Are you in search of a kayak that is affordable, durable, and perfect for all skill levels? Look no further than the Ocean Kayak Malibu. Renowned for revolutionizing sit-on-top (SOT) kayaks, Ocean Kayak has created the Malibu 11.5, an 11-foot, 5-inch kayak that delivers exceptional stability, performance, and value.
Glide and Tracking: Embrace the Smoothness
On first glance, the Malibu 11.5 may appear bulky and slow. However, once you settle into the cockpit and push off, you’ll experience its incredible stability and smoothness. The tri-form hull, coupled with the long keel, ensures fast and straight gliding across the water, even in windy and wavy conditions.
Despite the kayak’s weight, which may require a bit more effort to accelerate, it offers excellent tracking and glide. Weighing 59 pounds, the Malibu 11.5 maintains its course, making it even more stable than lighter boats. This kayak proves that sometimes, a little heft can work to your advantage.
Stability: A Floating Playground
The length, width, and low seating position of the Malibu make it exceptionally stable. You can even stand up on the deck and paddle it around, just like a paddleboard. Whether you want to play games, load up toys, or simply enjoy yourself on the water, the Malibu offers a great option.
Thanks to carefully positioned drain holes, any water that enters the kayak is quickly drained away, ensuring your overall stability and performance remain unaffected.
Despite its larger size, the Malibu 11.5 surprises with its maneuverability. The pontoon-style hull and pronounced keel may suggest difficulty in turning, but this kayak handles surprisingly well. It holds an edge competently, making turning much easier than expected, regardless of the conditions you find yourself in.
While it may take some effort to flip the kayak back over if you happen to tip, the self-bailing holes ensure water is quickly drained, allowing you to swiftly get back on track. Compared to sit-inside kayaks, this process is much simpler.
Ease of Transport: Tackling the Challenge
Transporting the Malibu 11.5 does present some challenges due to its weight and length. However, Ocean Kayaks has included molded-in plastic handles on both sides of the cockpit, as well as standard handles at the bow and stern. Additionally, the replaceable stern skid plate adds convenience when moving the kayak around. It’s worth noting that the Malibu 11.5 is designed to nest on top of other kayaks, optimizing storage efficiency.
Comfort: Your Floating Oasis
Getting into the Malibu is a breeze, thanks to its low side walls and open design. Once seated, the kayak’s length and width give you a sense of floating on your own island. You can even comfortably lie down and take a nap without any fear of tipping over.
The seat pad and adjustable padded backrest provide excellent support, while the molded-in footwells offer convenient foot placement options. Calf rests ensure added leg support, allowing you to paddle in comfort. With multiple handles strategically placed throughout the kayak, you have extra bracing points and easier lifting options.
Construction Quality: Built to Last
The Malibu’s heavier weight suggests that no expense was spared in its construction. With thick layers of plastic, this kayak is built to withstand rocky shores and sandy beaches. The seat pad, backrest, adjustment straps, and tank well retention bungees all exude quality. Ample storage space is available on the bow and stern, making it easy to bring along everything you need on your adventures.
Value: Performance at an Affordable Price
The Malibu 11.5 is one of the best-valued kayaks on the market. Despite its reasonable price, it offers superior performance and durability. Don’t be fooled by its affordability; this kayak is every bit as strong and well-designed as more expensive options. No wonder many kayak rental companies choose the Malibu for their fleets.
Conclusion: Your Family’s Perfect Companion
For hot summer days and family adventures, the Ocean Kayak Malibu 11.5 is an ideal choice. Its exceptional performance in all conditions, combined with its stability and storage capacity, make it suitable for long-distance cruising and overnight trips. While the Malibu may appear a bit bulky, it offers an array of features that cater to almost any kayaker’s needs. Experience the versatility, performance, and value that the Malibu brings to the water.