Update: See the Outfitter VS Oasis Video Here.
Yesterday was a great day to compare the Hobie Outfitter and the Hobie Oasis on the water. Warwick and Judi from Shepparton had done their homework. They wanted a tandem pedal drive kayak and were considering purchasing the Outfitter. But they were unsure of the on-water merits of each of the Hobies Tandem kayaks. They were looking for a tandem kayak to get out on the water at home and on their travels around Australia later this year. They have already purchased Rhino roof bars and side loading bar to transport their kayak on top of the Pajero whilst towing their caravan. Judi's primary concern was stability and Warwick wanted a kayak that he could also use solo.
On Anderson Inlet, there was a decent swell pushing over the bar, an incoming tide and a 10 knot N-NW wind. First the Outfitter, with Judi feeling comfortable in the front, they handled the kayak and conditions well. And Warwick was able to sit sideways in the conditions. Then the Oasis. It powered through the small chop and they could feel the additional speed achieved with the more tradional hull shape. They could see the benefits of the Oasis for paddling and travelling over greater distances. When Judi was back on land, she said she felt more comfortable in the Oufitter with the wider rails and sitting down lower to the water and Warwick commented on the turning capibilities of the larger sailing rudder on the Oasis. Then, Warwick tested the Outfitter solo in tricky conditions. We agreed that a 15kg water bag would assist in keeping the bow down when travelling directly into the wind. He also tested the stabiltity when moving around the kayak and standing and was impressed.
Warwick tested both kayaks with Turbo Fins and felt they gave greater power, required when travelling solo. They both agree that the Outfitter will suit their recreational and fishing needs. Leaving the water, we loaded the Outfitter using the side loading bar and Warwick felt comfortable to do so on his own.
They purchased the Outfitter fitted with one set of Turbo Fins and a Large Rudder as the test drive reinforced what they were looking for in a Tandem Kayak.