When shopping for a kayak, you’ll be surprised by the dozens of options at your disposal. However, it’s best to find a kayak that matches your performance needs, budget, and experience. Advanced Elements PackLite is one such kayak. Designed with amateur and expert kayakers in mind, it offers superior performance and unmatched build quality.
The kayak is designed for kayakers looking for a compact inflatable raft without giving up on comfort, versatility, or performance. It delivers a relaxing and stable kayaking experience, more so in warm waters. If you want to spend lazy afternoons floating on backcountry lakes or paddling on shallow rivers, the Advanced Elements PackLite kayak will suit you.
Advanced Elements PackLite Features
These are some of the features you’ll find on this kayak:
- Polyurethane-coated ripstop polyester construction
- 3-chamber design for stability and reliability
- Twistlock valves allow quick inflation
- D-rings and a rubber-molded handle for tie-downs
- 7 ft. 10 in. length, 35 in. width
- Lightweight reinforced PVC free fabric
- Welded perimeter seams
- 4 pounds weight
- 250 pounds capacity
- Integrated seat
- Packed dimensions: 11 x 11 x 5 inches
The PackLite kayak is suited for all occasions. It’s a lightweight and compact recreational kayak equipped with various features that enhance its performance and stability. The heavy-duty but lightweight construction allows you to effortlessly tuck it away in your trunk and carry it easily.
What Do Users Say?
Those who have used the PackLite kayak say that it’s ideal for short trips on rivers and sheltered bays. The kayak is designed to enhance your outdoor experience. It’s built with cutting-edge technology to deliver ultimate performance and reliability. Thus, this kayak is the ultimate accessory for those who want to spend their weekends paddling away.
Here you can check a quick video overview by airkayaks:
With the Advanced Elements PackLite kayak, you can paddle to the remotest of locations, as long as it’s not a high-class river. The lightweight but sturdy construction makes it easy for you to maneuver around swamps, alpine lakes, and anywhere else you wish to go. It features high-strength polyurethane reinforced with welded seams for reliable paddling, even in the worst conditions.
The kayak comes with a mesh bag that can get clipped onto its body. When out of the water, you can convert the kayak into an on-deck gear bag. Thus, it’s ideal for kayakers who want to explore rivers or lakes tucked away in the woods or mountains where dragging a canoe would be impossible.
The easy-to-use Twistlock allows easy inflation. You can blow it up in less than 5 minutes without much hassle. On the downside, however, the hoses used to inflate the raft’s cushion and floor are not that malleable.
Comfortability and Support
If you’re tall, you won’t have any trouble using this raft. It comes with adequate legroom and can support up to 250 pounds. The plastic may not be as thick as what you’ll find in similar products, but the raft holds its own. Thanks to the lightweight construction, the yak tends to turn on its own. However, this shouldn’t be an issue for experienced rafters or kayakers.
Most users concede that they bought the Advanced Elements PackLite raft because they thought it makes backpacking more interesting. One of the favorite ways to use this kayak when exploring the hinterland is loading it into a backpack when hiking upstream, then floating back downstream. This is not the type of raft you’d use on an open lake or an ocean that’s breezy or wind-whipped.
Not So Balanced
Some minor wind wake, even from distant boats, can throw you off-balance. Therefore, if you are out in some remote backcountry lake, which is calm, you’ll enjoy floating around on this raft. Conversely, be prepared to get wet when you start paddling or a bigger craft passes by.
The lightweight construction will make paddling quite tricky. Nonetheless, it performs admirably on rocky rivers and shallow lakes. Without a rudder, the Advanced Elements PackLite kayak doesn’t track well. Unfortunately, there’s no way to add a homemade rig. It’s impossible to do power strokes on the raft without experiencing a wobble. Thus, you’ll have to contend with shallow strokes. For an experienced kayaker, this may be a drawback.
Compared with other rafts in its range, the Advanced Elements PackLite kayak’s backend has relatively limited abrasion resistance. Although the raft comes with a grid of reinforcing threads, it does little to stop tearing. Even so, repairing the raft is pretty easy. You won’t even have to contact Advanced Elements. All you need to do is reinforce the affected part using a regular Gorilla Tape before applying Aquaseal around the spot.
It would help if you preemptively applied a layer of Gorilla Tape across the bottom of its back-end after purchasing the raft. This will go a long way in preventing leaks arising from abrasion when launching or paddling on shallow waters. Advanced Elements should have used more rigid material, more so at the bottom of the raft’s back-end. Besides, increasing the size of the tubes slightly would also have increased the raft’s capacity.
Pros and Cons
Our rating: 3.8 / 5
The Advanced Elements PackLite kayak may look like a miniature raft, but it punches above its weight. Be it the streamlined design or high-quality fabric, and this kayak has everything you need to spend an idyllic afternoon on a calm lake. It can be tucked away in your car’s trunk without taking up too much space, and you can also take it with you during your backpacking adventures. Setting up the raft and carrying it to and from the water is also relatively easy.
On the downside, however, this isn’t the ideal raft for someone who weighs more than 250 pounds. Finding a rhythm when paddling can be challenging since the nose tends to follow the paddle with every stroke. An experienced kayaker may not feel this, but it can be an issue of concern to a newbie kayaker. Even so, Advanced Elements PackLite is a good-quality raft that will elevate your kayaking experience.