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Mon, Sep 26, 2016
Wilderness Systems "Tarpon 130X"

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Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130X

Kayak Make & Model

Brand:
Wilderness Systems
Model:
Tarpon 130X
MSRP ($):
1,300.00
Length (ft):
13

The "Tarpon 130X" by Wilderness Systems has all the speed of previous model Tarpon fishing kayak but with upgraded features to fit many different angling styles. The Tarpon 130X has the versatile Flex Pod OS allowing the owner to easily switch out their electronics with other Wilderness Systems kayaks, or add a hands free fishing option with a Torqeedo motor. The 130X also has the new AirPro MAX seat with forward and aft adjustment to keep the fishing kayak perfectly trimmed. 

Specs:

  • Length 13” / 396 cm
  • Width 32" / 81 cm
  • Deck Height 16” / 41 cm
  • Weight 72 lb. / 33 kg
  • Capacity 375 lb. / 170 kg

Photos

Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x handle
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x Outdoor Retailer 2015
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x FlexPod Motor
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x Secondary Transducer Scupper
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x handle paddle park
Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130x AirProMax Seat

User reviews

2 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.7
Speed 
 
5.0  (2)
Stability 
 
4.5  (2)
Durability 
 
4.5  (2)
Features 
 
5.0  (2)
Value 
 
4.5  (2)
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Ratings (the higher the better)
Speed
Stability
Durability
Features
Value
User Info
Pros & Cons
Comments
(Updated: June 09, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Speed 
 
5.0
Stability 
 
5.0
Durability 
 
5.0
Features 
 
5.0
Value 
 
5.0

Tarpon 130x Review From the Water

I just bought a Tarpon 130x. Here is a synopsis of my experience after 7 outings. It is very stable and the seat is great. The layout is great and everything is convenient for reaching. It has a great rail system with unlimited options for placing sonar and GPS. Dry storage is good with great sealable hatches...WS is great when it comes to reliable hatch covers. The boat tracks straight even in the wind. I took it out in 30MPH winds in a really wide part of a large impoundment and it did great. It will be an awesome boat to vertical fish this winter and fall. It is stable and comfortable enough to use heavy fishing techniques such as a Carolina rig. It is really easy to turn with a paddle without a rudder...at least as easy as my Tarpon 120. It is a little slower than the Tarpon 120 to get up to speed but once you're there it is a hair faster than the Tarpon 140. It is built to last and will be great for fishing. It is not as sluggish as the Tarpon 140 and is the perfect hybrid between the 120 and 140. The seat is really comfortable...However, it is at a different angle in the boat than previous Tarpon models and it gives you a more stable platform to set the hook on fish. You won't figure this out until you hooked a sizable fish...then you'll "get it" in a good way...After fishing the other 2 Tarpons for a long time I kind of grinned when I caught my first striper...once you reel in the fish you know everything is where it needs to be on the boat...

I have all three boats and did a side by side comparison.

The rails for the foot pegs are kind of flimsy but they're just like on all Tarpons. The reviews and videos say it is a fast boat but it takes effort to get it up to speed compared to my Tarpon 120. It sometimes felt slightly sluggish but not as much as the 140 model. When you do get it up to speed...not too difficult...due to the holes in the hull, molded for the optional motor and sonar transducer, the boat produces a sound like washing machine or water slapping the side of a boat and it is loud. I called my dealer and he is trying to come up with some plugs for the holes to silence the sound. If you fish the flats around Florida in this kayak you'll need it to be really quiet because the fish are so spooky. With the noise the boat currently produces you'll never get within 200 yards of fish. This needs to be solved by WS and marketed as an option for the boat...

I'll follow up with another post when I hear from the dealer.

Overall I love the kayak and with more outings I'm sure I'll love it more...especially if they introduce a pedal drive system for it.

I gave the boat 5 stars because the total package is what I believe fishermen want in a kayak....I know it is perfect for what I want...an updated version of the Tarpon 120 with the tracking of a 140 and loads of comfort features like the seat and options for sonar...Nothing is perfect but WS has come pretty close with the 130x...


Pros & Cons

Pros:
Stable, Tracks great, Fast once up and going, Great layout, Great storage, Quality built, Cross between Tarpon 120 and 140 with added stability, Great for fishing and comfort with a wonderful seat! Your lower back will thank you!
Cons:
The rails for the foot pegs are kind of flimsy but they're just like on all Tarpons, takes effort to get it up to speed compared to my Tarpon 120, Makes a sloshing sound when up to speed.
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Overall rating 
 
4.4
Speed 
 
5.0
Stability 
 
4.0
Durability 
 
4.0
Features 
 
5.0
Value 
 
4.0

First impressions of the Tarpon 130X

I was lucky enough to have a chance to paddle the new Wilderness Systems Tarpon 130X earlier this month. This was just my initial impressions as it was only a quick demo and I didn't get to fish out of it.

The first big change you will notice is the new AirPro Lite seat. No longer are you sitting on the deck like the old Tarpon 130 models. The seat is extremely comfortable but there is no high low option, you have forward and aft adjustments to get your trim just right.

The boat is fast and has great glide, it still feels like the quick Tarpons of the past. I did notice that it has a little bit more flair than the older Tarpon models, this gives it a little more stability and I assume a little more weight capacity. Did I say it's fast?

The basic deck layout if very similar to the original Tarpon 130s but the tankwell is slightly different, it has more tie down points and reminds me of the Thresher. The biggest change of the deck was the addition of the Wilderness Systems FlexPod. They didn't have the motor installed but I can only imagine how fast this thing will fly with the Torqeedo installed. I can't wait until Wilderness Systems comes out with a pedal drive system that works with the FlexPods (You know it's coming!).

Great improvements on an original that was already great.

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