Paul's Travel Pictures

Mission Surge Tandem Kayak Review
A pictures illustrated consumer review of the Mission Surge double (two person) sit-on-top recreational kayak.

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Lake Taupo Shore, NZ

 
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Double Sit On Top Kayak

 
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Mission Surge Tandem

 

After being disappointed with our purchase of an Intex Challenger K2 Inflatable Kayak, we decided to buy a "real" kayak to use during our stay in the Lake Taupo area of New Zealand.

There weren't many used double or "tandem" kayaks for sale on TradeMe (NZ's version of eBay). So we visited a kayak dealer in the city of Taupo.

Our two options at the kayak dealer were a Cobra brand double kayak and the Mission Surge Tandem kayak. We chose the Mission Surge, which was priced at $999 NZD (~$715 USD).

The total cost of our package deal was $1,800 NZD (~$1290 USD) which included a Bell SportRack roof rack for our car, two Splash paddles, two tie down straps, two Cobra back rests, and two Mission foam seat pads.

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The Mission Surge weighs about 28 kg (kilograms) or 62 lbs (pounds), has a length of 3.9 meters (12.8 feet), a width of 80 cm (31.5 inches), and the capacity to hold 250 kg (551 lbs). Mission manufactures the "Surge" in three color choices which include blue, yellow-lime and the red-orange that we chose.

It was relatively easy for my wife and I to lift and lower the Mission Surge kayak onto or off the roof rack on the top of our Toyota sedan with moderate effort. As the weeks rolled by, our newly developed kayaking muscles helped us move the kayak around without straining at all.

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Since we have some experience using sit-on-top recreational kayaks at resorts, it was very easy to get used to propelling and navigating the Mission Surge. The Cobra brand back rests were simple to install and made paddling with force less strenuous on our backs. The Mission brand foam seat pads were comfortable for short periods of time, but had me wishing they included thicker foam padding after a few hours of sitting in the kayak.
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My wife felt very comfortable sitting in the kayak, while my 6 foot (183 cm) frame sometimes felt a bit cramped in either seat. I found that I would paddle with my legs inside the kayak as intended and then move them up on the outer edges of the kayak while resting. This technique helped keep me from feeling cramped, allowed me to stretch my legs, and cool off my feet in the chilled waters of Lake Taupo.


 
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Mission Foam Seat Pad
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Cargo Net Storage Area
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Another small thing I could complain about is the cargo net storage area located at the rear of the Mission Surge kayak. I found that it was too tight to hold our sandals (or "jandals" in the local NZ lingo) and a small backpack. Eventually, the connector holding the bungee cord ends together popped apart. I had to tie knots into the ends of the bungee cord to keep it in place. This made it much easier to stuff the storage area with more items or larger bags.
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Bottom of Mission Surge
I took these photos of the bottom of the Mission Surge kayak in preparation to put it up for sale on TradeMe. The hull has an upswept bow, even weight and volume distribution, and a tracking keel. Traveling around the lake in the Mission Surge felt fast and efficient. The experience was a million times better when compared to using the Intex Challenger K2 inflatable kayak, but at many times the cost of the inflatable.
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Splash Kayak Paddles
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Cobra Brand Backrests
This kayak and the accessories were quite an investment for our trip, but we figured it would end up being cheaper than repeatedly renting a kayak for $40 to $80 NZD a day. In the end, we sold the kayak on "Trade Me" for several hundred less than we paid for it and were able to enjoy using it every few days for three months. Overall, I would highly recommend the Mission Surge to anyway interesting in buying an all purpose sit-on-top recreational kayak.
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Water Bottle & Manual
For more of my photo galleries, click on the following links: Intex Challenger K2 Inflatable Kayak Review, Santa Barbara Kayaking, Ski Rixen Cable Park, Lake Havasu AZ, Pro Dive PADI Scuba Class, and Key Largo Kayaking.

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