Wilderness Systems Ripper Kayak Review


The Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak is a new type of sit on top (SOT) kayak. A hybrid concept between sit on top and whitewater kayaks, the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak is incredibly stable for its size, especially for children. The Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak’s short length and wide hull allow paddlers to play in surf at the beach or explore lakes, rivers, and ponds.


The proportions of the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak are quite unique. The Ripper is short and wide making it super maneuverable, yet has a large enough footprint to remain stable. The backrest for the kayak seat is remarkably comfortable and keeps you firmly in place while playing in the waves. The built-in hatch on the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak provides a nice touch of storage capacity for your shoes, cell phone, and wallet.


The Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak is certainly a beach or lake toy. While this kayak is super fun to paddle, it is definitely more of a niche boat. The Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak lacks the versatility and secondary stability to meet the demands of the stalwart kayaker. Great for the beach and even for light creeking, the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak simply lacks the girth to be the only kayak you own.

Overall Review

I would rate my review of the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak as 4 out of 5. This kayak is very fun, as I mentioned before, but loses 1 review point for its niche design. If you have a lakefront cabin or a beach house, the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak is a great toy to have lying around. However, if you are a weekend voyageur, then the Wilderness Systems Ripper kayak is probably not right for you.

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Rating: 3.9/5 (7 votes cast)
Wilderness Systems Ripper Kayak Review, 3.9 out of 5 based on 7 ratings

Written by James Stalker

James Stalker is a licensed kayak teacher and field guide with over 20 years of experience. James fell in love with adventure sports after facing a bout of cancer at a young age. He can be found traveling in some of the corners of the continent almost untouched by nearly anyone else. He lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

This Review Has 6 Comments

  1. Robbie Norton

    All hail the ripper it tracks well and you can dance to it

  2. Yan Philips

    This model (and I’m a major fan of Wilderness Systems) tracks well and is really cost effective. Especially when you check on ebay or with amazon or something. I was able to pick one up for a little over a 100 bucks!

  3. Penz Triyloe

    You’re right Yan, this one does track well. Also Grant87 is right. It is SWEET!

  4. Tria Richardson

    I disagree with these other people. If you’re looking for a good kayak, try a different brand. I’ve had nothing but problems with the Wilderness System ones.

  5. Dennis

    Wilderness Systems is bush league. Get a better brand if you’re really serious about kayaking or canoeing. That’s my opinion and I’m right.

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