We started this company with a small fleet of Old Town "Dirigo 106" kayaks, and the model has been a constant mainstay in our rental and touring operations for nearly 10 years. That says a lot about how we feel about these boats. Models come and models go. Rental fleets tend be abusive on boats and gear. We've had certain boats in our rental fleet that didn't last the season...we don't use those models in our rental fleet anymore. The Dirigo 106, and by extension the entire Dirigo Family, has stood the test of time. And, they're a great value for the consumer, too!
For starters, the Dirigo 106 is suitable for just about anyone. It is wide enough to be stable for beginners, has a large enough cockpit opening to easily
accommodate most paddlers, without being restrictive or overly-large. The Stabilform hull design coupled with an integrated keel ensures that the Dirigo tracks well for a kayak it's length. The seating is comfortable. There aren't a lot of fancy, unnecessary bells and whistles on this boat. That also means there's very little to wrong, break, or malfunction about these kayaks. There's enough dry storage in the rear hatch, combined with bungee cables on the front deck to store gear for a day trip. The boat weighs a reasonable 42 lbs, and has a maximum load capacity of 300 lbs. It's perfect for the Grand River, other slow moving rivers and creeks, and suitable for calm, sheltered lakes.
And while the Dirigo 106 has been a favourite for years, we've also expanding into carrying other members of the Dirigo Family, mainly the Dirigo 120, Dirigo 120 Angler, and the Dirigo Tandem Plus.
The Dirigo 120 takes the award-winning, popular design of the 106, and adds an extra two feet to the length. This added waterline helps the Dirigo 120 track straighter and go faster than it's smaller sibling. There's also a bit more storage in the rear hatch of the 120. The Dirigo 120 weighs in at 50 lbs, and adds an extra 50 lbs to the capacity over the 106, for a maximum load of 350 lbs.
The Dirigo 120 also comes in an Angler version, for those looking for a sit-inside kayak fishing option. It comes with all the standard features of the recreational version, plus it adds two flush-mount rod holders, an anchor trolley system, one swivel rod holder, and this model now comes in two cool camo patterns (Urban Camo with the new ACS2 seat shown in the photo below). The Angler options add an insignificant 2 lbs to the weight of the kayak.
The last member of our Dirigo Family, is the totally family-oriented tandem, the Dirigo Tandem Plus.
The tandem version takes all the features that make the Dirigo series such fantastic kayaks, and builds them into a kayak made for 2 (and a half*) paddlers! The Dirigo Tandem Plus features a breakthrough tandem design with two non-confining cockpit openings. In addition, you can bring along a third smaller passenger* in the middle jump seat. The jump seat is removable. And, if that’s not enough versatility for you, move the stern seat forward to allow for solo paddling. Lots of recreational tandems on the market make this claim. We've put it to the test ourselves and were pleasantly surprised by well the Dirigo Tandem Plus paddled solo. Equipped with easy-to-access storage and a Click Seal Hatch with bulkhead, this tandem kayak has everything you need for family fun on the water! The Tandem weighs 72 lbs, and has a maximum carrying capacity of 475 lbs.
If you, your family, or your friends are looking for comfortable, stable, well-built recreational kayaks for the cottage, camping trips, fishing trip, or paddling in your favourite backyard waterway, we recommend giving the Old Town Dirigo Family of kayaks a look!
You'll thank us!
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Grand River Kayak, 2 Port Maitland Road, Dunnville, ON, N1A 1Y3
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