Wilderness Systems Tarpon 135T
If you’re looking for a reliable kayak for yourself and a friend or family member, look no further! A striking combination of value and features, the Tarpon 135T is made to not be too long while giving you what you need to always have a memorable occasion on the water.
- Very comfortable
- Some dry storage
- Tracks for accessory mounts
- Stable in the water
- Very heavy
- Needs a rudder for best performance
Size and Weight
As a tandem model, the Tarpon 135T has similar dimensions to other kayaks of this configuration, coming in at 13’ 6” (411cm) long by 34” (86 cm) wide and a deck height of 16’ (40 cm). It weighs 88 lbs. (40 kg) and is best transported with two people.
Again due to its size, the Tarpon 135T has a maximum capacity of 600 lbs. This should easily be enough for two average or larger sized people and plenty of gear.
The Tarpon 135T has a shallow tankwell covered with a bungee cord at the bow and a rigid carry handle fastened solidly to the deck so it can be used as a spot to secure the boat during transportation. The back of the tank well in front of the cockpit has a flat, molded protrusion that can be used to mount accessories like a phone holder if you want to drill into the boat.
On either side of the cockpit, there is a short section of Wilderness Systems “SlideTrax”. This allows the user to add whatever type of mount they want for their accessories like a fish finder or fishing rod holder.
On the inside of the cockpit are the adjustable foot rests. These are the typical Wilderness Systems foot rests that feature a solid locking lever and soft but grip enhancing foam on each for comfort.
There are four scupper holes and a molded cup holder in front of a dry storage hatch located immediately in front of the seat that locks with a lever. On either side of the hatch are molded “pockets” covered with rubber netting to secure any small objects you may have with you on your trip.
The seating is the fully adjustable “Phase 3 AirPro” seat. In the front of the seat is a button that adjusts the backrest up and a strap that if pulled, makes it go down. Other straps on the sides adjust the backrest forward and backward while another one pulls the portion of the seat under your thighs up to relieve tension on your hamstrings or adjust your overall body angle while sitting. This system allows a much greater degree of positioning and is known for its comfort. You get a complimentary mesh cloth cup holder that hangs under the seat for when it is adjusted up as well.
On either side of the kayak is a non-rigid carry handle. There are also paddle holders located here for easily securing your paddle while not in use.
The rearward cockpit is exactly like the front one. Behind the rear seat is another tankwell with a bungee cord for additional gear or a small cooler. Inside the tankwell at the back, there is another rigid carry handle.
The stern features a molded slot on the top and a lip that wraps around the outside forming a ledge, allowing for a rudder to be mounted. On the bottom of the hull at stern is a replaceable skid plate mounted to the end of the keel. This allows it to be dragged without damaging the hull itself.
The Tarpon 135T performs well in most kayaking conditions, but it is important to keep in mind that the weight of this boat makes it less responsive to paddle strokes compared to a typical single-seat kayak. Therefore, both paddlers must learn to work together to achieve the best results. This kayak will maneuver better with the rudder system installed to help steer it in larger bodies of water or swift currents.
The hull itself is a larger version of the standard Tarpon, and generally matches both the primary and secondary stability of that design.
Specification: Wilderness Systems Tarpon 135T