The Jackson Kayak Cuda!

Posted: November 19, 2011 by RiverCrawler in Fishing - Freshwater, Fishing - Saltwater, General, Hunter King

Well, I finished my research essay, took nearly two weeks, now I am able to write something more interesting than a Critical analysis on Charlotte Perkins Gilman and “The Yellow Wallpaper.” I can write a full review on the Jackson Kayak Cuda!

The Jackson Kayak Cuda hit the market only s short two weeks ago. Many per-orders were placed, and many dealers were awaiting the arrival of the Cuda! I think some dealers were more excited to get the demo boats than the customers were excited to receive their boats. Never the less, everyone was awaiting the arrival of the Jackson Kayak Cuda! Dealers, customers, rival companies, and the Jackson Kayak Fishing Team Members, like me.

Jackson Kayak produced one of the, if not the, best fishing kayak ever in December of last year; this boat was the Coosa! A Drew Gergory creation that swept the market, selling over 2000 boats in under a year. As a fishing team member I knew that the 14ft version was in the works just a month after the Coosa went into production; it had no name, we just knew that the team working on it was going to stretch out he Coosa into a flat water fishing machine. So we sat back and watched as the boat began to take shape. I visited the factory to see the very first molded prototype. I knew from then on it could only get better.

What I saw was a whole new design, had nothing to do with the Coosa, but it was going to get rigged like a Coosa and I liked it. We received updates for months about what was going on, and we could not share them with the public it was hard not to click the share button on facebook, or copy and paste a picture to a forum. My only weapon was word of mouth, and I had to keep some of it quite also.

Then the day came where it was time to share it with the world, well what you could see of it through the brush around the lake. Once people saw that the boat was in fact 14ft long and that it was going to go into production the forums exploded! Every forum I frequented had a thread about the new Jackson boat, still a nameless creation.  Between the Jackson Kayak Fishing Team Guys we had close to 30 names picked for the boat, and it needed a name quick before it hit the Outdoor Retail Show to be shown of at the Jackson booth. So Barracuda naturally was the name that it got stuck with, since a barracuda is one mean hunter, and goes after anything it can eat, it fit the boat that had the same attitude; but to stick with Coosa we shortened it to the Cuda!

The next day it was at the Outdoor Retail Show, it was instantly a success! Many people stopped bye and made videos of the prototype and talked with Drew Gregory. This was the first time the Jackson Kayak Cuda was exposed, and was not taken from behind a bush! This video was by Rapid Media, and rapid they were, quickly sharing the boat with 5000 views on YouTube! And again the forums erupted. And back to the front line went the JK Fishing Team, armed with proposed specs, weights, photos, and even the specs of the 2012 Coosa! So many new features were coming out we had our work cut out for us.

Then it was time for the Pre-orders, many were placed; so many in fact that there are still pre-ordered boats being molded.

I had the liberty of going the Jackson Factory to pick of my Cuda the Friday after they hit the market. If I am correct I was the second person to get the Cuda, and everyone wanted pictures! So I took many pictures and began showing them to the world!

Now, we make it to the Climax of my Novella where I shut up about the back story and actually get to the review of the boat. Since this what all of you want to hear right? I can let you read my analysis of “They Yellow Wallpaper,” if you wish? No? Okay. Review Time!

My boat spent the first night in my living room. Where I began to photograph and look over the kayak, and prepare to write this review.

First off, the boat only weighs around 75lbs. Not bad at all. When the boat is empty it is perfectly balanced at on the side handle and you can one hand carry the boat as far as you wish.

The hull of the boat mimics that of the Coosa. It has a slight V-hull with la slight pontoon effect. This gives you the best of both worlds:  speed and stability. The scupper holes are again recessed a little bit into a channel keeping any frock from contacting them and causing damage. The bow and stern of the boat have a nice taper making this kayak a sword in the water. It is not nearly as tall as the Coosa, meaning it sits better in the water, and is less effected by the wind.

On to the topside, from bow to stern the layout is the best I have ever seen.

The bow handle, as well as the stern, are tightened by a bungee stopper combo; keeping the handles out of the way. The rod tip cover has a nice set of bungees over it to hold it in place and to store gear on top of it.

Coming back a mere six inches we find the front hatch. A large hatch and leads to a very spacious compartment.

Just behind the hatch we find two large flat spaces for mounting hardware.  Then an awesome ridge with six rod stagers. And then two more large flat mounting spaces.

Right between your feet is a large center hatch that makes getting rods in and out a breeze, plus it is great way to access anything in the belly of the kayak; for example, cameras.  The standing platform around the hatch has 6 scupper holes, plus two under the seat, this allows for maximum drainage when needed, plus the support needed to make a sturdy standing platform. The center hatch has some accessories coming out in the future, so be on the lookout for them.

Next comes the seat; the seat is the famed elite seat. It has two new pockets, one under the seat, and one across the back. There are three seating positions on the Cuda. Low, high, and Fly. The low position is the standard position, keeps you out of the wind. The high gets you up and where you can see, and so you can stand easier. Then comes fly, fly is a new creation and only available on the Cuda; the seat can be moved back to where it rest in the tank well giving you a large place to stand, and lay out your fly line.

The tank well is very spacious, and drains into the scupper holes under the seat.  More flat spaces are available, but the coolest part is the two tackle stagers that are made to hold two boxes upright for easy no look access.

Then come the back hatch, it is a small circle hatch, but you can still stuff gear into it, but nothing special.

I opted out of the rudder system, I will pick one of those up soon. But I spend probably 10 minutes complaining that there was not a drain hole, then I say it! Located that the lowest point on the boat, just under where the rudder will mount, is the best placed drain plug and boat has ever had.

That is about all I have, give me more time in the boat, and we will have videos flying left and right!

Link to the Photo Album on Facebook.


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