Read reviews for the Cortez 17.5 by Dagger as submitted by your fellow paddlers.
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I still own a 2003 Dagger Cortez composite kayak, and still paddle it very often. I have grown to love it's responsiveness and liveliness, and feel it is one of the faster and better touring kayaks Dagger has ever produced. I still don't know why Dagger quit producing this composite model. I have never used the rudder system on the kayak as it tracks very straight, even on windy days. I would rate this kayak a 10, but I do not believe there is a kayak that could meet all requirements, even though this one has met most of mine!
When I 1st bought the...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 12/21/2006
When I 1st bought the Dagger Cortez 17.5 I thought I made a mistake. Too unstable for the choppy waters of the Great South Bay L.I.. Actually a little time was neccessary to grow from the stability offered by my Looksha IV to the Cortez. It actually has good secondary stability and once trusted is quite stable. It also caused me to learn to roll proficiently, and I thank it! At present I'm flying along doing 6 miles in 1 hr to 1 1/2! and rolling to cool off in early winter. It's a great craft once you have some time under your belt (skirt?) and have been enjoying my short workouts.
Ignore the number. I tried the Cortez out at a demo day, slight breeze, little waves. When the rep. asked if I had a roll,,,he was serious. This is an all out racing kayak hiding as a "sea kayak", one caveat, I'm not a racer but have been paddling awhile. I suspect few people will have the horsepower to make use of the design but those animals familiar with 18" wide surf-skis will feel right at home. This is one of those anomalous boats like the LookshaII, but this one seems to make more sense from what I've seen of racing hulls, shallow arch bottom with v'd sides, minimal overhangs. Not sure if the rudder is the best rudder for a racing boat. This is "out in the ozone" territory for the average paddler but "in the ballpark" for folks that can fly on the water.