Intex 68306EP Challenger K1 Review: Budget-Friendly Inflatable Kayak

Intex Challenger K1 Review

What We Like

  • Relatively more affordable
  • Comfortable and spacious cockpit
  • Rugged overall construction
  • Quick inflation and deflation
  • Easy to move around
  • Comes with several accessories

What We Don’t Like

  • Quality of provided carry bag is wanting
  • Inflatable seat can be a little high for some users

Bottom Line

Despite being a more budget-friendly kayak, the Intex 68306EP Challenger K1 still has a more rugged construction and will be super comfortable to row.

Introduction

While high-quality kayaks do not always come cheap, it is still possible to get a good model on a budget, and the Intex 68306EP is a perfect example of this. Besides being affordable, it will still offer all the nice features you get from the more expensive options.

These features will include a durable and rugged vinyl construction and a low-profile design for extra stability and comfort. Kayakers will also love the inflatable seat, cargo nest and the fact that the oar and pump are provided.

Intex Challenger K1 Review

Intex Challenger K1

Build Quality: Rugged and Durable

Intex uses a rugged vinyl material to make this kayak, which ensures it is super sturdy and will take a beating without tearing or puncturing. And provided you are using it in the recommended mild water like slow-moving rivers, you will never have to deal with tears and punctures.

The choice of material also helps keep the overall weight of this kayak down as it will weigh only 23.9 pounds, and hence making it easy to grab and carry.

The design also incorporates a nice cargo net that many kayakers will find very useful as it will provide that extra storage space they need for their gear. Also, this cargo net is designed to be tough enough to hold the gear securely in place so that you do not lose anything in the water.

Maneuverability: Fairly Easy To Maneuver

If you are experienced and skilled enough at kayaking, there is hardly any kayak that you should not be able to maneuver in any water including whitewater rapids. However, it also helps if the kayak is designed to be easily maneuverable like this one.

One of the key elements that will ensure you can easily maneuver this kayak is that it has the weight more evenly distributed to make it more balanced. A kayak that feels balanced is easier to maneuver, and you can even make sharp turns at high speeds with ease.

Also, this kayak will come with a nice 86-inch aluminum paddle that will be very useful when it comes to controlling and maneuvering it in the water. Hence, with a little practice to sharpen your skills, this should be a super easy kayak to maneuver.

Stability: Inflatable Bottom Ensures More Stability

Directional stability is guaranteed when using this kayak as it will come with a removable Skeg that will help make it as stable as possible. The Skeg is a perfect size for the kayak and is also easy to install and remove.

Also, the Intex 68306EP Challenger K1 will include an inflatable I-beam floor, which will help keep it rigid enough when inflated. With this rigid flooring, this kayak will be highly stable when on thaw water.

But, despite being a highly stable kayak, it is important to note that it will still lean a little to one side when you are fast getting into it, which should be expected. However, it will hardly ever tip over and will only take a few seconds to get stable so that you can start rowing.

Design: Low-Profile Kayak

For the design, this kayak is designed to be more low-profile than many other one-person kayaks out there, which comes with a myriad of benefits for the kayakers.

The low-profile design will help improve the comfort and function of the kayak. Also, there are some high buoyancy chambers on the kayak's side that will help keep it afloat and make it easy to get back up in case of a tip-over

Intex also makes this kayak with two inflatable chambers, which helps to enhance the buoyancy and is also a safer design as it will make it harder for the kayak to sink in case it was punctured as the other chamber will maintain buoyancy.

Also, the design will include a closed deck with a spacious cockpit that has been designed for maximum user comfort. The cockpit has an inflatable seat with a backrest to make sure the kayaker will be even more comfortable.

And one more aspect of the design that is hard to overlook is the finish. This kayak will come with a bold black and green color combination with some amazing graphics that will provide extra safety as they make the kayak easy to spot on the water.

Setup Process: Super-Fast Inflation

The setup for this kayak is quite straightforward, and whether this is your first kayak or not, you can be sure you will have an easy time setting it up as there is nothing much to do besides unfolding and inflating it.

To make sure that the inflation will take as little effort as possible, the kayak will include the Boston valves which kayakers love as they will allow them to inflate and deflate the kayak in just a few minutes.

What’s more, Intex will provide a high-input pump to help with the inflation, which makes the setup even more effortless. Besides only taking a few minutes to set up, this kayak will also dry much faster, and you can have it completely dry in under 30 minutes.

Transport: Easy to Move with Grab Lines

Given that this is a compact and lightweight kayak, it should be obvious that it will take very little effort to carry to and from the spot you are kayaking.

But besides the smaller weight and compact size, this kayak will also include some nice grab lines with one at the front and another at the back. These grab lines provide a nice and secure place to hold the kayak when moving it around or dragging it in and out of the water.

And when folded down for storage and transportation, there is also a nice carry bag provided that will help make it easy to pack up. Although the quality of this carry bag is not the best, it will still be spacious enough and highly useful.

Accessories: Pump and Oar Provided

Because this kayak does not cost much, one will not expect it to come with the required accessories. However, Intex never disappoints as they will supply everything you need to start using the kayak straight from the box.

Key among the accessories and perhaps what many kayakers will appreciate most is the nice 86-inch aluminum paddle that is well-balanced and paddles well. Also, the high-output pump is a great addition to the product as it will take care of inflation.

And besides providing the handy carry case, you will get a nice repair patch on the package. This will ensure you have an effective way of dealing with tears and punctures in case you encounter them when out in the water.

Price: More Budget Friendly

No matter how you look at it, the Intex 68306EP Challenger K1 is a highly affordable kayak that will be a perfect choice for any kayaker shopping for a budget-friendly but still high-quality kayak.

For an under $100 kayak, you will get an even better value with this model given that it will include several of the essential accessories that you will need to use it.

Verdict

Despite not costing much, the Intex 68306EP is a rugged and stable one-person kayak that any kayaker will enjoy using.

While the smaller price tag is what many kayakers seem to appreciate most with this kayak, it is also a well-built vinyl model with a lot to offer. From inflatable seat with backrest to rigid bottom that provides stability and other things like a cargo net, aluminum oar, and high-output pump, this kayak has everything you need.

Specs

  • Product Name: Intex 68306EP Challenger K1
  • Product Brand: Intex
  • Material: Vinyl
  • Capacity: 1 person
  • Air Chambers: 2
  • Weight Capacity: 220 pounds
  • Kayak Weight: 23.9 pounds
  • Inflated Size: 9' x 2'6" x 1'1"
  • Accessories: 84-inch aluminum oars, high-output pump, carry bag and repair patch

Key Features

  • High-output pump provides easy inflation
  • Inflatable seat with backrest for extra comfort
  • Grab lines for easy transport
  • Rugged vinyl build for maximum durability
  • Inflatable floor provides rigidity
  • Cargo nest will provide extra space for gear
  • Low-profile design for stability and comfort

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