More duck hunting enthusiasts than ever are realizing the distinct advantages offered by a kayak over larger duck boats and other watercraft. The low profile helps duck hunters better hide from wary birds in public areas heavily pressured by other waterfowlers. At the same time, these small boats can get into shallow water where a larger duck boat would simply run aground. There are also the obvious benefits of lower or non-existent registration fees, and the kayak taking up less storage space in your garage or barn.
The other nice thing about making the switch to a kayak for waterfowl is the multi-season use you can get out of it. Most hunting kayaks readily double as a fishing kayak in the warmer months. They can also be used for casual paddling excursions during the warmer months of the year, giving you even more bang for your buck. With all that in mind, let's have a look at our picks for the five best duck hunting kayaks and canoes on the market right now.
The Best Canoe/Kayak Hybrid
Top Pick: Old Town Discovery Solo 119 ($999)
The versatility of the Old Town Discovery Solo 119 is off the charts. Think of a canoe that tracks as well as a kayak, and that's what you get with the Solo. It comes in at 11 feet, nine inches, and has a 354-pound total weight capacity, yet only weighs 56 pounds, making it easy to transport on a vehicle roof. While it paddles like a kayak, it has the storage capabilities of the best canoes, giving plenty of room for waterfowl decoys, a hunting blind, waders, and more. It has a cushy kayak-style seat, multiple fishing rod holders for anglers, adjustable foot braces, padded armrests, and even shotgun shell ammo holders. This one hunting boat will cover all your kayaking, hunting, and fishing adventures all year-round.
Old Town Discovery 119 Canoe
The Easiest For Mounting a Blind
Top Pick: Ascend H12 Hybrid Sit-In Kayak ($900)
This kayak is a tad heavy at 76 pounds. However, it is built specifically for stability while fishing, which means it is a good option for hunters too. This kayak is 12 feet long and can handle a payload of 450 pounds. This makes it a good option for larger duck hunters. It has all the features you would expect of a fishing kayak, flush mounted rod holders, adjustable foot braces, and accessory rails. However, this one can easily be modified to fit a small duck blind thanks to the wide, flat deck areas. There are also multiple large storage areas. The one in the bow is a hard compartment with a bungee hold down system while the stern is open with an adjustable mesh cover. Perfect for hauling decoys.
Ascend H12 Hybrid Sit-In Kayak
The Most Open Deck Space
Top Pick: Nucanoe Frontier ($1,700)
This is another hybrid-style kayak that combines a lot of the best features of kayaks and canoes into one package that is perfect for any duck hunt. This one is 12 feet long and weighs 80 pounds. This one has more stability than most seasoned paddlers may be used to thanks to the 41-inch width. We dig the versatility of this one since you can add a second seat and effectively turn it into a tandem kayak for two people. The open deck design means there is plenty of space to haul a dozen decoys or more. This thing can handle a whopping 650 pounds of weight! That means lots of room for extra hunting gear! We like this one for anyone who likes big decoy spreads. You can also easily attach either an outboard or trolling motor to the transom. There is also an option for a pivot drive pedal system for hands free operation. The camo color option is perfect for waterfowl hunters. Just grab some gear and get hunting. The only real downside we see with this one is that dry storage is lacking, so you will want to invest in some dry bags.
NuCanoe Frontier 12 Kayak
An Excellent Sit-On-Top Option
Top Pick: Lost Creek Angler 14 ($2,000)
This is a good option for hunters who prefer sit-on-top kayaks. This one is 14 feet long, yet only weighs 65 pounds. It has a 470-pound total weight capacity, which should help you haul all that gear with ease. The Impulse Drive pedal system lets you sneak into your spot silently in the early morning hours. This is a fishing kayak, so you get the bonus of using this in the off-season. It has four flush-mounted rod holders for that. We added this one to the list because of the spacious deck that is going to give you plenty of space for decoys and blind gear. Plus it already comes in a camo pattern to match all your hunting gear. This kayak also has YakAttack accessory tracks ready to add a bevy of gadgets to help make your hunting and fishing exploits more organized and fun.
Lost Creek Angler 14
The Best Canoe Option
Top Pick: Old Town Saranac 146 Canoe ($899)
This is our top pick for hunting canoes. This simple style will get you and your buddy there and back again with all your gear in tow. Old Town canoes have an excellent reputation for being extremely stable. This one is 14 feet, six inches long and weighs 79 pounds. It can handle a maximum load between 700 and 750 pounds. So, there is plenty of room for all your gear. As a bonus it has excellent padded seats and built-in cup holders. This would be a great option for a paddle trip or river fishing trip during the summer months while you are dreaming of wingshooting too. This canoe tracks like a dream no matter if you have one or two people onboard.
Old Town Saranac 146 Canoe
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