In late 2020 we posted information on Aquaglide’s upcoming new inflatable kayak line for 2021, consisting of 20 models for recreational, touring, fishing, whitewater/crossover and back-country. While twelve models remain the same, the Chelan and Blackfoot series were redesigned. We expanded the details in our Sneak Preview on the Aquaglide Chelan series, and we now turn to the updated Blackfoot fishing kayaks.
Just like the new Chelan series, the key words for the 2021 Blackfoots are comfort, performance and appointments, now featuring beefed-up graphics and even more storage options and gear attachments for a better fishing and paddling experience.
The previous Blackfoot 125 has been redesigned as a slightly longer 13 foot by 40 inch width Blackfoot Angler 130 for one paddler, but with space enough to outfit it as a double by adding an extra seat. A new BlackFoot Angler 160 – at a whopping 16 feet with 40 inch width – is a true tandem with all the bells and whistles and an 800 lb payload. The Blackfoot 110 solo has been retired.
Each of the new Blackfoots is constructed from Aquaglide’s commercial-grade Duratex material consisting of a lightweight, stiff and durable skin that dries easily. The high-pressure floor is covered with a diamond-cut EVA traction pad for secure footing and comfort while casting or standing.
Four threaded drain plugs can be opened or closed, dependent on the type of water action – open for self-draining in rough water or closed when in calm settings.
Front and rear splash decks with bungee lacing keep water out and gear intact.
The Blackfoots come standard with Aquaglide’s new High-Low Frame Seat with two seating options; the high setting offers better visibility and makes it easier to stand up when casting, while the low setting provides more stability in rougher waters. An adjustable, high backrest gives solid support, while the breathable fabric keeps one cooler. A storage shelf under the seat is perfect for tackle boxes while further storage options can be found on the seat back. As an added bonus – the seat can be removed, providing comfortable seating on the beach or around a campsite.
New Molle plates – as found on military backpacks and gear – are integrated onto the side tubes. Each can be used for attaching a multitude of aftermarket gadgets, such as first aid kits, multi-tool cases, waterproof gear pouches or Aquaglide’s optional, new, vertically-mounted cup holder. The Blackfoot series comes equipped with mesh storage pouches which attach to the molle plates.
A series of universal mounts on the side tubes and floor are compatible with a number of aftermarket rod holders, camera mounts and more. Webbing loops are now strategically positioned along the floor, providing multiple attachment points for the frame seat(s) or for rigging coolers and gear.
Also included is a soft cooler with four built-in rod holders and various pockets. This secures to the floor with a velcro-system.
The Blackfoots come with the new River Crossing backpack constructed from a rugged, 600 denier polyester. The bag has been redesigned with a larger capacity and full zipper for better fit as well as multiple handles for easier carrying. Mesh pockets and side panels provide drainage and breathability, while an exterior pocket and straps allow one to store a breakdown paddle. An external bungee lacing system provides more places to attach gear. The River Crossing backpack easily converts to a carrying case by stashing the adjustable, padded shoulder straps into a stowaway pocket when not in use or for plane flights, preventing snags. Dimensions are 39 x 17 x 13 inches.
Other features include movable foot braces, splash decks with bungee deck lacing, multiple carrying handles, three military valves.
A Posi Track weedless fin utilizes a US Fin box. The fin attaches with a tool-less thumb screw, and can be easily replaced with aftermarket shorter fins for shallow water or longer fins for increased tracking.
At 13 feet, the Blackfoot 130 is designed for solo paddling, yet has enough space to add a second paddler with purchase of a second seat. Two Molle plates with mesh storage bags, 7 mounting plates, 20 webbing loops provide all the storage options needed for a day of fishing. The extra-wide 40 inch beam and large side tubes provide stability. The kayak body is 41 lbs with a weight capacity of 600 lbs.
The 16-foot Blackfoot 160 is geared towards tandem paddling. With four Molle plates and mesh storage bags, 8 mounting plates, 36 webbing loops and 2 frame seats, the Blackfoot 160 can be outfitted with an arsenal. The Blackfoot 160 also features an extra-wide 40 inch beam and large side tubes, providing stability. The kayak body is 50 lbs with a weight capacity of 800 lbs. for paddlers and gear.
Warranty on the 2021 Blackfoots is two years.
Street prices on the Blackfoot 130 increased to $1199.99 while the Blackfoot 160 retails for $1499.99.
More information, product videos or to purchase can be found on the Blackfoot 130 or Blackfoot 160 XL product pages at AirKayaks.com. Stay tuned, we will be posting reviews as soon as they arrive, estimated at late January 2021. You can also contact us to get on the notification list – please let us know which model you are interested in – or call AirKayaks at 707-998-0135.