Posted by: airkayaks . | November 7, 2009

The Airis Inflatable Angler Kayak from Walker Bay – not just for fishing!

We recently had the opportunity to take out one of the Angler inflatable kayaks from Airis Inflatables – the kayak division of Walker Bay.

Airis Angler Inflatable Kayak

The Airis Angler is a rugged, high-pressure inflatable kayak - perfect for many types of water activities.

While marketed as a fishing kayak – and indeed it comes with a nifty accessory shelf and fishing mounts – the 12 foot Angler is a great choice for those that have lots of gear to transport. Birders, photographers and videographers will find the numerous attachment points, d-rings and storage options quite handy. Those headed out for day trips or even overnight, will also find a variety of places to attach & stash equipment.

Airis Inflatable Kayak Backpack

Airis Inflatable Kayak Backpack

AirPack BackPack: The first thing to note is the rugged AirPack backpack that houses the kayak. Measuring roughly 28 x 19x 11″, the pack features a mesh bottom for drainage, drawstring mesh top, front zipper pocket, two back padded shoulder straps; double side straps to attach the hand pump. It is rugged enough to check as baggage, and is fairly easy to haul around, weighing only 38 lbs. when all packed up.

Angler Kayak deflated Inflating the kayak: Set up is simple – unpack, unfold, inflate. We pumped up the kayak using the included double-action hand pump with attached pressure gauge. The military-style plunger valves are simple to use – twist one way to inflate and the other to deflate. While there are only two valves (one in the rear and one in the floor) expect a little bit of a workout during the 5-10 minutes it takes for standard manual inflation.

Airis Air Web

Airis Air Web High Pressure Construction

Airis Inflatable Kayaks are made using AirWeb High Pressure Construction (patent pending), formed from a heavy duty, seven layer polymer coated fabric that is joined inside by thousands of drop-stitch fibers. AirWeb makes it possible to inflate Airis Kayaks to more than 6.5 PSI or 0.45 bar, up to six times the maximum air pressure of other inflatable kayaks! This creates a hull that is incredibly rigid and durable without the use of complicated frame parts, and keeps the assembly of Airis Kayaks quick and simple.

As a tip, we used an Advanced Elements 12V pump to circumvent 80% of the inflation time and effort, and then topped it off with the hand pump. You will need to hold the the pump nozzle into the valve, as it doesn’t lock into position, but it works. You’ll still earn your merit badge getting it up to the 6.5PSI level with the hand pump (we quit at 5PSI and didn’t notice any problems). If you’re planning a short jaunt, simply attach the seat and you’re ready to go!

On the Water: We headed out for a short cruise and found the kayak to paddle and track well.

Airis Angler Seating Area and Foot Brace

Airis Angler Seating Area and Foot Brace

The seating area is 16 x 48 inches. Three integrated foot braces are located roughly 34, 38 and 42 inches from the back of the seating area, providing comfort for a variety of paddling sizes. A drain plug in the floor also serves as “cup holder” for your favorite beverage. The kayak has a bow keel & rear skeg.

Airis Angler Inflatable Kayak

The Airis Angler is stable enough to stand up without flipping.

Unlike many hard shells, the inflatables are very stable. We were able to stand up in the kayak fairly easily without tipping. It is low enough to the water to make jumping off and re-entry a breeze. One can also sit sideways, dangling their legs.

The high-backed seat is adjustable and provides plenty of support. Tired of paddling, or wanting to fish? Just snap your paddle into the two side paddle holders.

Airis Inflatable Side Paddle Holders

The Airis Angler features side paddle holders.

Storage Options:
The Angler package comes with an aluminum accessory mount board and two fishing rod holders. A Versa-Track accessory attachment system runs 7ft in length down two sides, and boasts 32 separate attachment points for gear. One simply “threads” the accessory board onto the Versatrack system behind the seat.

 Airis Angler Accessory Railing & Fishing Rod Holders

The Angler comes with an aluminum accessory mount and two rod holders.

At 16 x 16 x 5 inches deep, the self-draining, oversized rear storage compartment is large enough to house a milk crate, and features added bungee deck lacing.

Rear Storage Options

A rear storage option is large enough to house a milk crate.

Additional space is found in the 7 x 9 x 9 inch deep covered bow compartment, also with deck lacing. Six D-rings, two molded side handles, a heavy duty d-ring bow handle with 76 inch bowline, splash guard and bow bumper rail are other features.

Airis Angler Back View

Back overview of the Airis Angler

Bottom Line
The Airis Angler is a wonderful, high-quality kayak. It’s rugged, beautifully made – a real attention grabber – with numerous nifty little details.

Airis Angler and Velocity Inflatable Kayaks

Airis Angler next to its sibling, the Airis Velocity

If you’re looking for speed, check out the Angler’s sibling – the Velocity – but if you want a stable, rugged craft offering lots of versatility and storage options, this is it!

It comes in two colors – yellow and camouflage. For more details see http://www.airkayaks.com/products/Airis-Angler-Camo-Fishing-Inflatable-Kayak-%252d-%2316802.html

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Responses

  1. Loved your review of the Angler. Looking for a sturdy kayak and have been confused as to what to buy. Airis looks like my best bet. Will be mostly on flat waters, creeks and small lakes. Hey maybe Lake Erie around Buffalo. Anymore information you can send wsould be appreciated. Thanks Bob

    • Thanks Bob, did you see the video we put together? That might help –

      It really is a great kayak, I say that as I was really torn about keeping it for myself. The Airis Velocity won out as I opted for speed over storage space, stability, nifty features. I know it’s tough when you can’t see something in person, but, Airis has come out with a wonderful line. Everyone who gets one is very impressed.
      Thanks for the comments!
      Holly

  2. Is it suitable for the ocean?

    thanks
    stick

  3. Yes indeed its a great Kayak! I had loads of fun with it here in Singapore. I do flyfishing and luring with it, and it handles very well with the stability. I even took it out in choppy sea and its stable as well. I even had alot of fun getting big big queenfish and groupers! But sad to say, I heard WalkerBay is discontinuing the Angler…… I wonder why? maybe due to slow in sales of the Angler or something new coming up?

    • Walker Bay moved their manufacturing plant to Mexico, and so streamlined their product offerings for this year. They are still considering offering the Angler in the future; there just are not definitive plans at present.

      Yes, it’s a great kayak!

  4. Hi guys maybe you like to check out some of me catch reports, fishing on the Airis Angler at:
    http://flyfishingsg.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=SaltWater&action=display&thread=1187
    hope you guys enjoyed it!

  5. I’ve been using the Airis Angler in Puerto Rico for over a year now, to spin cast and fly fish in rivers, coastal lagoons, reservoirs and coastal waters. Since I live in a 2nd story apartment and drive a small, fuel efficient car, the inflatable Airis Angler has been perfect for me. I’ve adapted a swivel seat between the two rod holders on the aluminum platform, and changed one of them to a fly rod holder. This is a GREAT set up for fishing. Needless to say, I love my Airis Angler and hope they continue to offer it in the future when I am ready to buy another one.

    • hmmmm good idea! can you take a picture of the swivel seat for us to see? Thanks


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