I bit the bullet and made the decision to upgrade both of my kayaks. Jackson Kayak is a young company but they really have their stuff together with the design and construction of the new line of fishing specific boats. A Cuda 12 and a Big Tuna are the newest members to my fleet.
This is my first sit on top and I thought it would take awhile to get used to. Not the case. I was instantly comfortable in the boat. The hatch is something I really like for keeping everything except for the tackle/fly boxes. It's nice to keep things dry inside the hull and not rely solely on dry bags to keep gear out of the elements. And speaking of the hull, it is pretty flat. A major difference from the tunnel hull design of the Ultimate. After getting used to the stability, I really liked how I was able to glide over some of the marsh mud when I pulled up into TOO shallow of water. The boat moves easier in places where the Ultimate would have had me poling and jumping to get unstuck.
The rear of the boat has a lot going on for a small space. Bungees and hooks seemingly everywhere. The only thing that will be back there for me will be my AO cooler. After taking a look at the setup I found a quick, easy way to secure it. The straps hang down and get bungeed to the top of the gunwale. This is quick, secure and actually holds to cooler open when unzipped which is nice when using a soft cooler.
Jackson knocked it out of the park with this one. We'll see what I change over the upcoming months. Big thanks to the fine folks at Pack & Paddle here in Lafayette for having such an awesome place to buy gear. The outdoor scene would be nothing without them. If the weather holds out I'll be taking a trip to Point Aux Chene or somewhere down there on sunday for some more redfish action and gear testing. Here's to hoping the weatherman is wrong in my favor. Look for a review on the BIG TUNA in the near future.