A couple of months ago I started to put together a pack list for the Murray Trip. That night, for some strange reason, I woke up at about 2am and had a horrible thought that I would not be able to fit everything into either of our kayaks (the Barracuda Enigma or the Mirage 532). I have used both of these boats for multi-day trips before but they were always stuffed to the brim and there are a number of extra things I would need for the 2 months on the Murray (extra clothes, food, camera gear etc.). So the next day, I got all the gear together and tried packing it into both of the boats (which are very similar in size). To my horror, it did not all fit.
So after a bit of research, I decided that I was going to invest in a bigger boat and I decided on the Mirage 582 (5.8m long). This is a similar design to our Mirage 532 (5.3m long) but the extra 50cm in length gives it a much larger storage capacity (an extra 50litres). This is a comparison of the specifications:
|Mirage 582||Mirage 532|
|Length||580 cm||530 cm|
|Weight||18 kg||17 kg|
|Total Storage||197 litres||145 litres|
|Front Hatch||80 litres||50 litres|
|Day Hatch||27 litres||25 litres|
|Rear Hatch||90 litres||70 litres|
The following day, I drove up to the Mirage factory at Gosford and had a chat to Dave about the specifications of the boat, because there are a number of features you can add to the boat and I figured that I should properly kit it out and set it up the way I want. And with that I had ordered my new kayak.
It is now 2 months later and I have just picked up the new kayak and taken it for her maiden paddle. It is fantastic. The extra length makes the boat faster and it glides a whole lot better. It was completely empty when I paddled it, so it was riding fair high in the water, but I can imagine it is going to be even better with a bit of gear in it.
Here are some of the features of the boat (some standard and some additions).
I must give a big thanks to the team at Mirage for getting the boat finished just before the Christmas shut down period. I am looking forward to spending a lot of time over Summer in this new boat.