Kayaking is for Everyone: Find the Right Kayak for You
There are lots of choices for big kayaks that will accommodate larger paddlers. Many sit on top kayaks have a maximum weight capacity of 250 plus pounds with some kayaks even allowing for paddlers over 300 pounds.
The Sport of Kayaking is one of the fastest growing market segments in the United States, and as our friends and neighbors take to the waterways to explore the natural beauty that our oceans, lakes, rivers, bays, and estuaries provide, some of us feel like we are left standing on the shoreline. We look at the nifty, nimble, sleek, slender, little kayaks paddled by our friends and believe that they will not hold us. We wonder: Do they make kayaks for people like me? Can a kayak hold someone over 250 plus or 300 plus pounds? Are XL sized kayaks more expensive? The short answer is that there are kayaks for people like us, and they can be purchased for affordable prices online.
Popular Kayak Brands like Emotion Kayaks and Ocean Kayak have released fantastic big kayaks like the Renegade XT Kayak, Spitfire 9 Kayak, the Big Yak, or the Peekaboo Kayak that accommodate larger paddlers and still provide an enjoyable experience with the kayak on and off the water. We will take a look at some things to consider when purchasing a big kayak and explore some affordable XL sized kayaks for heavier paddlers.
Top 2 Choices for Big Paddlers - Perception Sport Pescador Kayaks
Other Big Kayaks to Consider - Some Popular Big Kayaks
If you're looking Kayaks for People over 250 Pounds, consider these three popular kayaks that can accommodate maximum capacities of 250+ Pounds.
Emotion Kayaks Introduces the Renegade
Can a Kayak Hold My Weight?
Consider More than Just the Max Capacity
When you start researching kayaks, you will see that the longer a kayak is, the more weight it can bear. However, you may also find that long kayaks are often cumbersome and make it hard to get your kayak from your home to the waterway. So, there are some great options for heavier paddlers that come in under 12 feet long, and even under 10 feet long. For example, the Big Yak from Ocean Kayak is a 9'8" Kayak that accommodates paddlers between 250-300 pounds depending on water conditions. In 2012 Emotion Kayaks released two kayaks for heaver paddlers that come in at 10 feet or shorter. The Emotion Renegade XT is a 10 foot kayak that can hold kayakers who are up to 325 pounds in weight. The Emotion Spitfire 9 is a 9' kayak that supports paddlers and gear weights up to 350 pounds.
There are lots of kayaks available for heavier paddlers, and you will see many of them throughout this page.
Tell Us What You Think
Tell Us What You Think
Understand the Max Capacity of Your Kayak
Every Kayak will have a "Max Capacity" or similar line item that describes the maximum amount of weight the kayak can hold in optimum water conditions. Remember to consider that this maximum weight also includes any gear or equipment that you might bring with you on the kayak for a day trip or weekend getaway. To be safe, it is recommended that paddlers allow for 50-75 pounds of additional load before that max capacity of the boat is reached.
Old Town Vapor 10 Angler - Sit Inside Fishing Kayak with 300+ Pound Capacity
The Old Town Vapor 10 Angler is one of the best value options for sit inside kayaks. Standard features that include double fishing rod mounts behind the large cockpit, and included anchor system, padded seat, and adjustable foot braces make the Old Town Vapor 10 Angler edition kayak an awesome buy at any price. However, the fact that this bundle comes in at less than $500 make it very, very hard to resist. Unlike sit on top kayaks, sit inside kayaks provide protection from the sun and cold water which make them a more practical option for some paddlers. With that said, the Vapor 10 can be used pretty much anywhere.
Length: 10' / 3 m
Cockpit: 19.5" x 48"
Deck Height: 16.75"
Weight: 44 lbs
Max Capacity: 275-325 lbs
Image Credit: Old Town Press Room
9 to 10 Foot Kayaks for Paddlers 250+ Pounds
There are several 9 to 10 foot kayaks available for paddlers over 250+ pounds. Here are a few to consider.
10 to 11 Foot Kayaks for People Over 300+ Pounds
11 to 12 Foot Kayaks for Large Paddlers
Big Kayaks over 12 Feet Long - Max Weight Capacity 350+ Pounds
Are Big Kayaks only for Big People?
Paul Levy from United Kingdom on August 27, 2015:
Excellent advice in this hub, I used to be a frequent kayaker - these days I prefer boats, yachts etc and take my time to advise those interested in water vehicles
jenny on October 31, 2014:
Any advice on a kayak that is sit in for 280lbs weight but a short one with backrest sold in uk? Thank you
topclimb lm on May 28, 2014:
I like a bigger kayak. They feel more stable in the water to me. Great lens!
longlakelifestyle on August 19, 2013:
I confess. I'm nervous when I ride kayaks with big people.
blestman lm on June 25, 2013:
I am wary about weight limits but my wife and I bought two kayaks as an anniversary gift for ourselves. We love them
anonymous on April 16, 2013:
You did not mention the Wilderness Ride 115 and 135. Both are rated at over 500 lbs. I own a 135 and it does well with my 300+ weight.
geosum on April 09, 2013:
Nice lens. I used to be over 250 lbs and worried about weight limits. Now approaching 180 lbs....
Michelllle on April 03, 2013:
I love Kayaks that have room for a large dog. ; )
anonymous on March 05, 2013:
wilderness systems tsunami 145 - sit in kayak. great for xl paddlers. excellent choice for day trips and multi day trips. poly makes it a bit heavy to lift but it handles great and is an excellent craft.
galant (author) on May 26, 2012:
@galant: A little shorter option is the Emotion AdvantEdge Kayak here. This kayak is 12'9" with a max weight capacity of 29". The cockpit on this kayak is 22.5" wide and 50.75" long.
galant (author) on May 26, 2012:
@anonymous: Look at the Old Town Cayuga 146 here. This is a 14'6" Sit Inside Kayak that has a weight capacity of 275-320 pounds. Keep in minde that the cockpit is 15" Wide and 32" long.
anonymous on May 26, 2012:
What about sit in kayaks for big people? I don't like sit on tops. I have a 12' perception prodigy and now want one suitable for touring, big water or longer distance. Over 14-15 feet, but for a person over 250 lbs?