Outdoor Life - - GEAR -

ten years ago, Ho­bie Kayaks in­vented a whole new wheel with the first pedal-pow­ered kayak. Not only was the idea out­side the box, but the flex­i­ble fins and push ped­als (in­set) were out of this world. Last sum­mer, Ho­bie added re­verse to its MirageDrive sys­tem. Pull a cord at­tached to the drive and the fins ro­tate 180 de­grees to let you push the boat back­ward. The new Turbo fins are just as ef­fi­cient and fast as the orig­i­nals. Switch­ing into re­verse is a snap—it takes only a sec­ond to reach down and pull the cord. We tested the Pro Angler 14, one of Ho­bie’s big­gest and heav­i­est boats. It’s also well set up to fish hard. This is a bat­tle­ship, armed with huge gear wells, tackle stor­age in the deck, and ver­ti­cal and hor­i­zon­tal rod hold­ers. We fished the boat ev­ery­where, but the wide beam and high sides make the PA14 a nat­u­ral for open wa­ter. We were able to pedal off­shore, stand and cast in ocean swells, and lean over the side and land big fish with no chance of tip­ping over. This boat is so big that it comes with a sin­gle-blade ca­noe pad­dle for pick­ing through tight spa­ces. It would be al­most im­pos­si­ble to pad­dle very far without the MirageDrive 180. Like most of Ho­bie’s MirageDrive boats, the PA14 can be rigged with the EVOLVE elec­tric motor or a sail kit.

score: 91.5 website: ho­biefish­ price: $3,449

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