Pelican The Catch 120 NXT Review

Pelican The Catch 120 NXT on our 4Runner

I’ve owned the Pelican The Catch 120 NXT Kayak for a few weeks and paddled it on several local lakes. I’ve fished from it and tried out the high and low seating positions.

Buy the Pelican The Catch 120 NXT if

  • Fishing is a primary use for your kayaking
  • You need a stable platform for photography on the water
  • You want plenty of room for gear
  • You have enough reach to paddle a 34″ wide kayak
  • You have the strength and coordination to handle 12′ and 70 pounds overhead (if you’ll be transporting on roof racks on a taller vehicle)

Do not buy the Pelican The Catch 120 NXT if

  • You want to zip across the water at speed
  • You will rarely or never fish from your kayak
  • You want to run white water rapids in your kayak
  • You don’t have enough reach to paddle a 34″ wide kayak
  • Your only means of transport is roof racks on a taller vehicle and you aren’t comfortable maneuvering a 12′, 70 pound kayak over your head

Stability

Comfort levels vary. I’ve yet to even be a little worried about the stability of the Pelican The Catch 120 NXT. This kayak is very, very stable. Entering and exiting is easy due to the stability and the sit on top design. The tunnel hull keeps things steady when paddling, landing a fish or floating over the wake of a boat or jet ski.

Comfort

The seat is comfortable enough for paddling, floating or fishing for hours at a time.

Fishability

The Pelican The Catch 120 NXT is an angling kayak. It has rod holders, a tank well large enough for a big milk crate and tracks for all kinds of accessories. It is not the perfect fishing platform. It is a kayak. That means reaching your gear requires some agility. The forward tilting rod holder by the seat is in a position that will interfere with normal paddling. All the rod holders are less than perfect at holding your rod without adding rocket tubes or other accessories. They are more than good enough for flat water. I caught fish the first time fishing with this kayak. A good sign!

Fun

The Pelican The Catch 120 NXT is a fun kayak for those that enjoy fishing, photography and casually paddling around a lake. It can handle moderately rough water, wakes, etc. and moves surprisingly well for a fishing kayak of its design. That’s not to say it is fast. If your idea of fun is racing across the lake, this isn’t your kayak. If quietly approaching waterfowl to take their photo is your idea of relaxation, you’ll love this kayak.

Value

I got a good deal on the Pelican The Catch 120 NXT by buying later in the season. The one the store had left was dirty from being stored outdoors and I was able to get their “Blem” price. Even at list price, this is a kayak that gives you a lot for the money. At the price I paid, I got a capable fishing kayak for about what I would’ve paid for a good recreational kayak of the same size. As an aside, I ordered the Pelican recommended Pelican Symbiosa paddle from Amazon. The store where I bought the kayak didn’t carry that model. That wasn’t a big deal but they only carried really expensive paddles in the length I needed.

Summary

The Pelican The Catch 120 NXT kayak is working out great for my needs. It has served me well on lakes ranging from 60 to 200 acres. Fishing, photography and paddling are proving enjoyable on this kayak. The Sit On Top design is easy to enter and exit. I can handle getting this 12′, 70 pound kayak on and off the Yakima JayLow carriers on the roof rack of our 4Runner.


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