Home » Lifetime Kayaks Review 2021 (Tamarack, Guster, Lotus, Cruze, Payette)

Lifetime Kayaks Review 2021 (Tamarack, Guster, Lotus, Cruze, Payette)

Lifetime Kayaks cover image

Lifetime Angler Kayaks

Lifetime is a Kayak manufacturer that makes high-quality fishing and paddling kayaks at affordable prices. Whether you’re a beginner, advanced angler, child, or adult, there’s a kayak offered to suit your needs.

When searching for products from this manufacturer, it’s important to know that Emotion and Lifetime kayaks are actually the same brand. While they have different names slapped onto their respective products, considering both companies’ equipment is a smart idea.

Understanding Kayak Options

There are two popular types of fishing kayaks. Sit-on-top kayaks can be easier to cast from, but they aren’t great at protecting you from splashing water. They can be extremely stable and great for fishing, but only use them on calm water bodies. Sit-inside kayaks have the opposite qualities of sit-on-top models.

It’s also important to know what qualities you care about when making a purchase decision. Some kayaks, like the Emotion Guster, are designed for comfort and affordability. Other models, such as the Lifetime Payette, prioritize speed and performance.

Whether you have criteria in mind or are at the beginning of your search, we’re here to help. In this guide, we’ll be reviewing Lifetime’s top five kayaks in 2020 and discussing each one’s characteristics. We’re confident that by the end of this article, you’ll know which model is right for you.

Lifetime Tamarack – Best sit-on-top fishing kayak

Lifetime Tamarack green sit-on-top fishing kayak

The Lifetime Tamarack is extremely stable and easy to fish with. All kayaks on this list are high-quality, but this one, in particular, is extra durable and impact resistant. Given this increase in build-quality, it’s very lightweight and easy to transport.

With an average of 4.2 stars on Amazon, it’s clear anglers have enjoyed this product. It is more expensive than other models, but we think it’s well worth the money.

Our one complaint is that the seat pad is a bit thin. If you decide to get this kayak, you might consider finding or purchasing a cushion to use in addition to the one built-in. Lifetime designed this sit-on-top kayak with a priority on performance rather than comfort.

This kayak has a ton of “extra features” that we don’t have time to discuss in this guide. We’ve compiled a list of these qualities and other information about the Tamarack.

Tamarack Specs

  • 120″ Adult Kayak
  • 275 lb Maximum Weight Limit
  • 52 lb Design
  • UV-Protected High-Density Polyethylene
  • Stable Flat Bottom
  • Deep Hull Tracking Channels
  • Stability Chine Rails
  • 5-Year Limited Warranty

Tamarack Features List

  • Multiple Footrest Positions (Different Size Riders)
  • Adjustable Padded Seat Back and Pad for Comfort
  • Front and Rear Shock Cord Straps
  • (2x) Flush Mounted Fishing Rod Holders
  • Top Mount Fishing Rod Holder
  • (2x) Storage Compartments in Rear and Center
  • (2x) Paddle Cradles with Shock Cords
  • Front and Rear T-Handles for Transportation

Emotion Guster – Most affordable & comfortable

Emotion Guster orange sit-in kayak

To start, it’s important to know why this kayak is featured on a list of Lifetime Kayaks. Many aren’t aware that the manufacturers Emotion and Lifetime are actually part of the same brand. For this reason, and to give our readers a complete full-picture review, the Emotion Guster has been reviewed by our team.

The Emotion Guster was designed to prioritize comfort and is sold at an affordable price on Amazon. Feel free to read the reviews that have averaged 4.5 stars for confirmation of the product’s quality.

Stability is a stand-out feature of the Guster. It’s one of the best-priced kayaks that can be used in the ocean and saltwater environments. Less than ideal conditions are not a problem for this bright orange kayak.

Overall, this is a great option for both paddling and fishing. It has a lightweight design and is also packed full of useful features.

Guster Specs

  • 48 lb Design
  • 275 lb Weight Capacity
  • ST Performance Hull for Tracking and Stability
  • Added Storage Beneath the Deck

Guster Features List

  • Adjustable Padded Seat Back & Seat Pad
  • Front and Rear Shock Cord Straps to Secure Loose Items
  • Front and Rear Handles for Easy Transport
  • Oval Hatch

Lifetime Lotus – Most practical sit-on-top kayak

Lifetime Lotus blue sit-on-top kayak

The Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak is effortless to paddle because of how buoyant it is. This is one of the best kayaks for beginners of all ages, even outside of the Lifetime lineup. With tremendous stability, it’s not easy to flip this thing. But if you manage to do this (which is difficult), it flips back over in seconds, making it very safe.

Lifetime’s Lotus is easily the least intimidating or most approachable kayak on the market. This is true for people of all ages, from kids to adults and beginners to experienced kayakers.

This is not an inexpensive kayak; it’s one of Lifetime’s premium products. However, if you’re willing to spend the money, it’s a joy to use out on the water. With an average of 4.4 stars on Amazon, there are plenty of satisfied customers to back up our claims.

Lotus Specs

  • Polyethylene
  • Made in the USA
  • 250 lb Weight Capacity
  • Fits 1 Child & 1 Adult or 2 Adults (Dependant on Model)
  • 8 ft and 10 ft Length Options
  • 6 ft of Legroom

Lotus Features List

  • Kayak Paddle Included
  • Adjustable Quick-Release Seat Back
  • Tank Well Storage with Bungee Cord
  • Multiple Footrest Positions
  • Center Carry Handle

Lifetime Cruze 100 – Most versatile kayak

Lifetime Cruze 100 purple sit-in kayak

You’ll notice in the image above that the Lifetime Cruze 100 is offered in some great color options. This kayak features a large opening with tons of space inside the cockpit. It’s the most “roomy” sit-inside kayak Lifetime offers, unlike other models that fit snug around one’s legs.

The best way to characterize this design is Lifetime’s effort to balance comfort and performance. It features deep hull channels for tracking performance but also has chine rails for increased stability.

For many people, this is an ideal combination. It doesn’t have rod holders like other kayaks, but there’s plenty of interior space to store your rods while out on the water. If you’re looking for versatility and a kayak that can meet all your needs, this is a fantastic product.

Cruze Specs

  • Deep Hull Channels (Tracking Performance)
  • Chine Rails (Stability)
  • Stable Flat Bottom Hull Design

Cruze Features List

  • Adjustable Quick Release Seat Back and Seat Pad (Comfort)
  • Multiple Footrest Positions
  • Oval Hatch for Added Storage
  • Front and Rear Toggle Handles

Lifetime Payette – Best sit-inside fishing kayak

Lifetime Payette grey sit-inside fishing kayak

You might expect Lifetime’s best sit-inside fishing kayak to be super expensive, but you’d be surprised. The Lifetime Payette is one of the more affordable kayaks on this list, but it’s also arguably the best.

Many of the high-quality features expected on this product are indeed present. The UV-protected material strongly resists cracks, fading, and peeling. The cockpit is large and spacious for comfort and additional storage. It sounds like a great piece of equipment already, but this isn’t where the list ends.

Lifetime incorporated a sharper keel for speed and tracking on this unit. They’ve managed to fully optimize the speed and performance while keeping the kayak comfortable for long outings on the water.

It also has an enclosed compartment with a lid, ideal for tackle or fish storage. With these several features plus the list that was too long to discuss in this review fully, it’s the best all-around kayak for fishermen.

As if the specs aren’t enough, Lifetime has also included a 5-year warranty for the Payette. It’s always good to see companies show confidence in their products by offering generous warranties.

Payette Specs

  • 116″ Adult Kayak
  • UV-Protected Coating
  • Blow-Molded Impact Resistant Polyethylene
  • Lightweight 44 lb Design
  • 250 lb Weight Capacity
  • Flat Bottom (Stability)
  • Sandstone Color
  • Large Cockpit
  • Deep Hull Tracking Channels
  • Stability Chine Rails
  • Sharp Keel (Speed and Tracking)
  • 5-Year Warranty

Payette Features List

  • Multiple Footrest Positions
  • Paddle Holder Shock Cord Straps
  • Easy Carry Handle
  • Enclosed Compartment with Lid
  • Shock Cord Strap
  • Paddle Holder Shock Cord Straps

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