Submitted by: Anonymous on 8/12/2011
I was immediately sold on the Pilgrim Expedition with its fit as I had been looking for an expedition capable boat that fitted me well for a year plus, the thigh grips on the cockpit and knee bumps fit like a glove. The cockpit is not quite wide enough to raise both knees at once but I see that as a good point. The seat with its foam back block which looks suspect at first is ingenious, I ordered it with an additional back band but removed it as it was not necessary. The standard bulkhead was fine for me and just holds a five litre water container jammed behind it and the foot pegs on trips, the pegs themselves are solid and not the annoying sort that have levers and flex, I have the pegs set to one off their lengthiest setting.
The kayak pretty much rolls itself the low back deck assisting greatly, it almost feels like cheating using it for Greenland rolls, the fitting really is perfect.
The Pilgrim Expedition is fast and although about the narrowest kayak I've seen on the go it holds a ridiculous quantity of stuff, when traveling with others you may find yourself carrying the bulk of the kit! It can be a bit of a slammer in some seas, still trying to get to the bottom of this. As would be expected it does not manoeuvre anywhere near as well as the shorter Pilgrim, edging is slow going and I find myself using the skeg a fair bit more than I used to but it's not totally reliant upon it as other kayaks are. As it says on the tin, this kayak is an expedition/multi-day job and needs to be loaded; it is horrible in strong winds if not.
The main problem I have had with it is regarding some faults. The first boat had to be returned due to a serious defect, the second has to be repaired due to a less serious defect. I would be weary about buying another boat from this manufacturer as a result, but to be fair they sorted the problems without question, it just leaves a bad taste and confirmed what the head shakers said when I announced I was getting a SKUK kayak.
The other niggles are as follows: