Wilderness Systems Ride 115

BEST FOR CRUISING AND FISHING

Sit-on-top kayaks are by far the most user-friendly and versatile on the market, and this 11-foot-6-inch, wide-hulled model pulls out in front of the fleet. It tracks well, paddles smoothly, and offers stability uncommon for crafts under 12 feet – it barely rocked as we stood to cast a rod. Even loaded with gear, the 33-inch-wide 115 was equally at home poking around coastlines as it was for fishing. Our one gripe? It's a hefty 76 pounds. But it does come with a replaceable skid plate, so you won't wear a hole in the hull as you drag it to the launch. [$850; wildernesssystems.com]