. I never plan to take my Tsunami anywhere near a tsunami.
If you need to go really fast, I still recommend a bass boat. But we often forget that kayaks allow us to go places where power and even sailboats cannot. We never need to worry about fowling a prop or running aground. We can essentially go where "no boater has gone before." Yes, I know, if they did, it was probably in... a canoe.


I've had the Tsunuami 145 for…

Submitted by: WolfSoul on 7/26/2013
I've had the Tsunuami 145 for several years now and I love this boat. It's definitely not the fastest boat on the water, but it has tons of storage space for overnight trips, is exceptionally stable, tracks well and is plenty fast for my purposes.

I've had it loaded down with camping gear, including firewood on a 5 day trip without coming close to submarining the thing. I've used it on small lakes, large lakes (Lake Powell) and the ocean and it has handled everything well. I find it to be very comfortable as well. I've put in a 26 mile day in this boat without any more discomfort than one would expect just sitting for that long. I now have 4 kayaks and this remains my favorite.


My wife and I purchased 2…

Submitted by: robgwebb on 7/25/2013
My wife and I purchased 2 Tsunami poly kayaks 9 years ago. The seats are very comfortable for long paddles, very stable boats in a variety of conditions. Great kayak for a small lake and short trips.

Great boats. My husband and I…

Submitted by: dstrouse on 7/24/2013
Great boats. My husband and I have had ours 7 years. Indestructible! A very stable boat yet tracks well. The only reason I don't give it a 10 is because it is a little heavy. That might be my problem and not the boat's!

I have several kayaks…

Submitted by: paddler235141 on 7/24/2013
I have several kayaks (Perception Expression 145, Pungo 120 and 140 Dagger 10 and an Ascend 10) and bought the Tsunami 145 for comfort and speed and a little more stability than the Expression. I am very pleased with the handling capabilities and with and without the tracking system.

I've had it over 6 months now and finally got in some big waves and swift current the other day ... other than a splash here and there it glided through the turbulence with ease and grace. I was with a party of folks that had mostly Ocean Kayaks (sit on top) and was able to watch them approach the rapids ... they got very wet .. I did not.

This kayak is going to be my horse except maybe for very small creeks. It's excellent on smooth lakes, big rivers, and fast rivers with rapids ... Class III's are pushing it for me but I'm sure that it would do well with a more experienced person in it.


I've had the Tsunami 145 for…

Submitted by: nhcaveman on 7/15/2013
I've had the Tsunami 145 for a few months now and couldn't be happier with it. I shopped all last winter to find a used one at a good value. I'd buy a second one in a second if one comes my way. Extremely stable, tracks great and I really never use the rudder except if I'm just playing with it. I have a back band kit I plan to swap for the seat back, just a preference really. You cannot go wrong with this boat.

I'm very much a beginner at…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 6/21/2013
I'm very much a beginner at kayaking and didn't want to buy one kayak only to find out I wanted something different. After much research I finalized it down to three different makes and models. I ended up with the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 with a rudder and I couldn't be happier. It is a good combination of stability and speed. The boat is very stable and the rudder system makes tracking easy. Even with the rudder stowed tracking is pretty good. I would recommend this kayak.

I have had many boats in my…

Submitted by: Scout1947 on 5/30/2013
I have had many boats in my day, but I am down to two. My fist good kayak is a Tsunami 15.5 UltrLight. I say, "is," because it still is my number one boat for camping. It holds a week of gear without complaint. I hesitate to admit this, but the Tsunami flew off my car at 100kph, and it suffered only minor injuries. The rudder and port were only scratched!!!!! I just returned from an Adirondack trip, and had a great time. By the way, I'm 65 years old. I'll drive this boat forever.

The Tsunami 145 is my first…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/27/2013
The Tsunami 145 is my first sit inside boat. I will probably never paddle a sit-on-top again, if I have a choice. The 145 is stable, very roomy in the cockpit and the hatches seems to be very much watertight. The kayak cuts through the waves and seems very stable, it likes to be on edge. It's light enough to carry and load solo.

I ordered the Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: paddler234919 on 3/15/2013
I ordered the Tsunami 145 with rudder from L.L.Bean last year during their big kayak sale. This is a great kayak. I have paddled it through the ocean in 4 to 6' seas and everything in between, it handles great. The rudder is a great option and worth every dime. In rough currents and waves that sweep you sideways in a minute you will be glad you bought the rudder.

The Tsunami 145 is so much more than my Carolina 14 was. Waves would pick up the stern of my Carolina 14 and stick the bow under water. Not to say that it still doesn't happen but I feel much more stable with the Tsunami hull design. I owned a Boreal Ellsmere 17' fiberglass kayak last year, what a Cadillac, but it was a little too tipsy for me. I also have a Hobie Revolution 13 that is fun if you are in the mood to paddle, peddle or sail. If you buy a Revolution 13 get the optional Turbo Fins, the Sailing Rudder and the Sail. You really will have a blast.


My wife and I both have 145…

Submitted by: paddler234750 on 9/5/2012
My wife and I both have 145 Tsunamis with rudders. Spent a week in 2006 paddling Everglades. Great storage, tracking and speed no one else in the group could keep up with us. Still have both boats and after almost 7 years still enjoy them

I recently bought a poly…

Submitted by: paddler234443 on 3/4/2012
I recently bought a poly Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 for small rivers and lakes. My other boat is a Romany Explorer, too large and heavy for day paddling in small areas. I love the Tsunami, it is extremely stable, tracks well (I don't have a rudder) and surprise, it also turns well. Weather cocking can be corrected easily with a paddle only, no rudder necessary. However the boat comes setup for the optional rudder so if the paddler required it the retrofit should be cheap. I would recommend it as a great beginners boat or as a backup for experienced paddlers.

Two problems: first this not a fast boat, second the aft hatch leaks as does almost every other 145 I know of. I have tried several new and used hatch covers and am now working on modifying mine to include a strap around the circumference. I still like the boat and I knew the hatch would probably leak when I bought it. The boat is that good otherwise.


I purchased the 145 duralite…

Submitted by: paddler234312 on 10/3/2011
I purchased the 145 duralite tusnami to meet my needs for a larger entry and storage potential in 2006. It is well worn and still floats but is not the boat I had wished for.

The duralite hull is flimsy although it has ridden over its share of rocks and logs and is has only surface scratches. The oilcanning and warp are more noticeable and yet it still tracks well in mild current and wind. The cockpit is comfortable for me and I use the sealine deck bag to hold goodies. The deck bag has blocked water when it comes over the deck in rougher water, but the low rim allows water to come in. This is a particular concern when going with the wind/waves. The hatch covers do not seal that well and when the material dries with age it becomes even more a concern. The foam bulkheads are cheap and have broken seals so the water flows the length of the boat. I could reseal them but the flexibility of the hull with foam bulkheads seems to indicate that will always be an issue. The few pounds saved on duralite probably was a mistake.

Over all I think it is a good boat for a mass produced rotomolded plastic product, but some shortcuts in the foam bulkheads and the increased problems the duralite has added would cause me to rethink my purchase.


My wife and I purchased WS…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/13/2011
My wife and I purchased WS Tsunamis a couple of months ago. I purchased the 14.5, she purchased the 14, both with rudders. We bought these boats after taking lessons and trying several different boat types and sizes as well as doing extensive online research. We live in western Washington and paddle on lakes and in Puget Sound a couple of times a week.

We love the boats, very durable, excellent stability, great storage capacity. Have nothing but praise for the boats, we find them easy to use, maneuverable, efficient and tons of fun. We note our ability to paddle past most other recreational boats we encounter and far more comfortable. The adjustable seats are superb. Great choice.


My wife and I have Pungo…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/19/2011
My wife and I have Pungo 140's. This year we stepped up to Tsunami 145's and we have no regrets. The boat handles great on the windy lake here in Texas. I would suggest any one who paddles a rec boat now give the Tsunami's a try.

I received my Tsunami 145 in…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/31/2011
I received my Tsunami 145 in May and enjoy it a lot. I've had it on inland lakes and took it on overnight excursions on the Muskegon River and the White River. I also purchased the optional rudder kit which I recommend for anyone who plans on using it on big water or in tight areas. The most fun I've had with it though was fishing on Lake Michigan for salmon. These monsters of the deep will take you for quite a ride, but if you're going to try this make sure you have the rudder kit and the paddle kick stand with a paddle float. These power houses can turn on a dime, and keeping them between the bow and the kickstand can be a real exciting workout. The stability of this kayak is phenomenal and takes on the big lake rollers without dipping the bow. I can easily pack a tent and light bag a change of clothes in the front hatch leaving the whole rear hatch for provisions. I'm 6' 2" and go 225 and have ample room without getting too sloppy in the pit. The easily adjusted seat makes for continued comfort on that all day paddle. My only complaint is that Wilderness didn't put screws of sufficient length with the rudder kit to penetrate the hull, hold the washer and meet the nylon lock in the nut. But I overcame this by purchasing 4 stainless steel screws from the local hardware for a mere $.77 (including tax)

I have owned my Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/31/2011
I have owned my Tsunami 145 for a couple of months and I love it. The boat tracks like a dream and turns very well. The boat is well set up and has plenty of room for me (5'10/200 lbs) and the phase 3 seat is the most comfortable and easiest to adjust that I have ever used. You can lay the seat back or pull it forward, adjust the backrest height, and pull the sides up for side support all while sitting in the yak. I go on some pretty long trips and have never had any thing go to sleep yet. The plastic used to make the boat is very tough as the river I frequently go to is full of tough debris just below the surface from the hurricanes last year. I constantly am powering over logs and getting jammed by submerged stumps and it doesn't even leave a mark on the hull. Primary stability is good although it can be a challenge getting into the boat in some places, but you can lay the boat over all the way to the cockpit without feeling like you are going to go over. I like to lean way into turns and the boat is great for that. The thigh braces are great for supporting you when you are powering into tight turns. The boat turns very well and has ample speed even at a leisurely paddling rate. I agree that the day hatch should be separated from the rear hatch but I usually put anything I need while I'm in the boat in a dry bag behind the seat. There is plenty of room there and it is easily accessible. I put my water bottles, sunglasses etc. on the deck under the bungees in front of me. I have had no problems with the hatch lids and they are water tight. You can even see them sink down when you put the boat in cold water and the air cools inside the compartments. If they are air tight, water is no problem. Overall, no part of this kayak has gone unnoticed by WS. Great, light boat that looks great and functions even better. I am constantly getting complements on it wherever I go. I love it and would highly recommend it to anyone for a great all purpose kayak.

I was in the market for a…

Submitted by: paddler233829 on 9/29/2010
I was in the market for a stable touring kayak for calm coastal and river paddling on the west coast of Florida. After researching numerous manufacturers and models, and test paddling quite a few, I purchased a WS 145 in August of 2010. On my maiden voyage I noticed that I could not get the rear hatch cover to stay on. I took it back to the dealer and he said that I needed to "stretch" out the hatch by forcing it on and then putting some weight on it to hold it down for a few days in the sun. I tried this and it did not work. The dealer then gave me a new hatch cover and I had the same problems. I finally took the whole boat back and the dealer concluded that the hatch opening was slightly too large or warped. He said that rotomolding is not a very precise manufacturing method, that WS has had issues with their oval hatch covers, and that they redesigned the rear hatch unit in 2009 (my boat was a 2006 model). He said WS would warranty the boat and gave me a new boat (a 2008 model) on the spot. I was impressed with the dealer's customer service, but asked him why he was selling inventory that was 4 years old. He said that my boat was discounted by $50 because it was an older model, that he keeps all his inventory inside, protected from the elements, and that it is not uncommon for kayak dealers to sell models that are several years old. I don't know about that, but oh well.

Anyway, my new 2008 model has been fantastic, and I have had no issues with the hatch covers at all. Since this is my first touring kayak I don't have much to compare it to, but I love this boat. Initial and secondary stability are great, and I can still effective edge turns. I am 6'1" and 200 lbs. and this boat fits me perfectly. The Phase 3 seat is very adjustable and comfortable for long paddling outings. The boat does weathercock into the wind somewhat, but it can be overcome by corrective paddling and edging. I do, however, plan to buy and install the optional rudder system in the near future to minimize corrective paddling. I have taken the boat out into to small surf and choppy conditions and it performs very well. The high front deck provides a sense of security, and I am confident this boat can handle anything I might get into in my local area. Finally, the storage capacity is very large, and I can easily fit all my wilderness camping gear and ample food/water into it. I plan to do several extended day trips this fall and winter.

In summary, although I had some issues with my initial purchase, WS and my local dealer made it right without any hassles. The WS 145 is a solid, well designed, touring kayak suitable for beginner and intermediate kayakers. I am an intermediate paddler and don't plan on needing to learn how to roll this kayak. It is perfect for my needs.


I have owned the Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/11/2010
I have owned the Tsunami 145 for three months and have done 11 paddling trips this summer. I am really pleased with my purchase. Being 6'3" I have plenty of leg room, which I did NOT have in the 140. I weigh 200 lbs so the cock pit is a bit wide for me, but I was able to stay firmly in the boat while kayaking class 3 rapids in northern Wisconsin. I adjusted the foot rests one notch closer and all was fine. That said, this is probably not the best boat for class 3 rapids simply because of the length, but it tracked really well and I did not tip. Minimal water splashed over the hull and into the boat while going through these rapids, and both hulls stayed dry. I like how the third smaller hatch is accessible while sitting in the boat. For someone who sometimes has lower back pain, the seat is perfect for back stability and comfort. A great boat for long day trips or weekend trips because of the large amount of storage in the hulls. With the boat weighing 56 pounds, I advise using a step ladder when loading it by yourself onto an SUV because loading it from the ground by yourself can be a bit cumbersome. A great buy!

I've had a Tsunami 145 for a…

Submitted by: Stealthcamper on 8/31/2009
I've had a Tsunami 145 for a little over a year and before that I paddled a Tsunami 140 of a friend's.
I am a large guy (6'3" 205lbs) and I did not have enough legroom in the 140. My feet went past the foot pegs and I had to use a foam block in front of the bulkhead which was not ideal. Also I wanted a larger cockpit opening. I didn't need any extra width but the extra length and height of the 145's cockpit made getting my legs in so much easier.

I have no trouble maintaining 4-4.5mph in the 145 for long stretches, although the power required to go any faster is logarithmic in scale. I can reach 6mpg but only at the risk of cardiac arrest! I use a Greenland style paddle.

I absolutely love the boat. I've only been paddling for two years but I've tried several other types of boats (17' fiberglass boats, and one skin - on frame) and none are anywhere near as comfortable and versatile. I love the amount of gear I can put in it. An 8 day trip down the Suwanee river was no problem. I don't have to worry about scraping it on rocks or oyster beds.

Mine has the rudder which I recommend. Once I got used to it my feet almost subconsciously steer the boat while I concentrate on padding most efficiently. Very effective also in windy conditions as well as side currents in winding rivers.

You cannot beat the seat in this kayak. No other boat (except the Tusnami 140) I've tried approaches the same level of comfort and this makes being in the boat for hours a non-issue. The boat is also very stable. I have not even attempted to learn to roll in this boat. It is so stable I don't think it would roll well and unless I put myself in a very stupid situation, I don't think it would ever be necessary.

I have not had any rear hatch problems with my 145, although we had 2 140s and had trouble with the rear hatches on both. One thing I do not like is that the seat does not move close enough to the rear of the cockpit opening making attaching the spray skirt quite difficult. I find it almost impossible when attempted solo in rough conditions.

Another thing I would change is that the cockpit is too wide for me. I need the extra length in the 145 but I have trouble becoming "one with the boat" due to the wide cockpit. This is exaggerated by the fact that one has to have space for the legs to move to work the rudder rather than have the knees firmly wedged against the sides of the cockpit. I still think the rudder is worth it for the environments I typically paddle. This is not a problem with the boat itself, just things that are challenges for me.

If you like to paddle for extended lengths of time and/or kayak camp the Wilderness Systems Tsunami is hard to beat. I recommend the 140 for normal size paddlers and the 145 for large or tall paddlers.


I chose the Tsunami 14.5…

Submitted by: paddler233323 on 8/24/2009
I chose the Tsunami 14.5 because I wanted a boat with the capacity to support multi-day trips but could still be used in smaller streams with serious class II (and maybe easy class III) rapids. I am also a larger and older paddler and wanted a roomier cockpit for easier in and out. In my two years with this boat I have paddled tight little streams with rapids, 4 foot surf in the Gulf of Mexico, and in blowing winds on choppy Chesapeake Bay. Now that I just completed a 115 mile 6 day trip fully loaded with gear and food, I am happy to say my Tsunami has lived up to all my expectations.

Of course nothing is perfect and neither is the Tsunami 14.5. The primary issues have already been described in previous posts; that being the rear hatch, boat speed, and occasional shipping of water into the cockpit. Of these, the hatch problem is the most significant. Whether it is the size, shape or design this large hatch is difficult to seal well. Personally I don’t think slow speed is an issue; but you have to remember that this boat is designed to haul a bigger paddler with a big load. I have had no problems keeping up with other length Tsunamis, and I think this boat is actually faster with a load. The final issue of shipping water is that if you are paddling in choppy waves over one foot high or in class II whitewater, you need to have a skirt. Hey, but it’s a kayak not a canoe!

On the issue with the rudder, if you can afford one buy it. The Tsunami 14.5 tracks perfectly straight in normal conditions, but like any boat, it will try to turn up into the wind if there is a strong breeze or following sea. While this tendency can be overcome with paddling stroke, on a long tour you can waste a bunch of energy trying to keep the boat straight. A rudder gives you that extra control in more extreme conditions and saves those arms for propulsion rather than steering.

In conclusion, unless you are a whitewater wizard or a sea going Viking, the Tsunami 14/14.5 is the perfect boat for the touring enthusiast. It is fully capable of handling any water the average Joe wants to go, and it will get you there safely, comfortably and with all your gear. If you are a skinny wiry dude, go for the 14. If you need a bit more capacity and a few more inches in the cockpit go with the 14.5. Either way, you will never paddle a canoe again.


I bought a Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 5/27/2009
I bought a Tsunami 145 w/Rudder this past February, I since have paddled this yak a couple hundred miles, I paddle this boat average 2-3 times a week on Creeks and lakes and my average trip is 10 miles. I also did a few over nighter average 33 miles. I am a novice paddler; the only other Kayak I have paddled and own is a Old Town Dirigo 106, this not a bad yak either, but it is a tub by comparison.

Now onto the Review
I love this boat for my novice usage. I don't feel a rudder on this boat is all that helpful since it tracks straight as an arrow and turns fine.

The seat is very comfortable and easy to adjust on the go. This boat is also easy to wet exit, yes I have had it upside down goofing off now that the water has warmed up. The boat is seriously stable I felt comfortable the first time out. The hatches are ok the front never leaks; the rear leaks a little but nothing major, and I believe the leak is around the rudder cables where they enter the boat. I am working on sealing them but you know it's not enough of a leak to really bother with more like condensation at the end of the day.

Over all this is a very functional yak and very easy to paddle. I have no complaints for a step up away from dedicated rec yaks this yak is perfect.


I have owned a 145 for about…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/17/2009
I have owned a 145 for about 18 months. I like the boat a lot. I am 64 and have paddled mostly rivers for the past 30 years, moving from canoe to kayak about 7 years ago.

I bought this boat for week-long river trips. Some of these trips are flat water like the Green in Utah, and some have whitewater. We just ran the Lower Canyons of the Rio Grande about two weeks ago -- ran some IIIs. This boat is not a whitewater boat, but it did okay. It won't make those quick turns in a rapid, but it's not meant to. It is comfortable and stable, and reasonably fast, and I can put a lot of gear and supplies in it. I am 5'10", 195 lbs. and not the most agile person in the world, but the cockpit fits me fine and the seat & thigh braces are just right. I never used a rudder before, but it's very helpful on flat water with a cross wind.

My main complaints are: The boat badly needs a place for my water bottle and snack/sunscreen bag that is convenient and not just bouncing around on the floor between my legs, and the back hatch cover doesn't fit well or seem secure -- I had to put clips and shock cords over it. My other complaint is that in standing waves or small white water the boat takes too much water over the cockpit edge under my arms where the cockpit edge is lower in the back. I know I can wear a skirt at those times, but most of the hours of those days are spent on flat water in warm climates, and I find the spray skirt uncomfortable and difficult to put on -- you know the drill -- the other end pops off, and I envy my smaller friends who have spray skirts with large zippers that they can leave on the boat and enter thru. I have one like that, but I can't enter the boat with it on without popping it loose, and it's still too confining to leave on all the time -- so, there I am free and comfortable, and then here comes a bend and a bit of white water! The water goes right through the back bulkhead (I reseal it but it still leaks) and into the back hatch, which means pulling out gear to get at the water later. Does anyone have a line on an easier spray skirt for me? I had a "1/2" skirt on the old yak, but it's not the front of the cockpit, but the back that takes on water. I don't need (or want) to roll the boat, I just need to repel most of the spray. I can imagine a skirt with two or thee zippers that radiate out from the center. I could open it way up, get in and zip up. Anything like that around?

Thanks for listening. I am paddling rivers until I can't put the yak on top of the truck. That's when I'll know to quit. My four grandsons can take over the boats then...


I am 5'6" 235lbs. I tried…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 3/17/2009
I am 5'6" 235lbs. I tried this yak and LOVED it. It was the first time I paddled touring yaks. I tried the Perception Carolina14 and really didn't like it. I got into the 145 and it felt great as soon as I sat down. It was stable, fairly fast, tracked well, and was really comfortable. I ALMOST bought it but went with the Pungo 140. I am going to get a Tsunami165 soon. Great boats!!

I've owned the Tsunami 145…

Submitted by: paddler232998 on 1/19/2009
I've owned the Tsunami 145 since the end of last season, and have only gotten to take it out once. I (being 5'11" 125lbs) still rated it a ten because I had it through strong currents and calm bays, it handled beautifully in both. Just one thing you should look for, mine is a pre-used (3 times one being me) and I noticed the stern compartments dry seal lid isn't connecting tightly. I can only fit it over but it is still loose. The store I bought it from said "this spring if it is still a problem they will replace the lid." I'm only saying this because not all stores will be so generous. Make sure before you purchase any new kayak check it over and make sure you are happy with all the appliances. Other then that the Tsunami handles beautifully and tracks great. I love having the rudder system for the strong currents.

Fantastic Boat! I should…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 11/25/2008
Fantastic Boat! I should never has sold my '06, I was an idiot for doing so. =(~
I can't say anything bad about this boat, not even its tendency to pearl under larger waves and swells. It's no biggie 'cause it just pops back up and you're on your way again.

I found the Tsunami 145 to track very well but turn nicely if you leaned it properly. It also had great stability and never made me feel like it was going to flip over on me. It's not the fastest boat on the water (I managed about 4.7 to 5.1 mph on my GPS) but it's fast enough and a lot faster than my friend's SOT's. It also has a ton of leg room, fully adjustable, Phase 3 seat (I can't say enough good things about that seat), and TONS of dry storage space.

All in all it was a really nice boat and I should have kept it .


I have a Duralite. Great boat…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/26/2008
I have a Duralite. Great boat only problem is no leg room due to foam support beam. I should have gotten the heavier version of this boat.

I thought I'd add some useful…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/16/2008
I thought I'd add some useful information to this thread rather than the typical review since there are so many already. I own a Tsunami 145 plastic kayak. Don't get me wrong, I really like this boat and rate it an 8 out of 10 because of the weight, its shape and speed (top speed of approximately 5 mph by GPS), all related to the roto-molded plastic construction. This is a great boat, just not the greatest boat.

What I can share with you is something I learned about the 145, something Wilderness Systems won’t tell us, its dry storage capacity. I wanted to know how much the bow and stern compartments would hold so I calculated their volume.

First I weighed the kayak on a doctor's office quality balance beam scale. My 145 weighed 59 lbs (ouch) without a rudder which I have on order. Next, I blocked one end of the kayak so one hatch was over the scale with the boat level and weighed it again. Then I filled the compartment with water and recorded the weight. I subtracted the empty balanced weight of the kayak from the water filled weight to obtain the weight of the water in the compartment. I did this for both ends of the boat.

Water weighs 8.34 lbs/gallon so I divided the water weight by 8.34 to determine the number of gallons per compartment. Then I converted gallons to liters, and gallons to cubic inches. The results are as follows:

Front compartment: 155 lbs of water, 18.61 gallons of water, 70.4 liters, 4299 cubic inches

Stern compartment: 210 lbs of water, 25.21 gallons of water, 95.4 liters, 5824 cubic inches

Total dry storage:, 166 liters, 10,123 cubic inches

That's the equivalent of two 5000 cubic inch backpacks worth of dry storage, more than enough space for a week's worth of camping gear and food using backpacking equipment. I sleep better just knowing my 145 holds 10,000 cubic inches of stuff and keeps it safe and dry.


Just got the yak last night…

Submitted by: paddler232880 on 9/12/2008
Just got the yak last night seems fine. New to kayaking have been in the that other boat for years. I got this yak based on my size 6'4" 270 and it seemed to be the only one to fit that was not a SOT. Hour paddle my feet fell asleep hope to figure this out. I was able to keep up with wife in a Necky and my buddy in an Ocean SOT with little effort. In fact had to slow and wait for them a few times. more to come hope to paddle more before the ice hits in Mich.

Great design and paddles well. Reason for the low score is poor…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/6/2008
Great design and paddles well.
Reason for the low score is poor quality of the bottom. New spring '08 and developed major ripples. Contacted dealer, he advised Wilderness Systems who did not follow up. Watch quality and poor warranty followup

I would rate the Wilderness…

Submitted by: paddler235835 on 12/31/2007
I would rate the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 Pro/rudder (fiberglass) as 9 out of 10.
I have had this kayak out on the rivers of South Dakota for the past 3 months now and it is one of my favorite kayaks to paddle. Both me (6’ 240 lbs) and my girlfriend (5’2” ...we won’t go there) find it has plenty of room and is just the right size to accommodate both of our needs. The rudder really adds to the experience, although some of my friends find that it tracks so well they don’t use the rudder.

This was my first fiberglass kayak, and boy what a difference. The composite boats seem to slice the water a bit better than the polyethylene ones do. They cost a bit more, but once you try a Fiberglass or Kevlar boats you will be hooked.

Things I like: Stability.... this kayak is a nice blend of speed & stability. Granted it’s not as quick as my W.S. Tempest 170 (FG), but then again it won’t roll on me either when I venture out on a cold water winter run in January. This is a kayak you can trust.

The Wilderness Systems Phase 3 seating system included is “Outstanding”. You can adjust the seat & back to find that perfect comfort zone for those long river runs.

Things I don’t like: Haven’t found it yet.

In summary... the Wilderness Systems Tsunami 145 Pro/rudder is an excellent all around kayak for beginners to intermediate paddlers. It is truly a joy to paddle & own.


It's been a year since I last…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 10/5/2007
It's been a year since I last submitted a review of this kayak. At that time I had only had the boat for about three months, and I was a total beginner. Now, with another year's paddling under my belt, I have modified my opinion(s) on a couple of issues that may be of value to others.

Let me start by saying that I still consider myself as being new to the sport/activity, so what I'm writing is still pretty basic. As to my opinion about the Tsunami 145, I've had enough experience with it and some others to write an "update."

First, I agree with many others who have written that this boat is slow. When I first bought it I wasn't concerned and/or didn't realize the difference between paddling this kayak and some others out there over a few hours' timespan because I didn't paddle with a group or actually take a three or four hour demo day. But my son recently bought a Tsunami 140 and the difference in speed and effort required to paddle that boat compared to the 145 is significant.

Out of the water, the 145 also feels considerably heavier (even though it's not), and more ungainly to handle when loading and unloading than the 140. (Both boats in the family are the basic roto-molded plastic ones.) Once you get it going, you can move at a good clip, but if you slow down or lose your momentum for any reason, getting back up to speed takes a good effort.

On the plus side, however, the overall stability, interior volume, and seating comfort--my main reasons for buying the 145--of this boat is excellent! I would also wish that the foot pedals/pegs for the rudder controls had more travel, though. (When shopping/demoing I found the footpegs on the rudderless boats had more forward travel adjustment than boats with rudders.)

Finally, my hatch covers have not given me any problems. The front hatches have NEVER leaked; and the rear has allowed a little bit of water in only a couple of times when I didn't realize I hadn't replaced the cover completely from the previous trip.

Overall, I'm still very satisfied with my purchase and know I'll still get a lot of use out of this boat before I'd "need" to move up to something longer and leaner (although I might "want" to do so sooner than later.)


I am not going to write a…

Submitted by: Bradshawm on 9/24/2007
I am not going to write a lengthy review because pretty much all the good and bad has been said. In Summary, the 145 is slower than the 140, very stable, tracks good even without a rudder, the hatches leak, and is, overall, a very good buy for the money, especially when it goes on sale.

What I want to address is the hatch covers. When I took my safety class, we used the 145 and the Tempest 170 with the same problems on both. Whether doing an assisted rescue, or a self rescue, it was very difficult to get back in the kayak without going over the top of the rear hatch, and invariable, the cover came off, collapsed, or the seal was broken, and on the next go around it leaked very heavily. I ended up including in my rescue, the step of replacing or re-sealing the hatch while laying on my stomach with my feet in the cockpit before I could turn around and slide into the cockpit. This alone makes it totally unsuited for serious touring of any kind, because if someone were to go over in rougher waters. It would be easy to swamp the back end and quite a chore to balance on the back trying to fix the hatch before securing oneself into the cockpit. If they were to fix this, I could probably give this kayak a much higher rating.


This is a great kayak. But…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/21/2007
This is a great kayak. But its lack of speed is sometimes a problem. As others have said here, it seems really slow. It gets going up to a fair speed, but then it hits a wall where I feel like I'm just pushing water in front of me rather than paddling. I thought it was me until I read the reviews here. I've been paddling it for several seasons now, and its helped me improve my technique. I just wish it would be faster when I paddle in groups.

Pros: extremely comfortable, stable in rough water, and great for easy touring and camping. I think the seating and thigh braces are excellent.

Cons: It's very hard to keep up to speed with others. That's the only drawback. Otherwise, I give it an excellent score.


I bought a plastic 14.5…

Submitted by: paddler232235 on 8/7/2007
I bought a plastic 14.5 Tsunami 3 months ago to step up from my 12.5 Perception Antiqua. After six years and many miles on that tugboat (I say that fondly) it was time to move up in class. I wanted something longer and faster that I could use on class 1-2 rivers. After 60+ hours paddling on lakes and bays of the Potomac, I couldn't be happier with my choice.

I am a big paddler 5'11/250 and the Tsunami fits me fine. Very stable and fast in comparison to my Perception. It tracks superbly. The writer of the previous review is right - this boat is built for larger paddlers and maybe my weight makes it move faster through the water.

Even though I have a rudder I haven't had any need to use it. Even in wind and 1-2 foot chop on a big deep inland lake, Mullet Lake in northern Michigan, I could keep on track simply by paddling technique. The boat cut across the top of the waves and I remained perfectly dry (no skirt). The Wilderness seating system is great. Comfortable and easy to adjust on the fly. I like the fact that there seems to be a bit more space behind the seat and the edge making it easier to reach back for water stowed behind the seat.

I'm looking forward to our annual 3 day trip next week on the James River in central Virginia and see how it handles in small rapids and some technical rock gardens.

Two minor complaints already noted in earlier reviews ... no bag in the small hatch and the rear seat adjustment slips. Been meaning to get a clip or pin to keep it in place.


We have four kayaks in the…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 8/2/2007
We have four kayaks in the family and this one is the most puzzling. One one hand, it is a fantastic knock-around kayak for camping and general sea-touring. It's really excellent for getting out on the ocean and learning how to handle conditions up to moderately choppy. Not really suited for major stuff, though we've felt as secure and stable in it than our two full-on sea kayaks.

The problem is this: it is really S L O W ! My wife has a smaller Tsunami and all of us can easily paddle that much faster than this 145. We've done some experimenting by loading it up and, sure enough, when we have lots of cargo in the compartments, especially up front, the 145 definitely picks up some cruising speed, though still pretty pokey in comparison to other kayaks.

My thought is that this is really a kayak for a very large or heavy person... not average or smaller people. For an average sized paddler, I think the 140 or the 160 would be a much faster and more appropriate boat. The difference is striking. So if you are a big guy, take a look. Otherwise think smaller... or longer.


This is my first Kayak. I…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/4/2007
This is my first Kayak. I bought it for the Missouri Ultra Marathon race in July 2007. See Rivermiles.com for details on the 340 mile race in 100 hours on the Missouri river. I am a very large paddler 285# and this Kayak holds me with plenty of waterline left to spare. It is very stable. To me it is very fast and easy to get up to speed and stay there, but again it is my first one and I have only limited canoe paddling experience. I got mine with a rudder and am very glad that I did. I have owned it for 3 months and been out in it 8 times for 2-3 hour paddles so far. The seat is very comfortable and seems well made. It can be raised or lowered easily while underway with no problem. The rear day hatch as noted by others is not separate from the main rear hatch which is really not a major problem but would be nice if it was. I have had no leakage in my hatches or bulkheads and have fought some very big waves in this thing. I paddled with a Carolina Perception and felt that it was equal to it in speed and handling.

Bought this boat last summer…

Submitted by: rnsparky on 3/28/2007
Bought this boat last summer after having an OT Adventure 139. Pros - I like the smaller cockpit and higher deck, much better in choppy conditions. Boat tracks good, turns fairly well. Ample amount of storage. Cons - Rear Day Hatch should have its own pouch (similar to that on old Pungos) or bulkhead, so smaller items can easily be found. I think the Phase 3 seat is generally poorly constructed and I'm concerned about the durability of the various cords. Boat is not fast for going A to B as quick as possible, but adequate for easy crusing and relaxing paddles.

An updated review...and a…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 10/2/2006
An updated review...and a mystery about this kayak. My better half has a Tsunami 140 w/ Rudder. Just 6 inches shorter. She likes it a lot.

We have both been noticing that the 140 seems noticably faster than the 145. My wife just cruises in the 140...and seems to work a lot harder in the 145. Yeah, I know, that doesn't make sense...the 145 should logically have more inherent speed. We thought it might be just us...but then we had some friends do a comparison, and they came away with an even stronger impression in favor of the 140 for speed. Are we ALL nuts? Anyone else notice this?


Now that I've had my Tsunami…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/15/2006
Now that I've had my Tsunami 145 w/rudder for 3 months--it's my first boat and I'm absolutely a beginner!--I must say that I'm very happy with my choice.

Physically, I'm 6 ft. tall, weigh 190 lbs., and in my late 50's. I had rented several different recreational and "light/touring" boats and kept coming back to this one mainly because of it's interior space, great comfortable seat; and for it's overall stability that really instills confidence in a beginner.

I had rented and paddled Tsunamis without rudders, but when it came time to actually make a purchase, the two closest dealers only had ruddered boats in stock. I am happy I got the rudder, though, as it's been useful in the tidal water I paddle in. (The salt water rivers and bays near the ocean in NJ usually are choppy and/or full of power boat wakes.)

I must agree with the previous reviewer's statement that this kayak is on the slow slide and really takes some extra effort to keep up with people in faster boats, but the comfort level afforded by it partially makes up for the lack of speed. (My wife bought a Hobie pedal-drive that really flies across the water, so trying to keep up with that one can be a real effort!)

To sum up, at this point, I'm very happy with the Tsunami overall, and would recommend it to a beginner or mid-level skilled paddler who wants a stable, comfortable kayak with room to spare for a paddler and his/her stuff. I think this boat is a much smarter buy for a beginner than something like a Pungo, for example, because there's room to "grow" into the boat as your paddling skills improve and you want to use the boat for longer trips, etc.

While I may grow out of this boat in the future--though I doubt I would ever want to do anything I couldn't do in this kayak--it would not be as soon as I would outgrow a so-called recreational boat, so therefore I feel you get more bang for your buck out of the Tsunami.


A updated review of the…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/14/2006
A updated review of the Tsunami 145 w/ Rudder - now at 2 seasons experience.

First a caveat: I believe that my skills and potential have now outgrown this wonderful kayak. I'm essentially still a learner but I routinely paddle with an enthusiastic band of people who are nearly all intermediate/experts in real touring sea kayaks. It's all I can do to just keep up with them. I can handle wet exits and self/assisted reentries with great ease...but rolling the Tsunami with its wide beam and high seatback is an exercise in high comedy for my compatriots.

I'm now looking to move up to a genuine tourer with some speed and big-water capability. The WS Tempest 170 is high on the list...along with a few from the Necky, Eddyline, P&H, Impex, and Nigel Dennis lines. That said, I think the WS Tsunami 145 is a remarkable kayak, especially for those who just want to enjoy the experience and are not really interested in flying from point to point performing all sorts of cool moves in crazy water.

The pros: Very stable...WS knows what it is doing with the hull design. Tracks well. With the rudder down it goes straight as an arrow through chop, following seas, and angular currents. You won't find a more comfortable seating setup anywhere. Its amazing. Dials right in to your comfort zone. Tons of room and storage. We've been camping for days out of this thing. Very safe and easy to reenter with a paddle float if it goes over.

Cons: Not a true sea kayak or tourer designed for speed. Not a flaw...but you should know that of this inherent limitation. Seatback is very high for comfort...but it gets in the way of reentry and especially rolls. Again, that's not the purpose of this kayak...but you should know about it. Hatches leak a little if not put on very carefully. Need to pay attention when sealing. Hull design is quite high --tends to catch a lot of wind. It moves along, but the relatively rounded bow entry point impedes speed. On the water, the top speed is obviously lower than genuine touring kayaks. That stable bow design gets wet. Where refined sea kayaks just cut through things, the Tsunami 145 creates some splash. All in all a fine light touring kayak...probably the best out there. If that's what you want, this is probably the kayak of choice.


Update to previous review. I…

Submitted by: paddler231644 on 6/28/2006
Update to previous review. I going to raise the Tsunami to an 8.5.

After paddling it hundreds of miles in lakes, rivers, and choppy bays, as well as in the Texas Water Safari, I think I've go a pretty good feel for what this boat is all about.

Speed - I was still hoping it would be faster, but the flat water hull limit is around 5mph. I can get it going faster with a lot of effort, but since figuring out that the Tsunami doesn't really want to go any faster, I've learned to paddle just hard enough to keep it at 5mph and conserve energy over long distances. 5mph isn't bad for a recreational kayak.

Stability - very good. I was able to take a more aggressive line through some junky parts of the river, and even run a few rapids that other boats had to portage. The stability gives you confidence in big water too. Haven't had it out on the open ocean, but it handled fine in a choppy bay, and in the wakes of all the ski boats when paddling in the local lake.

Manueverability - It wasn't just a first impression, this boat prefers to go straight. My big concern was whether I could manuever in current. I was relieved to find that I could stay out of trouble fairly easily, even without a rudder. I was able to 'thread the needle' in some pretty nasty spots.

Comfort - lots of adjustability, and easy to change foot rest positions and seat height/tilt, even as you're paddling along. Definitely made the miles go by easier. I've gotten a lot better and jumping in and out, but the cockpit is still a bit tight for someone 6', 180lbs.

Toughness - I have a Duralite, which definitely helps the weight, but does make the sides feel flimsier. That said, I bounced my Tsunami off of every log and rock in central Texas, and it is holding up nicely. If I had been paddling fiberglass or kevlar in this recent race, I'd be looking at some expensive repairs right now.

Gripes - The hatch covers could be a bit tighter, and the strap that controls seatback angle keeps slipping. The plastic buckle needs some teeth. I'm holding it in position with a safety pin (which defeats the point of having adjustability). One of the seat straps also ripped from its attach point when I leaned back hard against the seat. I was able to fix it, but I think they should have had a tough connect point, maybe with a grommet.


Forget about the Rating, here…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/25/2006
Forget about the Rating, here is what I like and dislike about this boat.

Me: Paddling for two years and also own a Impex Assateague. Larger paddler: 6' 6", 210 lb, size 12.5 shoes. I bought a demo Tsunami 145 (Model year 2005) with rudder a few months ago. Have had it on slow moving rivers/creeks, class II+ whitewater/fast river water and a big lake. I bought for it's initial stability for photography and as a boat for my wife, who doesn't paddle a lot, so we can go together.


Good stable boat in slow water and fast water. Paddles straight easily (even without rudder). Turns okay (w/o rudder) with some lean and sweep stroke. Accommodates Big Feet and Long Legs. I can put my 36" legs on the footbraces, but I can not use the rudder as the foot braces are at their limit. If you have 35" legs or shorter, you should have no problem. Very gernerous cockpit to get in and out. Everyone should be able to get in and out easily.

Decent speed for a wide body. Not a speedy demo, but not a real slug either. My Assateque is faster and quicker to accelerate, but it is 3 feet longer and two inches narrower. Three hatches for storage. Good for a overnighter in sheltered water. Super comfy seat (Phase 3) with lots of adjustments.


Has three hatches, but the day hatch and the rear hatch are not separated by a bulkhead. Slow, but then again, if you are looking for speed, you shouldn't be looking at this boat. Large volume in the thigh area. High deck (16"). Foam bulk heads instead of ABS. High seatback would make layback rolls problematic. Typical persons buying this boat aren't looking to roll it often though.

I wouldn't bring this out into the big ocean unless it was a super calm day and I was staying close to shore. It handles wind okay (little weather cocking w/o rudder), but is slow and if conditions change for the worst, it could be a tough ride.

So far I like this for what I want it to do. It has performed admireably. I was thinking of trading up to a Tsunmi 160 or 165 when I can get one as a used/demo for a little more speed and a little more versatility.


6'0, 185lbs, paddle mostly…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 4/17/2006
6'0, 185lbs, paddle mostly lakes and rivers in Central Texas, including some marathon canoe races.

I moved up from an Old Town Loon 138 to a Tsunami 145 in Duralite. I like the Tsunami, particularly the light weight of the Duralite. It is 13lbs less than the Loon, despite being a bit longer. There are a few reasons I'm giving it a 7 (so far).

1. I thought it would be faster. My first time out on an 11 mile flat water course , I matched my previous best time in the Loon. My second time out, I knocked 5min off. I was hoping to be 15-20min faster. Maybe my paddling style is still dialed in for the Loon, but after a few trips out, it is clear I'm not getting an automatic speed up over the wider, shorter, heavier Loon.

2. I thought it would be more comfortable. The phase 3 seat is really nice, but between the narrower cockpit of the Tsunami, and the 'traction' the phase 3 cushion has on my posterior, there is less opportunity to shift and change position. For anyone moving up from a Loon, Pungo, or equivalent rec kayak, it might not be as comfortable as you'd expect. I'm sure it is way more comfortable than the plastic bucket seats with no back rest of many touring kayaks.

3. I thought it would turn easier. The Tsunami tracks nicely, but it doesn't turn willingly. I test paddled one with a rudder, but decided I could live without it. I'll have to see what happens when I get on a river, but my impression from the lakes is the rudder might not have been a bad idea.

4. Ease of entry. This isn't a tippy boat, but the cockpit is small enough that if you're 6', you won't be able to just jump in and out. If you paddle in places with a lot of low water than requires walking the boat over a gravel bar or shoal, you'll need to practice your mount/dismount. Might not be the best choice if your primary use is fishing.

Positives: stability is good, even coming from a 30" wide Loon. Storage hatches are really nice. Good space behind the seat for water jugs, etc. Easy adjustment of the foot braces, seat back height, seat tilt, etc. Cockpit is small enough to keep out paddle drip and cut back on some of the sun, large enough to provide ventillation. I don't think I'll need a full or half skirt unless I start taking it out into the Gulf.

I'm going to use the Tsunami in the Texas Water Safari in June (260 miles, rivers, small lakes behind the dams, and a crossing of San Antonio Bay). Will add more comments after that.


We have two WS Tsunami 145's…

Submitted by: mctec on 3/30/2006
We have two WS Tsunami 145's with rudders. Red and Orange for high visibility. Before purchasing these, we'd been kayaking on SOTs in Hawaii and in traditional yaks like these at home here in New England. We bought these on the recommendation of our son (who worked at a major outdoor equipment retailer, and could have gotten similar discounts on Perceptions, Esky's, P&H, and a whole range of major brands on special order.) His reasoning has stood the test of experience:

1) They are remarkably stable even in the ocean chop we sometimes find ourselves. Haven't been tossed yet (Yeah, I've come close....)

2) The move fairly easily -- speedy enough for us, even if it takes a little effort to keep up with skinnier, composite hulled craft. They hold their own.

3) They are amazingly roomy -- tons of room and storage for camping. With the right equipment we can head out for up to a week or so. On overnights, we can pack everything but the car.

3) The hull is quite rigid for a poly design. I don't know what the previous poster is talking about when he or she says that he found the hulls "soft." Doesn't make sense or match my comparisons at all. These yaks track well and make a sleek imprint on the water...and did I mention that they seem quite speedy...

4)As noted by nearly every other poster, the Wilderness Systems seating design is the most comfortable and adjustable available. It's a huge advantage over the other brands. I particularly like the thigh supports and the ability to fit my very average 5'9 170 Lb body perfectly to the roomy cockpit. It provides the best "hip" response of any seating system I've tried, and I simply do not get lower body fatigue when I'm out.

Negative issues are minor.

1)Yeah, the standard high-quality poly hull is a tad weighty. Hasn't been a problem for me to hoist up on top of my van though. (Built up the lower back and biceps last summer....)

2)The rudder foot controls can be a little finicky - you have to find the sweet spot for positioning them to your legs in order to keep them them gliding smoothly. Once you get used to it, it's like magic, however.

This isn't a true sea kayak...and its not meant to be. That said, its taken me comfortably and safely out on the cold, open ocean in variety of conditions...and it moves like a high performance tourer in the bays and estuaries.

Verdict: outstanding for its intended light-touring purposes, quite functional for some heavy touring gigs, and simple fun to paddle.


I LOVE this boat. Speed,…

Submitted by: lmv19470 on 12/20/2005
I LOVE this boat. Speed, tracking are excellent (with no rudder) and absolutely the most comfortable seating system I have ever sat in. The boat is poly and very durable. The only drawback is the weight. It is a bit heavy. My next wilderness system will be the lightweight poly (14 lbs less).

I have had my Tsunami for…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 10/3/2005
I have had my Tsunami for about 5 months now, I can not tell how the boat will handle because the bottom of the boat is so soft it changes each time I use it. The factory says it is a defective boat but I have seen other Tsunami's like it. If you transport the boat right side up the bottom of the boat caves in and stays that way, it won't support its own weight. I tried to transport the boat upside down and this helps but the bottom still caves in while the boat is being loaded. Perception-Wilderness Systems says they will ship me a new boat but the can not say when, I have been waiting 3 Months so far. The Bulkheads are leaking badly (We All Know How Dangerous That Is). So this Saturday I will spend my day removing and re installing the bulkheads (lucky I know how). I give this boat a 2 because it still floats, so-far.

My son and I both have…

Submitted by: dhuggins on 10/3/2005
My son and I both have Tsunami 145 Gen2 kayaks that we got in August. My son is 6'2" appx 200lbs and I'm 5'11" and appx 230lbs and feel real comfortable in the cockpit. No problem with room.

They seem to be fairly quick and track real well even without using the rudder. We've been out in heavy wind conditions that kicked up 1-2 foot swells and white caps. The Tsunamis were very stable and nimble. They have great initial and secondary stability.

The Tsunami's 14.5' length makes it easier to navigate the smaller streams we like to go on as well.

The deck rigging is real handy. I really like the paddle bungee on the left side of the cockpit. The hatch covers seem to do their job well. But I've had a little water get into my rear hatch. A little of the right kind of caulk applied to the bulkhead should take care of that. I wish WS would separate the day hatch from the main hatch / storage in the stern. Maybe they'll make a retro-fit kit for that at some point. Even so, there is room behind the seat for water bottles etc and plenty of room in the bow and stern hatches for gear and food for multi day trips and an overall weight capacity of around 500lbs according to WS.

We love the Phase3 seating - had to mention that. Hours in the seat and no complaints.

Living near Chattanooga, TN, we have a lot of choices of places to paddle. We are planning on paddling the 40/50 mile Tennessee River’s BlueWay soon.


My wife and I rented a pair…

Submitted by: paddler231200 on 8/23/2005
My wife and I rented a pair of these on the Sunshine Coast for a quick paddle. She took the 140, I took the larger 145, which I had been considering buying.

The boat felt great. The Phase 3 seats are fantastic, particularly the ability to raise and lower the backrest. I'm not sure why other kayak companies don't add this feature. My back almost always aches after paddling but I felt great after with this boat.

Stability felt great. We had the rudders down most of the time, so no problems with tracking and turning. One feature I like was the tabs on the deck line that lowers the rudder. I was surprised at how well the boat moved into the wind, given the relatively high deck.

Still, the 145 felt like a "fat man's boat" (as it was once described to me) and even at 6'0, 210 lbs, the cockpit seemed way too loose.

Ultimately, I’m going to bypass the Tsunami and move up the to the Capehorn 170. I'm pretty sold on WS and Phase III. I just don't want a 14 ft boat, but if I did, I would seriously consider the 140.