Ocean Kayak Zest Two SOT Review
Getting out on the water can be twice the fun when you have a paddling partner. With a tandem kayak you can both take to the water and enjoy the outdoors without needing to purchase two vessels, which can often be more economical.
You might be considering purchasing the Ocean Kayak Zest Two but before you do, we’re here to give you a rundown of the best features.
Zest Two Overview
A tandem yak can be a fun way of spending time with your family, with many of them able to take a third passenger, such as a child or a dog.
Although you might be reducing your load by simply having a two-person kayak instead of two kayaks, tandems can often be larger in size. So you should think about whether the extra length might be a transportation or storage issue.
If you think you’ll be paddling on your own more often than with a partner then a tandem may not be for you. With the length of the Zest Two being over 16 feet, you might struggle to transport it by yourself. It’s also not designed for single person paddling, due to the position of the seats and location of the carrying handles.
As with all sit-on-tops, the Zest Two is better suited to warmer climates because of the exposed deck. So if you want an all-season vessel, you might be better opting for a sit-inside.
Top Features Of The Zest Two
The Zest Two is a tandem sit-on-top touring kayak that’s designed for day trips or camping adventures. It has a huge 600 pound weight capacity so you can load it up with lots of gear and have space for a child or family pet.
The Zest Two is built to be paddled over long distances, being classed as a touring vessel. So it can be an ideal choice for exploring in the ocean. It can handle waves and current, and even surf. However, it’s not designed specifically for surfing or whitewater.
As well as stability, the length and width should mean it can glide pretty well across the water. Touring yaks are designed to minimize fatigue when traveling over long distances.
Ocean Kayak 16-Feet Zest Two Overview
While it holds up to three passengers, there are only two seats. The seating is a padded seat with seatback, designed to be comfortable when paddling. However, the seat is not raised off the deck, so you might find that if water splashes in, you’ll be sitting in it.
For added comfort there are molded footrests, which can be helpful for different sized paddlers to gain more stability and power when paddling.
Load It Up
On this yak there’s a large cargo well with bungee cords at the back as well as a second storage well at the bow, also with bungee cords, giving you plenty of room for camping gear, a cooler and dry bags.
With the maximum weight capacity being 600 pounds, it can easily carry two paddlers and enough gear for a few days away. It could also carry a child or small adult as a third person. Or you could let your dog hop on board and enjoy the water with you.
Zest Two Alternatives
Riot Polarity 16.5
If you think you might like to paddle in colder weather, the Riot Polarity might be a good alternative. It’s a 16 foot 6 inch sit-inside with a catamaran hull for added speed and stability. It’s just 25.4 inches wide and has a capacity of 551 pounds, so is built for touring and camping.
Vibe Yellowfin 130T
The Yellowfin 130T might be a good alternative if you’re looking for a shorter tandem. This 13 foot sit-on-top is 35 inches wide, has a capacity of 500 pounds and includes rod holders and mounting points for fishing accessories. It comes with two seats and paddles but there’s also a center seat area for a child or dog, and can be used for paddling solo.
Driftsun Voyager 2
Another alternative is the Driftsun Voyager. It’s a 10 foot inflatable tandem sit-on-top with two seats and two paddles. It could be good if you’re short on space but still want to enjoy the water with a friend, as it weighs just 27 pounds and can deflate to just 26 by 16 by 8 inches.
If you’re looking for the ideal vessel to let you and your partner or family get together on the water, then the Zest Two could be it. For summer adventures at the beach or camping expeditions at your local lake, this yak could have the stability and storage that you need.
If you’ve decided that you want to have some fun on the water with someone sharing the paddling, then check out the Zest Two here. Maybe you can let us know how you get on after you’ve bought one - just leave us a comment. And don’t forget, you can share this article with your friends or future tandem paddling partner.