This is a review of the Ocean Kayak Frenzy – a one-person sit-on-top kayak.
The Frenzy is an affordable kayak that’s incredibly versatile. It’s a lot of fun to paddle around in, whether you’re cruising across a lake, taking on some easy rapids, or playing in the surf.
I’d recommend the Ocean Kayak Frenzy for beginners looking for a fun, easy-to-use kayak, as well as experienced paddlers who want a compact, maneuverable kayak.
In this review, I’ll look at the pros and cons of the Frenzy, what other users love about it, and compare it to a popular alternative kayak.
Keep reading to find out if the Frenzy is the kayak for you.
Ocean Kayak Frenzy Pros and Cons
Who Should Buy the Ocean Kayak Frenzy?
The Frenzy is a “do it all” kayak that’s suitable for beginner and more experienced paddlers. It’s equally at home on rivers, lakes and the sea – perfect if you enjoy a bit of everything.
The Ocean Kayak Frenzy is also a great choice if you’re looking for a kayak to suit the whole family. Its compact size and great stability make it ideal for kids or adults who are nervous on the water, and the hull design allows you to nest multiple kayaks together for easy storage at home.
Is there anything the Frenzy can’t do?
It’s not the best kayak for white water, and there isn’t enough storage for multi-day trips. The Frenzy is all about fun, laid-back paddling. If you’re looking for top-class performance, be prepared to dig deeper into your wallet.
I also wouldn’t recommend the Frenzy kayak if you’re taller than six feet. It’ll take your weight, but you’ll be restricted in how far you can stretch out your legs. A longer kayak will be more comfortable.
Features of the Frenzy Kayak
Let’s take a closer look at the stand out features of the Frenzy, and discover what makes this kayak stand out against other kayaks on the market.
Unlike traditional kayaks, which have an enclosed cockpit, the Frenzy has an open cockpit. You sit on top of the kayak, which means you don’t have to worry about getting trapped in the boat if you capsize.
The sit-on-top design also makes it easier to get in and out of the water, for example, if you’re using the kayak for scuba diving, and provides a stable platform for fishing.
Ocean Kayak’s renowned tri form hull delivers the holy grail of performance for beginner kayakers – stability and performance. The full-length keel helps keep the kayak moving in a straight line and the rounded “shoulders” stop it from tipping over.
The hull design also allows for you to stack up to three Frenzy kayaks together – handy if you’re short on storage space.
Molded footwells don’t have the precise level of adjustment that you get with foot braces, but they make it really easy to adjust your foot position on the move. However comfortable the kayak is, I find I need to stretch out every now and then to prevent my legs from cramping up.
The footwells in the Ocean Kayak Frenzy allow for five foot positions making it suitable for those with short and long legs.
Size and Weight
As a compact kayak, the Frenzy is best suited to “compact” people. Although it’s a wide boat, the seat is narrow for larger butts, and if you have long legs, you may find your knees come halfway up to your chin.
At 43 pounds, the Frenzy is lighter than most solid-hull kayaks. Its size and weight make it fairly easy for solo kayakers to load onto a vehicle or carry to the water’s edge.
The Frenzy performs way above its price tag. Let’s take a look at what makes it great.
The tri-hull design and wide base of the Frenzy make it super stable. In flat water, it’s almost impossible to capsize, and even if you’re playing in the surf, you can throw the kayak around without worrying about flipping it.
If you choose to jump into the water, it’s easy to get back on board. While the Frenzy kayak isn’t specifically designed for you to stand up on (e.g. for fishing), I’m pretty sure it’s stable enough for you to give it a go.
This is where the Frenzy excels. It’s super responsive and turns on a dime, making it a joy for playing in the surf or exploring complex bays and coastlines. The Frenzy’s maneuverability also makes it a great choice for kayaking small waters or taking on your friends in a game of canoe polo or tag.
Short kayaks often suffer when it comes to tracking, so I was impressed at how well the Frenzy performed in both calm and choppy conditions. The deep keel helps it track straight and even when the wind picked up, the kayak didn’t spin.
If there’s one aspect of performance in which the Ocean Kayak Frenzy is found wanting, it’s speed. The Frenzy is a very wide boat, which makes it incredibly stable, but also makes it slower in the water.
Honestly, I don’t feel that this is a major downside. The only time when speed is really important is if you’re racing, and if that’s the level of performance you’re after, you’re going to need to spend a lot more than $500.
The Frenzy kayak has a molded polyethylene hull that comes with a lifetime warranty. Although I’d always recommend taking good care of your equipment, it’ll stand up well to general use and abuse. In fact, it’s almost indestructible.
This makes the Frenzy a great choice for playing about in rocky waters. You can hand it over to your kids without worrying about costly repair jobs.
With a max weight capacity of 325 pounds, you don’t have to worry about the Frenzy sinking under your weight. If you’re on the heavier side, you may just find that your butt gets wet as water doesn’t drain off the seat.
There are two open storage areas on the Frenzy, both with shock cords to keep your kit in place. There’s also a molded drinks cup holder in front of the sea, but I’d have preferred it if this space was used for a sealed storage bin where you could safely stash your car keys or phone.
Comfort Plus Seat
A lot of budget kayaks have you plant your butt directly on the plastic molding. Fortunately, Ocean Kayak takes comfort into consideration and provides an adjustable padded seat.
It would be nice if the seat cushion had a bit more padding, but this very much comes down to personal preference. You can always upgrade the seat if you’re planning on spending long periods in the kayak.
The Ocean Kayak Frenzy is equipped with scupper holes to allow water to drain out from the cockpit. If you’re a heavier person, you may find that water comes up through the scupper holes. To prevent this, you can buy scupper plugs to plug the holes.
The Frenzy is equipped with two molded side handles plus handles at the bow and stern. These make it easy to maneuver the kayak into or on top of vehicles and to carry to and from the water.
What Paddlers Are Saying about the Ocean Kayak Frenzy
The Ocean Kayak Frenzy is highly reviewed on Amazon, Rei and Paddling.com. Users love the stability and how well it tracks. One Amazon reviewer used his Frenzy to escape his home after a hurricane with a forty-pound aquaphobic dog on board – if that’s not a true test of a kayak, I don’t know what is!
Other paddlers praise the versatility of the kayak. In reply to One Redditor who asked for advice on buying an inexpensive sea kayak for recreational paddling and fishing in Florida, Jeff89jdf recommended the Frenzy for flat water and snorkeling around the shoreline.
Ocean Kayak Frenzy alternatives
a) Ocean Kayak Frenzy vs Ocean Kayak Scrambler
Take the Frenzy kayak and stretch it out a bit and you have the Ocean Kayak Scrambler. This 11-foot kayak is slightly narrower than the Frenzy and six pounds heavier. Despite the difference in length, both kayaks have the same seat width and legroom.
When you sit on top of the Scrambler, you get the same feeling of stability as with the Frenzy. The two craft are very similar, so choosing between the two comes down to prioritizing what you’re most likely to use your kayak for.
The extra length on the Scrambler makes it better at dealing with swells and choppy water. It makes a great platform for fishing or scuba diving and will be faster and more comfortable for extended periods.
If you’re playing in the surf, the Frenzy will be easier to maneuver and less likely to flip. As it’s shorter and lighter, it will also be simpler to transport and store.
Both kayaks have open storage areas with bungee cords in the bow and stern, but the Scrambler also has a covered storage bucket in front of the seat for small items. This isn’t guaranteed to be waterproof but it’s a handy place to stash your phone or car keys (in a dry bag!) to make sure you don’t lose them over the side.
Check out the Ocean Kayak Scrambler here.
|Ocean Kayak Frenzy||Ocean Kayak Scrambler|
|Length||9 feet||11 feet 6.5 inches|
|Width||31 inches||29.5 inches|
|Weight||43 pounds||49 pounds|
|Capacity||275-325 pounds||300-350 pounds|
|Best For||Surfing, short trips, rapids||Extended paddling, fishing, scuba diving|
It’s hard to find a budget kayak with decent performance, but the Ocean Kayak Frenzy fits the bill. The kayak’s great stability and maneuverability make it a great choice for beginner and more experienced paddlers.
The Frenzy is equally at home on small waters and in rocky bays as playing in the surf. It’s designed to have fun and built to last a lifetime.