Read reviews for the Gradient by Dagger as submitted by your fellow paddlers.
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Sweet boat, awesome hole puncher. I will pick the hardest line possible and it tracks very well. Very dependable. I know how its going to react in any condition. I love how rock solid the plastic is in this kayak. Yo could literally pull this thing behind a truck and not do any damage. Only down fall is the fact people make the "keepin it old school" when you pull up to the river.
This was my first boat and...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 6/30/2003
This was my first boat and it has served well. As with all boats 50% of its performance depends on the paddler so this is just my opinion. I learned everything in this boat. I learned to roll in March of 03 (actually hand rolled first). Now its the end of June and I have at least one and possibly 2 more first descents on class IV - V creeks with the Gradient. Im starting to see its limitations now as side surfing is the most playful you can get with this boat. (S:6 is on the way) However I do feel that this is a good river running boat, creeker, and especially water fall machine. It has good speed and tracking is good after you get the feel for it. Its extremly tough. I abuse this boat daily (I live on the banks of the New River)and it has held up great. It took a 25ft drop onto a rock and it came out unscathed (unlike me). As stated by others on this forum tracking could be better in big water, but I like the manueverablity the tradeoff gives this boat. You can make a move in half a stroke. The verdict: I believe in the advancement of technolgy and there are certainly better boats out there now, but if you are low on funds and somebody is selling this boat for 2 or $300 then you wont be dissapointed.
Good boat for some things,...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 5/21/2003
Good boat for some things, not good for others. This boat performs on low volume, steep runs. In big water, you're going to get spanked. Hard. Ran the Upper Animas as 4000 CFS and just got bitch slapped. Spent the whole day working to get the nose pointed back downstream. Not that the Animas doesn't knock everyone around, but I was working much harder than the others on my trip. Sold it and picked up a Skreem.
I've only had this boat a...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 4/6/1999
I've only had this boat a few months but I really enjoy it. I haven't had a chance to try it on Jones or Flatrock Creek but I have paddled Little River Canyon in it at a very technical level and Short Creek also. It does feel like my old Freefall in some ways but I like the shorter length and the abs center wall. I paddled a rockit before it and it has almost as much room as my german boat does. It seems to be as fast as my rockit and freefall were and it definitely turns quicker. That high volume bow won't ever dive but this big boat doesn't surf that well. I would like to see one of these major companies like perception, dagger, or prijon build a kayak in the eight foot range like the 240.
After paddling this kayak...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 12/21/1998
After paddling this kayak for almost a year now, I am still very pleased with it's performance. I Go to all of the Demo Days in my area to try out new kayaks. The Gradient is still on top for me. I stayed on the Little Pigeon, Little River, the Tellico and the West Prong in Gatlinburg this past summer. I was pleased with the menuverability of this kayak. It got me into alot of micro-eddies with no problems. It is a change from Daggers Freefall though. It is shorter and able to fit into much more tighter areas on small creeks. I was able to go into areas that my friends Freefall would not go, and get out of it also. It is a safe boat with three broach pins placed close by. The way the bow is designed makes it easier and safer to get out of in case of pinning; there is an I-beam designed into the kayak. The new EXL material is strong and resistant. I am pleased with this boat overall. I have lived in this boat over the past year and have no complaints at all. It is worth your money!
Gave the boat try. It...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 11/16/1998
Gave the boat try. It really didn't live up to my expectations. I've been been paddling for along time (going on 8 years) and this boat isn't much of a step from the old Dagger Freefall. Personally I think Dagger missed the boat on this one and should have followed the lead of Wavesport or Riot and gone with some new technology. Pretty much just the smae old, same old.
This is the best...
Submitted by:Anonymouson 9/3/1998
This is the best Steep-Creeking boat around. I have had the opportunity to live and paddle in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee this summer and can truthfully say, Buy this boat! It is great for tight turns; when you are reconsidering those BIG waterfalls. The length was right as far as tight and technical runs go. Ten foot drops where other kayaks were pinning vertically; I came out of. The front end seeks the air when submerged. I have no complaints about this boat. This is my fourth kayak, so I know what I am saying.