Intex Challenger K1 Review

KAYAK OVERVIEW

Intex Challenger K1Intex are responsible for many of the most respected inflatable kayaks on the market. The Challenger K1 is no different, being one of the best value kayaks available today, it has all the features and accessories you need to get out on the water and have some fun.

The Intex Challenger K1 has a solo cockpit and is a perfect first kayak, inflatable or not. One thing that separates this inflatable craft from its contemporaries is the room available in the cockpit. It is streamlined yet comfortable which any seasoned kayaker will tell you is a fine balance.

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The Intex Challenger is the perfect inflatable for you to have a lazy day on a lake or river, it is also great for learning to paddle due to the full range of accessories you get with your purchase. It is easily inflated and includes a fully inflatable seat which means you will be traveling in comfort.

This inflatable kayak is 9 feet long and has inflatable i-beam floors which dramatically increase the on-water stability of the craft. Along with the 220 pounds carrying capacity, the kayak also has an attached cargo net which allows you to carry extra supplies for your adventure.

The cargo net gives you a lot more space as you don’t have to store your gear behind the seat or in between your legs. To make the most out of the net, it’s recommend to buy a small waterproof bag to keep your cell phone and any medication or electronics safe. Besides the the waterproofed bag you can store a large water bottle, towels and your sandals for boarding the beach.

One of the most interesting aspects of the Intex Challenger K1 is the fact that it can be stored so efficiently. Being able to fold your inflatable boat up and keep it inside a relatively small bag is a major treat for anyone who has had to drag around a bulky craft.

A thought that a lot of people have before purchasing an inflatable boat is the inflation process. These people imagine they’ll be blue in the face from blowing up a full boat. This quite simply will never be an issue, The Intex Challenger takes a blistering 5-10 minutes to fully inflate. That means that after arriving at your chosen boating location, inflating and packing up your inflatable kayak whilst putting on your safety clothing will not take you more than 15 minutes.

Features

  • Speedy craft – This is a very quick inflatable kayak which is easy to control.
  • Great accessories – Comes with 84 inch paddle, hand pump and repair patch, for the price this is a great deal.
  • I-beam floor – This technology helps the inflatable kayak stay stable and upright on the water.
  • Certified by the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association.
  • Cargo net – The cargo net allows you to securely carry your valuables and supplies.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: 108 inches in length and 30 inches in width
  • Weight: 27.2 pounds
  • Carrying capacity: 220 pounds
  • Material: Durable PVC

Our Review

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We love this small inflatable kayak, for the price you get yourself a durable and fun craft that will last during your mild adventuring. We wouldn’t recommend taking it on whitewater rapids, but it will suit your needs perfectly on calm waters.

Comes with good accessories

The Challenger K1 comes with all the accessories you need to simply get in the water and go. The paddle is not the greatest in terms of durability. If this is an issue for you, there are many cheap or quality paddles you can find online to carry as a replacement should you wish. The repair patch is always useful to carry with you as you paddle, while it is unlikely that your kayak will need a repair this patch is easily fitted and requires only a little time to dry. The hand pump has a high-output system, meaning that it pumps your inflatable kayak up in the quickest time possible.

Comfortable, but only for shorter people

Whilst this inflatable watercraft is generally comfortable, it is best suited to smaller people. When we tested it out, we quickly found out that my knees (I’m the husband) were extended in a rather uncomfortable position (I had problems finding a relaxing position while my wife didn’t have any problems at all). So be sure to check out the dimensions before you buy, if you’re longer than 6 foot, you might consider something slightly larger.

Does track, but not very well

This craft is not the best choice if you value tracking ability, but due to it being a light recreational craft you shouldn’t need to worry about tracking so much. With that said, the skeg does make a huge difference in tracking. Without it we could barely paddle in a straight line, the craft would just go all over the place and it was hard to focus on anything else than trying to go straight.

Pumping Up

We were really impressed by the time it takes to pump it up, 5-10 minutes (less if you’re experienced or use an electrical pump) for an inflatable boat that probably will cost you less than $100 is fantastic value. If this is your first inflatable kayak experience, then be warned, it may take a while before you are able to hand pump for 5 minutes. To make pumping as fast as possible we always recommend getting a dual action hand pump, which will pump air on both the up and down stroke.

Pros

  • The value of this kit is amazing: an inflatable kayak, paddle, hand pump and repair patch is great value for money.
  • This is a spacious inflatable watercraft.
  • 5-10 minutes to fully pump the K1 up really impressed us.
  • The inclusion of a cargo net makes an already spacious inflatable even better.

Cons

  • The included paddle is not very strong, we recommend buying a spare just in case.
  • Tall people may not fit into it with ease.
  • The K1 does not always track well

Conclusion

For the price of the Intex Challenger K1, you get a tremendous deal. This craft is perfect if you are a beginner who wants an easy introduction to the world of inflatable boats, or for someone who simply wants a no-hassle inflatable for some calm-water fun. The stability provided by the i-beams make this craft very stable when compared to its contemporaries, this gives you some extra piece of mind when you take this craft out on the water.

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