If you’ve ever taken a first-time paddler out in a kayak you’ve probably heard this question: How do I get out if I flip? It’s a common fear for new paddlers and even if you work on wet exits some people just don’t like feeling confined. So what can you do to score some on water time with them? Our answer is the uniquely named Do It Now from Fluid Kayaks.

Fluid Do It Now Specs
(S / M / L)
Length: 7’6” / 8’2” / 8’10”
Width: 28” / 29.5” / 30.75”
Weight: 42 / 46 / 49 lbs
Weight Range: 65-140 / 90-190 / 120-265 lbs
MSRP: $498 / $548 / $598
www.fluidkayaks.com

Fluid’s Do It Now will get you moving

The first thing I noticed about this sit-on-top kayak is that the adjustable foot pegs and wide padded thigh straps give options for how securely I fasten myself in. Leaving the straps loose makes the boat a perfect platform for those fearful of ‘being stuck’—tip over and you’ll fall off. By tightening the outfitting, I can lock my legs against the raised knee area and feel in control for running rapids, edging and rolling.

Simplicity rules for the Do It Now

One of the biggest benefits of the sit-on-top is how easy it is to get in and go—no fussing with a sprayskirt or worrying about waves splashing into the cockpit. Not needing to buy or struggle with a skirt is a huge benefit to beginners, and the ease of hopping on and off shore will also appeal to those that get in and out of their boats frequently, like video boaters and some guides.

Getting to the water was a bit tricky as I couldn’t throw the Fluid Do It Now on my shoulder like a regular kayak—I found it easiest to transport with a canoe-style overhead carry.

The Do It Now’s design is based on Fluid’s Bazooka creek boat but with a wider hull, which means bomber primary stability—even absolute beginners will feel confident they’ll remain upright in most situations. The tradeoff is that it’s difficult to get an efficient, vertical paddle stroke—I have to reach out to get to the water and when I have the outfitting adjusted to an aggressive position, my knees sometimes get in the way of a strong stroke. Adjusting the outfitting and switching to a longer kayak paddle helped me work around this.

Take it easy when on edge

The Do It Now feels stable riding over waves and small holes. The planing hull makes it easy to catch smooth waves for relaxed soul surfing.

Man paddles through rapids in a Fluid Do It Now whitewater kayak
Feature Photo: Emma Drudge

Putting the boat on edge allows for gentle carving in and out of eddies or across the face of waves. Testing an aggressive edge caused the water to catch and pile on the deck. This means people used to closed cockpit boats may need to adjust their style, but it’s unlikely to trip up beginners since they won’t be inclined to edge aggressively.

With the outfitting tightened, the Fluid Do It Now rolls like any other kayak. For those that aren’t at the rolling stage, bow, stern and side handles make it easy to get back on board—no need to drag it to shore.

Get started today with the Fluid Do It Now

Experienced whitewater kayakers will find the Do It Now a fun, convenient downriver ride, but where Fluid really hit the mark is for people looking to get into the sport who aren’t comfortable in a closed cockpit—all their excuses have been thrown out the window. Time to Do It Now!

This article was first published in the Spring 2015 issue of Rapid Magazine. Subscribe to Paddling Magazine’s print and digital editions, or browse the archives.

 

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