Hobie, a name normally associated with lightweight catamarans, have added pedal-driven flippers to their enclosed hull kayak design enabling hands-free propulsion or the option of using all four appendages to drive the craft through the water. The sturdily constructed pedal/flipper mechanism operates like a penguin's fins - swinging laterally underneath the hull as you pedal to produce surprisingly fast forward momentum. Steering is via a hand-controlled rudder that can be retracted to the horizontal when not in use and the cockpit drains through scuppers as the kayak moves along. The SUV "Mirage Outback" model is designed for fishing and includes rod holders, storage compartments for diving tanks or cooler. Anchor system and a sail rig can also be added. Available in Australia at Great Outdoors Centre, the Mirage Outback costs AUS$2150 and the sail rig AUS$450. Phone 02 4421 4388 for more information.
About the Author
Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks.
All articles by Mike Hanlon