Emotion Kayaks Grand Slam
Length 14' 5 " (4.4 m) Width 30 " (76.2 cm) Weight 69 lbs. (31.3 kg).
Maximum weight capacity 400 lbs (182 kg) depending on water conditions.
Leading up to the AnglersAfloat meets the RNLI extravaganza at Exmouth, one of the AnglersAfloat forum members had emailed me excitedly to mention that Emotion Kayaks would be launching their latest Fishing Kayak, the Emotion Grand Slam to the UK market.
Emotion Grand Slam on the water.
Before there were too many folk wondering around I took a sneaky peak, overall the shape was pleasing to the eye, all the standard fittings we would expect of a fishing kayak were there, pair of flush mounts, a Scotty rod holder towards the front of the cockpit, front hatch, large tankwell.
The build quality was very good, this was as far as I got before being spotted by the distributor, I made a quick exit preferring to concentrate on the kayak as a whole and make my own assumption about the design rather than hear the sales patter, which can wait until I've had a paddle and I know which questions need answering.
As this was a demo day the Emotion Grand Slam was soon out on the water and out being demo'd by the various visitors, I had to wait my turn till later in the day when things had calmed a little.
The conditions were not ideal for a full review; hardly a breath of wind or ripple on a very flat sea, nothing that would push the abilities of the Grand Slam which was a shame as I think it would have been a lot of fun.
Paddling out from the slipway the Grand Slam showed a good turn of speed for little input from me. With a bit of depth beneath me it was time to find out just how far I could push the hull design before a flip, sat side saddle I was able to sink most of the gunwale before getting that nervous feeling which comes before a sudden flip.
As it was so calm I thought I'd push things a little further by standing up, very easily done with such a solid platform beneath me, this was also helped by the very flat cockpit.
Standing was easy.
Manoeuvring was an easy affair, with the right technique a 180 degree turn could be done in three strokes, but a more standard technique would see the Grand Slam turning easily.
Sat back in the cockpit I checked out the large 11" x 15" rectangular side hinged hatch set just forward of the Emotions padded seat, easily opened with a twist of the locking mechanism, this is not a deep hatch but ideal if used in conjunction with a shallow bowl to keep bait or items of tackle within easy reach, of course in a big sea this is not something you would be wanting to open, but with sensible use there should be no problem.
Just in front of the hatch are three shaped cups, one round and two triangular, these are a great idea in a flat cockpit, leads, swivels and other small items of tackle can be dropped into them and keep them safe whilst on the water.
Feet are placed on an adjustable brace which was comfortable and easily adjusted even when at sea. On the gunwale either side of the cockpit are a pair of carry handles which didn't trap your fingers when carrying and both incorporated paddle keepers.
The front Scotty rod holder was as with most standard kayak designs, a little further away than is comfortable, but usable in a calm sea, the front of the cockpit was calling out for a dashboard style compass, lovely flat areas.
The paddlers view.
The two part rear tankwell was huge, easily reached from the cockpit, don't laugh not all kayaks have easily reached tankwells I can assure you, there is a round moulding to accommodate a live tankwell should you require one. Whilst the rear tankwell is vast, the front hatch is tiny, a plastic cover is held by crossing and overlapping bungee, clipped down by two very small and slightly fiddly plastic clips. With the bungee unclipped and the hardcover removed a second neoprene cover, ensured a dry watertight seal, I didn't remove the neoprene cover to see how easy it was to refit, I loved this system when it was on the early Prowler 13's, as with the Prowler I'm sure with the right knack it would be easily fitted. The only complaint would be the size of the hatch which in my mind was very small should you want to fit camping gear into the hold.
A vast tankwell.
Kitting out with Fish Finder should prove an easy enough task, a clear area on the small consul at the front of the cockpit should take the displays base. Easily reached rod holders could prove more problematic, although RAM Mounts could possibly be fitted to the slopping side deck below the gunwale.
Overall the Emotion Grand Slam in the conditions paddled was a very pleasant ride and worthy of a sea trial where she could be judged proper. Colours available are Olive Gree, Sandstone and Mustard. For more details visit www.emotionkayaks.com,