Pyranha have been making kayaks for 40 years, their boats have been designed and paddled by the best in the world across many disciplines. A company that has built a great reputation for building fantastic boats in the UK.
In the last few years Pyranha have been producing some amazing kayaks and have been building on each one to continue striving to the top of the whitewater market. The Machno, paddled by Bren Orton adding to the ever growing list of first descents, the Ripper, having the ability to be paddled with style almost anywhere in the world and the famous 9R, winning more races than I could possible think of. Which brings us to the Green race. With the likes of Dagger and Jackson dominating the long boat class for some time it was about time to see something new.
So when Pyranha launched the 12R many people were very excited. Although it may be based on the 9 foot little sister, it’s not quite that simple to just add an extra 3 feet of length. A complete over haul has taken place. Pyranha already have the knowledge of how to get a boat to go really fast on whitewater they just had to apply that principal to a boat 12 feet long and it was going to fly!
Luckily for us we have been lent one to play with, wasting no time it was straight to the Tawe put in for a blast to see how it shaped up on river. Here is how it went!
The first noticeable thing is just how easy it was to paddle. It may be a long boat but as soon as your floating on the water it has a certain feel, the kind that makes you think your able to throw ridiculous moves. Chances are you probably will not nail a sick tail squirt in this boat but the manoeuvrability and responsiveness make you believe otherwise (We look forward to being proved wrong).
Pyranha have added plenty of rocker to the 12R which helps it resurface quickly and allows the boat which is the size of an open canoe to boof. The cleverly shaped rails on the front enable plenty of catch when hitting eddy’s, waves and holes which means it steers well and is easy to control. The rear has a completely different feel to it however, the tapering edge makes the boat smooth through turns and will carve its way in and out of eddy’s with less gradient.
The balance in the hull its great, it has the ability to carry the boat in many environments, it keeps a real nice cruising speed and gives you plenty of confidence when trying new things. Overall we have been really impressed with the 12R. Its built for racing but it would fit very nicely if you just wanted a boat for an all round jolly. There would be no reason you couldn’t take this boat and your kitchen sink on a multi-day trip or completely destroy your mates in a pop out competition.
For a boat that stands a whopping 12ft it only weighs 26kg! Which is nothing when you think some 9ft creek boats are sitting around 23kg. It means that it has a huge range for a paddlers weight, 60kg-125kg. The outfit is the same as what you will find in all the other river boats from Pyranha so you can easily adjust this boat for you, with a little help from bum shims perhaps.
So lets get down to business. What will one of these set you back? Actually its not as expensive as you may think, the rrp on the Pyranha 12R is £1299 which isn’t so bad considering the Dagger Green boat is about £1499 and the Riper stands at £1049.
Now if your considering one of these or even curious, I urge you to go find a demo at the next show or your local shop and your mind will be blown! Just remember, you may need to build a bigger garage to store it and the airbags you are going to need for a boat this size compares to a bouncy castle, you may need to re-mortgage your house…