The Innova Traveller Inflatable Kayak: Warmth and Speed in Cold Climates
The Innova Traveller inflatable kayak is marketed as a decked yak for advanced whitewater that is designed to perform like a plastic body sit-inside kayak. But it really should be promoted as a recreational day tripper for use in any kind of water – except whitewater.
A Look at the Kayak
The Innova Traveller inflatable kayak features a semi-rigid cockpit coaming and spray skirt, drybag/backpack, and repair kit.
- Dimensions: 10'x28"
- Capacity: 1 adult (220 lbs)
- Weight: 30 lbs
- Deck & spray skirt
- River rating: Class III-IV
- 4 Air Chambers
- 1,200-denier Nitrylon™ fabric
- Packed dimensions: 20"x17"x10"
- 2-year warranty
Innova Inflatable Kayaks and Canoes - Factory Direct
Pros and Cons
Reviewers have mixed views on the Innova Traveller. The inflatable kayak performs well in flat water especially for a paddler with a slight built to average size (180 lbs or less). Otherwise, if you are larger, you may have trouble slipping out of the rather tight cockpit if you take a dunk (full Eskimo rolls not being possible).
This inflatable kayak is light and portable at 30 pounds, but since the storage space doesn’t hold more than your lunch, it isn’t for multi-day or even overnight trips. But here’s one feature where the Innova Traveller shines: in cold climate regions, the deck will provide better warmth and dryness on your legs and lower trunk than an open kayak or almost any other decked model. Also, the spray deck will keep water out, but even if you do flop and the cockpit floods, the Traveller won’t sink since the sealed air chambers will keep the kayak afloat.
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Here is the biggest con: Most reviews point out that since it doesn’t have self-bailing drain holes, it is not a good choice for technical rapids unless you are a very experienced kayaker – and if you are an advanced paddler, chances are you aren’t going to choose the Innova Traveller over at least two dozen other models.
Hard to Classify
Innova rates the Traveller as “most suitable” for moderate to advanced whitewater, and oddly lists its capabilities in other water conditions including flatwater, sea touring, and surfing as only “possible.” But most kayak review sites — including this one — classify the Traveller as a recreational touring kayak that is better for mild water and shoreline paddling, and definitely not for rapids.
Pass on This One
If you are limited to one boat, the Innova Traveller won’t beat out others as the “must have” kayak. For $1,149, ask yourself why you would buy this inflatable kayak when you can have an AIRE Lynx for the same money, or the 10' Innova Safari for $300 less? In fact, the Innova Traveller inflatable kayak has the same hull shape as the Safari, and is basically the decked version of that self-bailing kayak. For more versatility and a lot less money, we recommend you go with the Safari and forget the Traveller.
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