Wave Sport Habitat Kayak Review

Available in two sizes; the Habitat 74 and Habitat 80, this whitewater kayak is an ideal choice for creeking and river running applications. Designed to be very stable and supply a soft landing, the Wave Sport Habitat kayak allows you to varve through the eddies by simply lifting your knee and leaning into your turn. Lastly, the Habitat kayak uses a unique water-repellant vinyl on the bottom of the hull to make you lightning-fast as you traverse the currents, rapids, and eddies at your favorite paddling hole. Available in your choice of 7 colors, the Wave Sport Habitat kayak is a must-try whether you’re a newbie to creeking or a veteran paddler.

Performance Review

When reviewing the performance of the Wave Sport Habitat kayak, I took it down the Colorado River to play in some of my favorite rough waters to see what it is truly made of. This kayak performed well above my expectations, gliding easily and agilely through the roughest areas on its exclusive water-repellant vinyl coating.

Versatility Review

Since whitewater kayaks in general are not known for their versatility, I must say that I was very impressed with the Habitat kayak. Not only did it make for an excellent creeking experience, but it also worked beautifully while doing my river runs. Usually, I find that a given kayak model will only excel at one of these applications, but the Wave Sport Habitat kayak truly nailed it on both counts.

Cargo Space Review

I was actually quite impressed by the amount of cargo space that was available behind the cockpit seat. The high angle on the aft potion of the hull really lends itself to offering more space than found in most whitewater kayaks, so fitting my waterproof deck bag in that spot was actually quite easy.

Portability Review

The portability of the Wave Sport Habitat kayak was actually pretty nice considering its longer length than many other whitewater kayak styles. There are five security grab handles scattered all across the top of the hull to make transport a breeze and tying off lines as fast and safe as possible. Though I found it was easier to move with the help of a friend, you could easily get away with moving the Habitat on your own by dragging it along the shoreline.

Features

  • Adjustable quick release hip pads
  • Removable Outer Thigh Hooks
  • Adjustable, Padded Thigh Braces
  • Forward Ratcheting Backband
  • Five deep pocket grab handles

Specifications

Habitat 74:

  • Length: 8’/244 cm
  • Width: 25″/64 cm
  • Deck Height: 14.75″/37 cm
  • Weight: 47 lbs./21 kg
  • Cockpit Length: 33.5″/85 cm
  • Cockpit Width: 19″/48 cm
  • Paddler Weight: 100-200 lbs./45-91 kg
  • Volume: 74 gal/280 L

Habitat 80:

  • Length: 8′ 4″/254 cm
  • Width: 25.5″/65 cm
  • Deck Height: 15″/38 cm
  • Weight: 50 lbs./23 kg
  • Cockpit Length: 33.5″/85 cm
  • Cockpit Width: 19″/48 cm
  • Paddler Weight: 150-260 lbs./68-118 kg
  • Volume: 80 gal/303 L

Overall Review

I would rate my review of the Wave Sport Habitat kayak as a 5 out of 5 stars. I tried both the Habitat 74 and the Habitat 80 during my review to see which one worked best for me. I preferred the habitat 74 because I seemed to fit a little nicer in it at 5’ 10”, but the adjustable seat made the Habitat 80 just as viable if the 74 wasn’t available. Both versions of the Wave Sport Habitat kayak exceeded my expectations and raised the bar considerably with the sleek design and extremely responsive maneuverability. The water-repellant vinyl seemed to make a huge difference when trying to control the kayak in rough water, and that is a feature I’ve only seen on Wave Sport kayaks. The Habitat is an excellent choice for any kayaker looking to do some creeking in a quality, reliable, boat.

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Written by The Review Guy

The Review Guy has years of experience in the kayak, canoe and outdoors equipment business. Establishing one of the largest adventure sports retail chains, he understands what makes for good equipment. Today, the Review Guy tests a variety of equipment and details the pros and cons to readers of The Wilderness Review. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

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