Top 10 Best River Runner Kayaks | 2022 Reviews (Dagger)

Flo Farmer
Written by
Last update:

Kayaks are becoming more and more popular. And not just with fishing enthusiasts, but more and more outdoor lovers that want to enjoy the great outdoors while being up close and personal to the water and the scenery around them.

Kayaks are especially popular for those who enjoy paddling down rivers. The rockier the water, the more fun you get!

In a market that’s filled with countless river runner kayak models, we’ve carefully picked the ones that we think are the best in their categories.

There are many different types of river runner models to select from, so we’ve made sure to include a little bit of everything for you. Below you’ll find a description of each river runner kayak and our recommendation for each category.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What kayaks are best for Rivers?

When it comes to kayaking, a river runner kayak is the way to go.

They provide better stability than traditional sit inside kayaks and they come with lots of extras which makes them more enjoyable.

Some of the things you can expect from a river runner kayak,.

What are the best brands of kayaks?

We like Hobie Outback, Dagger, Aire Tributary, Ocean Kayak, Sevylor, Native Watercraft, Bending Branches, Wilderness Systems, and Old Town.

Are sit on top kayaks good for Rivers?

Some sit-on-top kayaks are not designed for whitewater and river running. Most of them are open cockpit and designed for kayaking in lakes, bays, and the sea. Such boats are not recommended for rapids or river running. Sit-on-top kayaks in this category are not thick or sturdy and are not stable to paddle in white water.

If you are looking for a kayak to go down the river, then you need to look for the best river runner kayaks that are suitable for rivers. In this article, we have reviewed the best river runner kayaks available on the market. You can go through the features and customer reviews of these kayaks to find the best river runner kayak for yourself.

The river runner kayaks are appropriate for both flat and fast moving rivers. Before picking one for yourself, you need to carefully make a selection after considering the features, design, and construction of the kayak.

What is the best material for a kayak?

Kayaks are made out of vinyl, plastic, fiberglass, aluminum or a combination of materials and in a range of price points.

Vinyl or plastic kayaks are the cheapest and tend to be the most durable as well. They are typically 10 feet or less in length and made to be more stable in the water. They are also slower than the other options which makes them a great choice if you are just starting out with kayaking.

Fiberglass and aluminum are the best kayaks but also the most expensive. Fiberglass kayaks are the lightest and fastest of all the types of kayaks. In an aluminum kayak, the body is made from aluminum which makes them more stable in the water but also heavier. An aluminum kayak will be more durable, but fiberglass is lighter and faster. When you are first starting out, a fiberglass kayak is a good choice.


A great kayak should be more than just an empty shell for you to put on top of water. If you come across one of the big box stores, you’ll notice they have a lot of selections at decent prices. They might give you the feeling that a kayak is just a bucket to sit in and paddle around the lake. While you can get this experience on an inexpensive model, the more you put in your boat, the more you can get out of the experience.

Our Recommendation