The Ultimate Guide to Hobie Pedal Kayaks

The Ultimate Guide to Hobie Kayaks for 2023

If you’re reading this, then you’ve probably heard of Hobie kayaks. Or, maybe you haven’t heard of Hobie kayaks and you’re looking to learn! Either way, you’ve come to the right place because we’re here to help.

Hobie is known for creating top-of-the-line paddling kayaks. They’re a reputable brand that’s been around for years – they’re even responsible for the invention of pedal kayaks!

If you’re searching for a new kayak to purchase and you’re considering a Hobie kayak, read on. There are many important factors to consider when buying a kayak, such as size, shape, storage, functionality, and more.

We’ve created the ultimate guide to Hobie kayaks so that your next kayak purchase can be your best purchase ever.

What’s Special about Hobie Kayaks?

Hobie kayaks are pedal kayaks which means they use a different propulsion method than standard kayaks. Pedal kayaks replace the paddles with a foot-controlled pedaling system.

This makes using a kayak almost hands-free, and therefore very simple to use. There are two types of pedal drive;

Benefits of Hobie Kayaks

There are many benefits of Hobie kayaks which makes them a great option for all kayakers. They’re fast, they’re hands-free, they’re beginner friendly and they have even more benefits.


Hobie kayaks are quite fast since it’s easy to gain and maintain momentum with your feet.

The pedaling system also allows you to maintain high speed over long distances without getting tired. You don’t need as much effort to propel the kayak as you would when paddling.


Since you are powering your kayak with your feet, your hands are free to cast, use the rudder, or even maintain the balance of the kayak. It’s why fishing in a pedal kayak is becoming more popular and why photographers choose pedal kayaks.

Beginner Friendly

It can take time and effort to master paddling a standard kayak. For Hobie pedal kayaks, you just need to know how to cycle.

Even on your first try, with a Hobie kayak, you’ll be kayaking like a pro in no time.


When compared to the paddling system, Hobie kayaks are quite stable. Whether you kayak on a calm lake or choppier water, they are designed to offer the utmost stability.

Hobie kayaks also make moving in reverse or in difficult areas easier. This is thanks to their kick-back turbo fins, and the MirageDrive and MirageDrive 180 systems.

The MirageDrive

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B0BJ131J4D&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=modernmedia03 20&language=en UShobie mirage drive

Hobie kayaks use a propulsion system called the MirageDrive. The MirageDrive features a pedal at the cockpit and powerful fins under the kayak. With each stroke, the fins move sideways, propelling the kayak in the appropriate direction.

The MirageDrive is also light and flexible making it easy to maneuver the kayak. Hobie kayak fins are also ideal for kayaking in shallow waters.

Hobie Kayak Buying Guide

Hobie has many amazing kayaks to offer and we’ll break those down shortly. But the most important thing to consider is that kayaks are not one size fits all.

Rather, each person has a kayak that is perfect for them and their needs. Certain things can dictate which Hobie kayak is right for you. And lucky for you, we’re here to explain them all!

Purpose of the Kayak

The first thing you should ask yourself is what will you be using your Hobie kayak for?

Are you a leisure kayaker or a pro fisherman? Do you need storage for your photography supplies or a seat for your partner?

Understanding what you will use your Hobie kayak for is the first step to understanding which kayak will suit your needs.


When choosing a kayak, you have to consider your body weight and body size. Checking the maximum capacity that each kayak can carry is the first step for sizing. Considering your height is the second.

Sure, pedal cranks and kayak seats can be adjusted. But for maximum efficiency and comfort, you’ll need a Hobie kayak that fits you.


Some pedal kayaks are long and narrow, while others are short and wide.

When going into wide lakes and oceans, a long kayak, such as the Mirage Revolution 16, will serve you well. If you’re going into narrow river channels, the Mirage Revolution 11 would be better.

Shorter kayaks are easy to turn in sharp corners but they can’t cover large distances.


If you’re planning to operate your kayak alone, a smaller kayak will work fine. However, there are tandem pedal kayaks for two. Consider if friends or family will be joining your kayak adventures before you make your decision.

Fishing Accessories

If you plan to fish during your kayaking session, you’ll need to look for a kayak that has mounting areas.

Hobie Kayaks have mounting rails for fishing accessories and other gadgets such as electronics. Their h-rail will also keep your accessories safe in rough waters. Plus, with Hobie kayaks, you can purchase add-ons to make kayaking more fulfilling.

Storage Areas

Whether you’re fishing, exercising, or relaxing, you’ll need some storage space to store your cargo.

Larger kayaks such as the Revo 16′ have ample space. However, Hobie kayaks have storage space even in their smaller kayaks such as in the Pro Angler series.

Consider your storage needs to guide your Hobie kayak purchase decision. Decide whether you need storage for a snack, or for your entire tackle box and fishing rods.


Picking a kayak with a comfortable seat will help you enjoy your kayaking even more and stretch out your days on the water.

Hobie Pedal Kayaks are equipped with Vantage CT adjustable seats which are known for comfort. Their adjustability allows you to tweak them to ensure it’s comfortable for you, no matter your needs or the activities you engage in.


Water bodies are not always calm. There may be waves or strong wind that could destabilize your kayak. You need to look for a kayak that assures stability even in harsh conditions.

Luckily, Hobie pedal kayaks have either the rudder or the skeg to ensure stability. These two features compensate for the force that’s being exerted by wind, making it easier to control your kayak. The skeg and rudder are also retractable; you can deploy and withdraw them when you need to.


Generally, pedal kayaks are quite expensive. But we’ve already described how they’re worth their cost.

There are other factors related to costs, such as shipping or transportation costs. Kayaks that are large and heavy will need a trailer for transportation. You also need to check the accessories you need to add for your specific activities, and how much they cost in addition to the cost of the kayak.

Hobie Kayak Models

Hobie has over 20 models of kayaks within many different series. But don’t worry, It’s not that complicated to choose the right model for you.

We’ve created a list of the best Hobie kayaks you should consider. Pair this list with the buying tips we shared above, and you should have no trouble choosing your new Hobie kayak!

Hobie’s Passport Kayak Series

The passport kayak series from Hobie is one of their most popular. Known for power and maneuverability, you can’t go wrong with a Hobie Passport kayak.

Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5’ Kayak

The Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5′ Pedal Fishing Kayak was launched in 2019. It’s one of the lightest and most efficient of the Mirage Passport pedal kayaks series, and features the following benefits:

You may underestimate this pedal kayak because of the fins, but it’s surprisingly fast. The Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5’ kayak is made out of light, yet durable materials which make it great for transport.

Overall, this is a great kayak for both leisure and fishing. With the adjustable pedal crank, this kayak can be used by kids, teenagers, and even adults. If you want more info, read our in-depth review of the Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5.

Hobie Mirage Passport 12.0’ Kayak

The Hobie Mirage Passport 12.0’ kayak is another great option from Hobie’s Passport series. A step up from the Mirage Passport 10.5, the 12.0 is versatile enough to take you on any adventure you desire.

The extra 1.5 feet in length allows the kayak to hold more weight without compromising speed or efficiency. It also includes more mounting accessories, an EVA padded standing platform, and more fishing-focused features.

If you’re looking to upgrade your fishing excursions, the Hobie Mirage Passport 12.0’ is a great kayak for you.

Hobie’s Pro Angler Kayaks Series

The Hobie’s Mirage Pro Angler series is the Rolls Royce of pedal kayak fishing. These kayaks are equipped with all features necessary for fishing, including the reversible mirage drive mechanism, ample storage for your gear, and an H-Rail system for mounting your accessories.

Plus, they have one of the best seating systems for kayaks in the market thanks to their famous Vantage ST adjustable seating system.

There are two models in this series: Mirage Pro Angler 12 and Mirage Pro Angler 14.

Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 12

The Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 12 is the smaller option for the Mirage Pro Angler series. But don’t let the smaller size fool you, its performance matches its 14-foot counterpart.

The unique feature in the Pro Angler series is the kickback turbo fins. Besides making these kayaks faster, it makes them efficient in maneuvering shallow waters. When the fins meet a log or kelp, they “kick back” and propel the kayak forward.

Unlike the Hobie Passport which has a rudder, the Hobie Pro Angler uses a skeg that you can deploy when it’s windy and retract when you don’t need it anymore. Plus, you can mount up to six rod holders on this kayak and you can stand as you cast – making the Pro Angler a fisherman’s dream kayak.

Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14

Let us introduce the ultimate fishing Hobie kayak.

If you’re looking for stealth, ample storage room, great performance, and comfortability, the Mirage Pro Angler 14 is for you. Considering you can stand to cast for fish of any size, its stability is to be admired.

The Vantage ST seat is also slightly raised to make it more comfortable. The slightly larger size allows you to store more than the Pro Angler 12.

It also features a retractable transducer shield. Transducers are essentially the “cheat code” in pedal kayaks as they help in fish finding. The shield protects the transducer from damage caused by objects in the water but retracts to facilitate easy transportation.

Hobie’s Islands Kayak

If you’re a kayaker who’s interested in sailing, the Hobie Mirage Tandem Island is the kayak for you. Powered by an expansive mainsail, the Tandem Island cuts through waters with ease as the wind blows.

The Tandem Island Hobie kayak has dual MirageDrive 180 systems that allow you and a passenger to drive the kayak – forward or in reverse. With kick-up fins that automatically retract when an obstacle is detected and deploy when the coast is clear, power is the main focus.

Plus, it features all the usual high-end Hobie benefits: twist and seal hatches, large storage options, Vantage CT seating, and optimal rudder control.

Hobie’s Mirage Revolution Series

If you’re into speed, these are some of the fastest Hobie kayaks. They have the reversible 180 MirageDrive system and are built out of light yet durable materials making them resilient, even in the harshest conditions.

These kayaks have two-rod holders, a large storage area, and an adjustable Vantage CT seating system for comfort. There are two kayaks in this series:

You can’t go wrong with a Hobie Mirage Revolution kayak. However, there’s sure to be one that suits your needs best.

Hobie Mirage Revolution 11

The Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 is the smallest of the Hobie Mirage Revolution series, which makes it faster with higher maneuverability. This allows you to travel through the most remote parts of water bodies with ease.

It’s also super light, as the hull is constructed out of light polyethylene and has a hull weight of about 29 kg. It’s easy to transport and move in and out of the water.

All the features available in other models can be found in this kayak but at a reduced size and weight. For instance, it has built-in rod holders, storage hatches, and a large storage area. The Mirage Revolution 11 also has a rudder that you can deploy and retract when you need to.

Hobie Mirage Revolution 13

Also known as the “Revo13”, the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 is slightly larger than the Mirage Revolution 11. It has a built-in dual rod holder and a large storage area. Like all other revolution kayaks, it has reversible kickback fins. The Revo 13 is also equipped with a paddle for those who would love to switch from pedaling to paddling.

And it’s not just for fishing; you can push this kayak even to the toughest of waters for exploration and leisure. With a retractable rudder and the Lowrance Ready System transducer mounts, you’ll be safe wherever your adventures take you.

Plus, it’s not that heavy. With a hull weight of about 32 kg, you can easily transport it without a trailer.

Ready to kayak?

Hobie kayaks are known for making pedal kayaking popular among anglers. The benefits of Hobie kayaks largely outweigh their competitors, with increased speed, comfort, stability, and ease of use.

Hobie pedal kayaks have evolved over the years, with Hobie offering kayaks of many shapes, sizes, functions, and storage options. Whether you’re looking for a fishing vessel or a relaxing watercraft, Hobie will have a kayak for you.

The Hobie Mirage Passport 10.5′ Pedal Fishing Kayak is one of the best kayaks for general use. However, there are others that may be better suited for your needs. And thanks to our Hobie kayak buying guide, you have all the information. You just need to make a decision!

See you on the water!

Article Author
Robert Walker has been a Kayak enthusiast for over a decade. He's owned several different Kayak's, but only recently got into Pedal Kayaks in the last few years. This website is Robert's way of sharing his passion for Pedal Kayak's with the world.