The New Ocean Kayak Trident
Ocean Kayak has been one of the main kayak companies for quite sometime. In following with there commitment to innovation, Ocean Kayak has done a deck layout redesign of the very popular Trident Series of kayaks for 2017 but the hull stayed the same due to it's proven design for off shore stability and speed and surf zone handling confidence Tridents are known for. We were treated to a nice suprise recently as our Ocean Kayak representative delivered to us the first 2017 Trident 13 to hit the So Cal area. The Trident 13 we received is in the Orange Camo color which is very bright and noticeable.
At first glance you will notice all the features that have been on the Trident for some time but have definately been changed for 2017. The new Trident comes in at 13'6" in length, 29" in width, listed at 79 pounds but all at the shop agree it is ligther(more like 70), and a weight capacity of 355 pounds. Starting at the bow with a two piece plastic carry handle, also one in the stern offset for the rudder if installed, which gets the job done. They have included a new paddle park with rod tip holders. The paddle park is easy to use and very flexible to accomodate all size and shapes of paddles and also different angles at which to insert; ie from sitting or standing position. Just behind this you will find the new Click and Seal front hatch. This hatch is designed to lock down and keep the inside of the kayak completely dry for that extremely wet paddle or surf launching. Still at the bow of the kayak we have 3 more changes for this year. Ocean Kayak has included a Fishfiner mounting plate that is directly over a new transducer scupper. This will allow you to mount the fishfinder on the plate and conceal the transducer wire without drilling any holes. They have also included a GearTrac just in front of this plate to allow you to mount the fishfinder on a moveable base like a YakAttack Screwball. To continue on with the fishfinder set up they have included the Ocean Kayak Battery Bag up front in the same area with easy access from the front hatch. The bow area is laid out very nicely and will make for a clean and uncluttered front deck.
Moving to the footwell/seatwell area we will find some more changes. Included for the 2017 model are gunnel accessory tracts for mounting rod holders or anything else you can think off. It retains the same adjustable foot track/foot peg system as the previous model which is quick and easy to adjust. The MOD POD has been redesigned to include a double hinged hatch system with gear management storage bins underneath. The hatch has a 4 buckle attachment system and allows you to flip it around depending on which half of the hatch you prefer to have closer to you.
One half has a fishfinder mounting location with the ability to conceal wiring, 2 GearTracs, and a cup holder. The other half has a compartment on the top large enough to hold a phone which looks to be water tight and the flat area just behind the lock has a sealed magnet under it to hold hooks, lures etc when you put them down.. There is also the ability to take out one of the gear storage bins and have one bin that can slide forward and back under the MOD POD lid for access inside the kayak while still having some gear storage in the one bin. This looks like it will be a nice feature for quick access to lures or small items. The new MOD POD is slightly narrower than the previous model to allow for more room in the footwells to operate the rudder or those wearing paddling boots or shoes. There are 2 additional side carry handles on the kayak, same style as the bow/stern.
The biggest change to the new 2017 Trident is the addition of the ACS2 Seating System. The seating system is completely new and offers lots of adjustability that will surely accomodate most anglers/paddlers. It consists of an lower and upper half. The lower half has a flexible plastic base with a comfortable pad covered by a very breathable mesh fabric. This will allow air and water flow to help keep you cool and dry. The base has a 4 position adjustment to allow for raising and lower your legs and when accompanied by the adjustment of the backrest can offer many seating positions.
The upper half of the seat is secured to the seatwell and operates on a hinge system and has the ability to be adjusted for height with a ratcheting system that is loosened/tigthened by a large knob. You also have the 2 side straps to adjust the back rest forward and back. Two of the Kayak Fishing Supplies staff paddle the kayak and both found the seat comfortable and both were in completely different positions.
Just behind the seat we have a very large tankwell that is sure to accomodate just about any size of crate or bait tank you want to use. With GearTrac on either side for more accessory mounting options and a bungee system, the tankwell offers lots of possibilities for storage. There are 2 flushmount rod holders just rear of the seat that can be used for rod storage during transit form spot to spot or for trolling. The Trident 15 will also have a rear Click and Seal Hatch similar to the bow, but slightly smaller.
What everyone is waiting for, the on water test. The new Trident stays true to form with performance that is known with the Ocean Kayak Trident line. This model is still
very stable. In the seated position at rest and paddling, the kayak is very stable. We were able to easily move around the deck to to the bow and stern as well as side
stradle seating. We took it one step further and tried standing up. We were both able to stand up and paddle the Trident with ease. Just for reference, we are both about
5'10" and 180ish pounds. Tracking is very good on the test model without a rudder, so one to figure a rudder would make this a very good choice for long distance and
offshore paddling. The speed is very good with a good glide. Maneuverability was good as we were able to make quick turns which we feel would work well around boat docks
and definately in the surf.
The New Ocean Kayak Trident line keeps true to the Trident feel with some new features that are sure to work well for a variety of fishing types. This is a very good upgrade to a great kayak at
a really good price point that should fit into most anglers budget for this size and feature packed kayak.