The Coolest Kayak Ever
August 15, 2003 11:54 AM   Subscribe

See Through Kayak This has got to be the most excellent Wonder Woman-arific kayak ever created. Only thing I can see that's bad about it is if someone swims up underneath then they'd see your fat ass mashed against the bottom and might just die laughing. Or maybe the fish would die laughing? Doesn't matter though, I still want one!
posted by fenriq (20 comments total)
Pretty. The fish are spared most horrific sights due to the seat it would appear.

Nothing beats swimming though...
posted by fvw at 12:00 PM on August 15, 2003

does it have no top? is that a kayak or a canoe? what's the difference? i thought kayaks had a top to them with a hole that you sat in.
posted by luriete at 12:13 PM on August 15, 2003

That Kayak is totally sweet, but I have to say that even though in the pictures they show the lady kayaking over crystal waters with a kalidescope of rainbow colored fish and reef below, everytime I've actually been kayaking it's been on largely brown crap water with nothing to see besides discarded beer cans and other refuse even if the water WERE that clear. So the transparent boat would just be another thing to wash.

If I lived in a tropical paradise I would totally buy one, though. But then, if I lived in a tropical paradise a lot of things would be different.
posted by BigPicnic at 12:15 PM on August 15, 2003

There is another manufacturer that puts a top on their kayak.
posted by bk at 12:18 PM on August 15, 2003

There are a couple different kinds of kayaks. The kind that you sit in, that has a small hole that your lower body fits in, is probably the kind you're most familiar with. This kayak is another kind, known as a "sit on top" kayak, for obvious reasons. They're often used on open water, such as the ocean, and are generally pretty stable compared to sit-in kayaks, easy to get in and out of, can carry large loads (some carry more than 200 lbs), etc.

Ocean Kayaks makes a number of sit on tops that are nice. I personnally like the Scupper Pro but I don't know if they make them any more.

This one looks interesting but perhaps a little gimmicky. By the way, kayaks make good diving platforms, in calm water, and are lots of fun to paddle around in bays and, if you're a bit timid like me, close the shore.
posted by RustyBrooks at 12:25 PM on August 15, 2003

Oh, and
posted by RustyBrooks at 12:33 PM on August 15, 2003

Are they made in Hawaii?
Clear Blue Hawaii kayaks are made in Gilbert, Arizona, USA.

Ah ha! Hence the total inability to tell the difference between a kayak and a canoe. (to me, this is a canoe-like vessel, a sit on top kayak being similar to this, more of a plastic plank that has no sides coming up beside you, to be totally untechnical. But it's prolly a matter of definition)

I do think it's a novel idea, and it's pretty and I'd like to paddle around in one, but I don't know as I'd actually buy one. (I like their explaination of the scratch resistant hull: The moment the product is introduced into the ocean the water fills in the scratches. )
posted by nelleish at 12:40 PM on August 15, 2003

Wired magazine also mentions Clear Blue Hawaii Kayaks in this months edition. However, the one mentioned in Wired is a "real" kayak (with a top), see-through, and portable.
posted by antipodal at 12:48 PM on August 15, 2003

I had a clear skateboard like this for a while when I was a kid. I could watch the road go by beneath it as it flew out from under me and I landed on my ass.
posted by Shane at 1:00 PM on August 15, 2003

Isn't this basically for people too lazy to snorkel or scuba? I guess it would be a good alternative for people to take their kids or elderly companions out to see fish and top of the reefs. I'm sure you don't get that feeling of belonging in the sea with these though as you do with scuba and snorkel (IMO).

Obligatory: "I'd like to ride in a glass-bottom car. I can only imagine the wonderful things we're missing."
posted by Ufez Jones at 1:05 PM on August 15, 2003

I've used a kayak for diving a few times off Monterey Bay (south of San Francisco, California for those distant or unfamiliar readers) and I'd love to have transparent one! Lots of sea mammals there though, and it might be a bit disconcerting to have one of those curious fellows come right up underneath you and stare at you between your legs while your getting your gear ready.
posted by elendil71 at 1:09 PM on August 15, 2003

As someone who recently tried to kayak Lake Michagan and wound up with sore arms and blisters, I'd pick snorkelling (i.e., "floating") anyday. and i would not want to have been able to see all of the dead fish that i was probably kayaking over, anyway...
posted by armacy at 1:26 PM on August 15, 2003

As someone who recently tried to kayak Lake Michigan and wound up with sore arms and blisters, I'd pick snorkeling (i.e., "floating") any day. and i would not want to have been able to see all of the dead fish that i was probably kayaking over, anyway...

man... you're missing out... i frequently go up to Lake Superior (apostle islands, primarily) - lets you take a break daily, camp, explore, and feel as if you've got a destination.

oh - also incredibly beautiful and secluded.

i just hope you weren't too embittered by that experience to enjoy future ventures
posted by quadrinary at 1:39 PM on August 15, 2003

Neat as long as you use it in very shallow waters, over reefs, and any other places there will never be any power boats. Kayaking in busy Casco Bay, ME I try to be as brightly-colored and visible as possible, with a bright red boat, skirt, and jacket. The people who go and buy ocean-colored kayaks for paddling in busy areas just mystify me. They sure look cool in the store, but when you get out on the water and you're invisible -- not so cool.
posted by rusty at 1:46 PM on August 15, 2003

I was talking about the one mentioned in Wired last night when I was Kayaking with some people on the Chicago River. The portable nature of it raised a few red flags aside from the 4 grand price tag. Sadly it would be pretty useless to me since the river I paddle in is an opaque green.
posted by thirteen at 2:03 PM on August 15, 2003

That sure doesn't look like any kayak I've ever seen, even ignoring the fact that it's clear - and yes, I've rented a few sit-on-tops. It is, however, shaped pretty much exactly like a canoe. Maybe they call it a kayak because the people shown paddling it are using kayak paddles, and because people generally don't take canoes out on the ocean.
posted by Mars Saxman at 3:19 PM on August 15, 2003

From the pictures, it looks like basically a molded plastic bathtub shaped roughly like a small child's idea of a kayak, with some tubular framing and float bags at the bow and stern. It's not much like any existing type of kayak, but it's not that much like a canoe either. Kinda midway between the two, but if it's paddled with a kayak paddle, I guess they figured that's what you'd call it.

I mean, a sit-on-top isn't much like a kayak either, but the mode of paddling seems to carry the name along with it.

From the design, I can imagine how quickly the paddler will be sitting in a tub full of water if there's any kind of chop at all. This'll be wildly popular in the tropical resort market, but I don't see it having any other use.
posted by rusty at 8:15 PM on August 15, 2003

How long would it take for the entire bottom to get scratched up, so all you see is a bunch of white streaks? It looks so wide and ungainly.
posted by romanb at 11:26 AM on August 16, 2003

from the FAQ:
How scratch resistant are the hulls?
Scratch resistant test performed on the island of Oahu, Hawaii over coral chunks and lava rocks have yielded low visibility loss. The moment the product is introduced into the ocean the water fills in the scratches.
posted by Mars Saxman at 3:57 PM on August 16, 2003

Some times...underneath the water...there maybe't..WANT..TO..SEE!.....duhDUHH.....duhDUHH.....duhDUHH.
posted by HTuttle at 6:23 PM on August 16, 2003

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