Gear Review: Wilderness Systems Tarpon 140
- LENGTH 14' / 427 cm
- WIDTH 28" / 71 cm
- MAX CAPACITY 375 lb / 170 kg
- DECK HEIGHT 14.50" / 37 cm
- WEIGHT 68 lb / 31 kg
Location of Test: Hagg Lake, Willamette River, John Day River, and Scappoose Bay
Duration: About 10 Days
Value Rating: 9
Durability Rating: 8
Overall Rating: 9
Full Review: I've been paddling the Wilderness Systems Tarpon 140 for a good chunk of the summer season. I've been mostly fishing from the Tarpon but have also found it to be a really solid, high performance sit on top kayak that is great for a wide variety of paddling. As SOT kayaks go, the Tarpon 140 is fast with solid tracking. I notice a significant performance boost in larger, open waters over the smaller sizes of the Tarpon family while still being maneuverable enough to keep position for fishing and get around obstacles in class 1-2 rapids.
"The Good" List: Solid stability, more than enough to not only hang your legs off the side to fish, but also cast a heavy streamer on a fly rod. I choose the Tarpon for most of my general fishing and kayaking needs. Whether I need to cover some distance on a multi day camping trip, or want to get a fishing spot before the power boaters do, I choose the Tarpon 140. Wilderness System's Airpro outfitting system keeps you comfortable and cool even after a long day.
"The Not so Good List": An easy compromise to make, but as with any sit on top, the Tarpon 140 is a wee bit heavy. The deck rigging/fishing rod keeping system on the bow is too short or rods over 7'5", but I found it useful as a paddle keeper.
The Bottom Line: If you want a solid rec-touring boat to fish and paddle but need more capacity, access to fish, and hate bilging a cockpit boat, check out the Tarpon 140.