Though it's more than a year old, the Jefe, like its Tsangpo-stomping predecessor the Gus, has no equal as a creek and expedition boat. The long waterline, medium chines, displacement hull, and heavily rockered bow allow the boat to accelerate, track through turns, climb out of holes, and get horizontal quickly after a waterfallall the things you need when you're white-knuckling it in a local creek or distant canyon. But beyond technical performance, the Jefe self-supports like the kayak version of a Carnival cruise ship. A high cockpit rim in back allows your stow floats to slide in fully loaded, and easy-access compartments under the seat act like dual jockey boxes for snacks and gloves. 8'2"; www.liquidlogickayaks.comBonus: Rigid Black Diamond grab handles make easy anchor points for rescues.Bummer: The ratcheting backband hardware is brittle; always carry spares.
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