Good all around boat for bouncy water. A bit more playful, but also a bit faster, than the Dagger Alchemy line it replaced.
Sizing, the Stratos 14.5Sfalls between the Alchemy S and Alchemy L. I am 6' and 215lbs and fit the Stratos S. It fits nicely. The Stratos 14.5L required some paddling at the thigh braces to get a decent grip for rolling.
Have owned one for over a year now. Good, playful boat. Comfortable seats with lots of adjustment.
Hatches have remained watertight on mine, but others have complained about hatches leaking some (especially large rear hatch) on theirs.
This is a large volume boat. As compared to the Alchemy 14.0L which it replaced, it is a much roomier boat (and the Alchemy was not a small boat).
I wish the rear bulkhead was closer to the back of the combing. If you wet exit and go to drain the boat by lifting bow and flipping upright, that area will catch a lot of water.
The Alchemy is good for a beginner. has good primary stability, largish cockpit opening (but not so large you can;t get a good skirt to seal it). But the boat also works well for advanced paddlers (this boat is commonly paddled by members of Neptune's Rangers Ocean Whitewater Team - http://neptunesrangers.com/).
One downside is the large hatch on the back is know to leak, and in some cases pop off under extreme pressures (wave breaking over back deck or the like). Dagger used to have a gasket that could be added to seal the leak, and straps can be added that go over the hatch to hold it on. Float bags in the hatch are also a good idea if you are using the boat in conditions.
Oh, I replaced my first boat due to general wear, but also because the bulkheads were leaking. I heard that in 2014 or so, they changed how they attached the bulkheads which would make them less prone to leaking. So far so good on the new one (2+ years of heavy use).