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The 2011 Hobie Oasis

Written by Paul Belmudes
Saturday, 27 November 2021 05:42

Tweaking My New Hobie Oasis for Kayak Fishing

My story on "Changing My Ride to the Hobie Oasis" shared my evolution of kayak models for kayak fishing. After several test runs in the last 30 days, I finally have enough on-the-water experience to gossip about my new 2011 Hobie Oasis. Let me start off by saying that my last ride was fantastic. My only complaint about the Hobie Revolution was the fish storage when boating 25 to 50 pound pelagic. With that said, the main reason I chose the Oasis was to solve the fish storage problem. Did I give up a great ride (Hobie Revolution) to settle on a tandem kayak in which the majority of my time kayak fishing will be soloing? YES!  Is my fish storage problem resolved? YES! Does the Oasis pass all my kayak fishing expectations? Yes and No... so let me share with you why.

I'm not going to cover the features, dimensions and weight of the Oasis in this article. If you want them, you can go to Hobie's site directly. What I'm going to share is my likes and dislikes on the Oasis. I have yet to tandem with the Oasis so I will only be discussing solo kayak fishing. I've tried sitting on the front half of the kayak only to learn that I will never sit there again. I sat up front to test the buoyancy and steering of the craft. I put 50 extra pounds in the rear using a dumbell in a dry bag to keep the kayak level and give better rudder control. The balance was decent and I still moved quickly in comparison to the Revo... but the Oasis steering is poor.

Even sitting in the aft seat, the problem remains. It seems that if there is a strong current and you are in a turn, the rudder will not stay in its place even if my hand remains on the steering arm in a locked position. I have since made several adjustments to the steering rope tied to the rudder at the end of the day, but the steering problem remains. The radius turn is very poor on the Oasis. I'm not saying that its impossible to turn, I just have a comparison from another Hobie product (Revolution). When I was fighting a fish the other day, I lost control of the steering in a strong current and I did not like being perpendicular when fighting the fish.

Loading the Oasis on my Nissan Pathfinder is very difficult because there is not a centered grip/handle to lift it up onto the SUV. The 2 handles on the Oasis are to spread apart to get a good grip. The solution would be to add a center gip/handle which I have put off since I am trying to keep drilled holes on the kayak to the minimal. To this date, I have 11 drilled holes in the kayak for mounting the Spring Creek Stabilizer cross arms behind each seat (8) and my Humminbird 343c fishfinder (2) on my one-inch ram ball fishfinder mount. Plus a 5/8 inch hole (1) for the rubber grommet to seal the wiring for the fishfinder.

I definitely don't have the buoyancy dialed in when fishing from the back. I've tried adding 50 extra pounds to the front of the kayak to keep it from slapping against the bow. Cutting trough the water is very important and when I find the right weight to add up front, my ride will get better. I am also trying to keep the rudder from being to deep in the water with my body weight being so far back when sitting in the aft position.

Sailing speed in comparison to the Revolution is the same when at full sail. Notice on the video that having my rods up front or behind me do not get in the way of the mainsheet line and furl system. My optimum setup for my rod holders while under sail will be up front behind the front seat using Scotty Rod holders mounted on a one inch square aluminum tube inserted into the Spring Creek stabilizer cross bar. This will enable me to spread out my rod holders if I choose to do so and give accessibility to those sitting up front when tandem fishing.

What I like best about the Oasis is the peace of mind of knowing that I will be safe out there when fishing. It's the Hobie name that stands behind the product. It's the fish storage that I have gained. No more worrying that a shark is going to take the back end off the fish... now there is room for the big ones and the weight to carry them back to shore.

Is it a complete kayak that has everything I want out of a kayak? No... but it's a fine one ready to handle most situations out there... once I dial in the steering problem! Would I recommend the 2011 Oasis? Definitely.{mos_fb_discuss:5}