Saturday, December 15, 2007

Review: Pyranha Everest


Length – 8’6”

Width – 26 ½”

Volume – 82.4 gallons

Cockpit Length/Width – 37 ½”/19 ½”

Weight – 46.5 lbs

Weight Range – 165lbs – 301lbs

For many, the new Everest is a much- needed addition to Pyranha’s creek boat line-up. Essentially a “Burn XL”, the Everest is designed for multiday expedition and to allow bigger paddlers to haul gear. With that said, let me emphasize that this review is intended to tell how the boat performs for a person of my weight in comparison to the Burn series. Adam Goshorn has also reviewed the Everest on his blog. Adam is a big boy who runs the goods so if you’re interested in the Everest, cruise on over and read his excellent review at

I am at the very bottom of the weight range for the Everest but I wanted an 8’6” kayak to race in the Green Race this year, and Dinver at Pyranha made it happen for me. In my Burn M, the best time I recorded this fall before the race was 5:30 but I felt like I could be much faster in a longer boat. The race results proved this – my short boat time in the Everest was 5:05, despite losing a contact lens in Gorilla in my long boat run. I feel that breaking the five-minute mark next year is easily within reach in this boat. Point in taking – the boat is FAST and easy to paddle!

I picked up my Everest on November 1st and outfitted it that evening at Chris Harjes’ house in Asheville. Surprisingly the boat didn’t swallow me as I expected it would. I simply shimmed out the hip pads, added a quarter inch of foam to the seat, adjusted the thighbraces, and adjusted the bulkhead, and I was ready to go. The next morning Chris and I made a couple of training laps on the Green. As I slid into the river, I noticed the extra bow rocker and peak on the bow deck this boat has over the Burn. By Bride of Frankenstein, I was already used to the boat. Things only got better as I raced downstream from Frankenstein. This was only a practice lap so I paid attention to how the boat reacted to features differently than my Burn. The biggest things I noticed are characteristic of a bigger boat – it sits higher in the water (making it faster, easier to turn, not as easily affected by funny water) but it stays on top of things better due to the improved shape of the bow deck and the rocker template. Additionally, the hull is more forgiving than the Burn’s hull because of the more beveled edges.

The result of these traits is a big, fast, forgiving kayak that you can jump in and paddle. Just look at the Green Race results – I posted the sixth fastest short boat time the second time I paddled this boat. This will be my new high-water boat and my go-to boat for when I need to haul more gear than my Burn likes to haul. Need more proof? Demo an Everest for yourself. Nantahala Outdoor Center has a demo that you can try on the Nantahala, and my brother and I each have one that is available to demo for those who are interested.

In addition to these size comparison shots with my Burn M, there are some photos of the Everest in action down the page.

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