Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak Review


Paddling / Sunday, February 14th, 2021

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If you’re looking for an extremely stable 2-person or 3-person inflatable kayak, the Sea Eagle 420x Explorer inflatable kayak is the best family kayak for versatility in adventures. The rugged design masters whitewater, flatwater, and almost everything in-between including fishing, sailing, and rowing.

No need for roof racks, a trailer, or an extra storage area in the garage. The 420x Explorer from Sea Eagle Boats deflates to the compact size of 31″ x 21″ x 10″.

Pretty cool right? It fits in a car trunk when out on adventures and in a closet at home.

For a better understanding of the whitewater rating system, visit American Whitewater.

About the Sea Eagle Explorer Series of Inflatable Kayaks

Whitewater kayaking in a Sea Eagle 420x Explorer 2-person inflatable kayak.

Sea Eagle Boats is a family-owned and run company based in New York that has been making high-quality inflatable boats since 1968 and their line of Explorer kayaks is proof of their expertise. These boats are built to handle almost any type of water… Ocean, whitewater rivers, fishing, bays, lakes, flatwater rivers, and camping.

Sea Eagle Explorer inflatable kayaks are wet or dry boats with 16 super-fast, self-bailing drain valves that can be left open to drain the waves and spray of Class IV rapids or closed for a dry and comfortable paddle on flatwater.

A second feature that allows the Explorer inflatable kayak to smoothly transition from whitewater to flatwater is a removable, slide skeg that can be slipped in place for improved tracking on open water.

The Explorer series of Sea Eagle inflatable kayaks can handle all your adventures: Touring, Whitewater, Exploring, Fishing, Camping, and more. It’s a great choice for all-around kayaking.

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Sea Eagle Explorer Inflatable Kayaks Are Best Used For:

  • Ocean
  • Whitewater Rivers
  • Fishing
  • Bays
  • Lakes
  • Flatwater Rivers
  • Camping

Top, Front and Side Views – Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

Top view of a three-person Sea Eagle 380X Explorer Inflatable Kayak.
Top View
Side view of a three-person Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak.
Side View
Front view of a three-person Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak.
Front View

Specifications – Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

(compare all Sea Eagle inflatable kayaks and canoes)

Person Capacity3
Hull Weight44 lbs
Length14′
Width3′ 3″
Interior13′ 4″ x 15″
Load Capacity3 Person or 855 lbs
D-Rings26 D-Rings
Deflated31″ x 21″ x 10″
Chambers3 (port, starboard, floor)
Tube Diameter11.5″
Air Valves3 Recessed, One-Way Air Valves
Inflation Time9 min
SeamGlued, Quadruple Overlap
Material1000 Denier Reinforced
Engine Capacity34 lb Thrust, Electric Motor (max engine weight 15 lbs)
FloorRemovable, High-Pressure, Drop-Stitch Floor
Drain Valves16 High-Capacity, Self-Bailing Drain Valves
Whitewater RatingSuitable Up to Class IV Rapids
Inflation Pressure3.2 psi

Standard Features of the Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

Portaging a Sea Eagle 420x Explorer 2-person inflatable kayak.
  • NMMA Certified
  • 16 high-capacity, self-bailing drain valves
  • Large, removable, rear skeg for improved tracking during flatwater touring
  • Front and rear spray skirts with carrying handles, storage below the skirts, and bungee cord lacing on top for securing additional gear
  • Three separate, independent air chambers (port, starboard, floor) with one-way air valves for added safety
  • Separate high-pressure, drop-stitch floor for rigidity
  • 26 D-rings to secure seats, accessories, and gear
  • Printed owner’s manual with instructions

For a wealth of additional information, check out the Sea Eagle Explorer Kayak Owner’s Manual.

Key Features of the Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Inflatable Kayak

The following three, key features of Sea Eagle Explorer inflatable kayaks deserve closer attention.

Modular, Rigid, Drop-Stitch Floor Provides Double Protection

Figure showing the Sea Eagle modular, rigid, drop stitch floor.

Sea Eagle Explorer inflatable kayaks have a unique modular design featuring an extremely rigid, high-pressure, drop-stitch floor that fits on top of an outer floor to increase structural integrity. (Note the figure above showing the Explorer kayak with and without the drop-stitch floor.)

The rigid, high-pressure, drop-stitch floor provides great rigidity yielding unparalleled responsiveness while the reinforced, outside, fabric floor provides a double layer of protection to bounce off rocks, logs, and other objects leaving the extremely durable Sea Eagle Explorer unscathed.

The creation of the drop-stitch floor involves the joining of two layers of poly-based fabric with tens of thousands of fine polyester threads. This forms the base layer of the floor to which an air-tight coating is applied. The result after inflation is a flat, rigid surface that greatly improves the stability and performance of the inflatable kayak.

The modular design also allows quick and easy removal of the drop-stitch floor for cleaning. It’s so much easier to thoroughly clean in the crevices of an inflatable kayak when the floor can be removed.

16 Rapid, Self-Bailing, Easy-To-Open & Shut Drain Valves

Sea Eagle Explorer bottom view showing its 16 rapid, self-bailing drain valves.

Sea Eagle Explorer inflatable kayaks have 16 easy-to-open and shut rapid, self-bailing, drain valves. When open, water drains out as quickly as it enters making them well suited for whitewater.

Yet, in flatwater situations, you can remain high and dry while paddling with the self-bailing drain valves closed. A very important feature when the weather or water is cold… Well, you’ll stay dry as long as you adjust your kayak paddle, drip rings properly.

Large, Removable, Rear, Center Skeg

Sea Eagle Explorer large, removable, rear, center, slide-in skeg for flatwater touring.

Another important design feature of the Sea Eagle Explorer series of inflatable kayaks is the large, removable, center skeg at the rear of the kayak which can easily be removed whether inflated or deflated to accommodate different water conditions and ease of storage.

Remove the kayak skeg for whitewater or shallow water kayaking. You don’t want to be dragging the skeg along water bottoms especially in rocky river bottoms.

For maximum paddling efficiency on flatwater, replace the skeg for reduced yawing, that annoying rotation to the left and right as you paddle. The skeg is an extremely important feature for improved tracking during long flatwater touring.

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer Discount Kayak Packages

Sailing a Sea Eagle 420x Explorer 2-person inflatable kayak.

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer kayak discount packages are designed to accommodate the needs of different types of paddlers. The basic accessories of each package are the foot pump, repair kit, kayak carrying bag, and easy-to-store kayak paddles with drip rings for staying dry.

There is room for the family dog or a third seat in the 420x Explorer making it the perfect all-around kayak for families who want to experience both flatwater and rapids up to Class IV.

The packages shown do not offer a third seat. If desired, you’ll want to add an extra seat to your order and possibly another paddle.

Related Content: Best Inflatable Kayaks and Canoes for Families

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Deluxe Kayak Package – Model 420XK_D

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak Deluxe Package, Model Number 420XK_D.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Deluxe Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_D) is a great inflatable tandem kayak package for all-around paddlers who want to experience both flatwater and rapids up to Class IV.

This tandem kayak features two inflatable kayak seats, a foot pump, repair kit, kayak carrying bag, and two easy-to-store, four-part, kayak paddles.

Want an inflatable 3-person kayak? Just add another seat. There’s room.

Features:

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Kayak Package – Model 420XK_P

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak Pro Kayak Package, Model Number 420XK_P.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_P) is a spacious inflatable 2-person kayak with two Tall Back Seats that provide extra back support for those longer outings and two four-part, high-performance, kayak paddles for improved efforts when padding.

Features:

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Carbon Kayak Package – Model 420XK_PC

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak Pro Carbon Package, Model Number 420XK_PC.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Carbon Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_PC) features everything in the Pro Kayak Package substituting a pair of upgraded, top-end, carbon-fiber paddles for the kayakers in this 2-person kayak setup.

Features:

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – QuikSail Kayak Package – Model 420XK_QS

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak, Model Number 420XK_QS.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – QuikSail Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_QS) comes with the QuikSail Universal Kayak Sail Kit. It’s a fun way to transform your kayak into a personal sailboat without the need for permanent modifications.

Features:

Related Content: Sea Eagle QuikSail Universal Kayak Sail Kits

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Motor Kayak Package – Model 420XK_PM

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak, Model Number 420XK_PM.

If you want to cover a lot of water and don’t want to overexert yourself, the Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Motor Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_PM) is the way to go.

This kayak package offers the best of both worlds… paddle for exercise and fun, or attach the electric motor and zip along in style and comfort.

Features:

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – QuikRow Kayak Package – Model 420XK_QR

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak, Model Number 420XK_QR.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – QuikRow Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_QR) offers multiple possibilities! Set it up as a 2-person inflatable kayak, buy an extra seat to make it a 3-person inflatable kayak, or attach the Universal QuikRow Kit and transform the 420x kayak into a rowboat that has a swivel seat, a set of oars, and two fishing rod holders.

How fun is that?! The QuikRow Kayak Package is perfect for flatwater, whitewater, fishing, or rowing.

Features:

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Motor Fishing Rig Kayak Package – Model 420XK_PMFR

Sea Eagle 420X Explorer Inflatable Kayak Pro Motor Fishing Rig Package, Model Number 420XK_PMFR.

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer – Pro Motor Fishing Rig Kayak Package (Model Number 420XK_PMFR) is the best fresh and saltwater, inflatable, tandem, fishing kayak package of all time!

Two swivel seats, four fishing rod holders, motor mount, WaterSnake Venom 34 lb thrust electric motor, multi-purpose storage box, and more!

Features:

Related Content: Sea Eagle 350fx Fishing Explorer Inflatable Kayak Review

Certifications

Sea Eagle 420x Explorer inflatable kayaks are certified by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) confirming that the Explorer lineup of kayaks has been manufactured to meet the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) standards for design, construction, and safety.

Sea Eagle Limited Three Year Warranty

Sea Eagle kayaks are covered from bow to stern by a limited 3-year warranty against manufacturing defects.

They can afford to offer an all-inclusive warranty because of their vast experience in designing and selling inflatable boats. They’ve stood behind their products for over 50 years.

As a proven leader in the industry, Sea Eagle generates confidence and peace of mind in those who own their boats.

Risk-Free Trial Offer on Every Sea Eagle

Try a Sea Eagle Risk-Free… for 120 days! Or is it 180 days?

At the time of writing, the Risk-Free Return Policy and the Terms of Sale both mention a 120-day risk-free trial. But I also received an email offering a limited-time “6-Month Risk-Free Trial Offer on every Sea Eagle”.

“If you’re not totally happy with your boat, just return it in good condition for a full refund of your purchase price.”

Sea Eagle Explorer Inflatable Kayak Instructional Video

Here’s a video from Sea Eagle that demonstrates the simplicity of operating Sea Eagle Explorer inflatable kayaks. Inflation, setup, operation, deflation, breaking down, and storing are all covered here…

Necessary Accessories

Personal Flotation Device (PFD): Always carry a United States Coast Guard (USCG) approved PFD and children under 12 should always wear a PFD. PFDs are a boating safety necessity and required by law on government waters.

Dry Bags: The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer lacks watertight storage making dry bags somewhat of a necessity for keeping gear safe and dry.

Conclusion

A Sea Eagle 420x Explorer inflatable kayak loaded down with gear fro camping and fishing.

Wanting a roomy 2-person kayak or a 3-person kayak for your family and friends?

The Sea Eagle 420x Explorer inflatable kayak is the way to go for an all-around inflatable kayak with the greatest versatility. Ocean, whitewater rivers, fishing, bays, lakes, flatwater rivers, and camping… this kayak does it all.

There’s only one limitation to this model. If you’re looking for speed on open water, the Sea Eagle FastTrack is faster. For speed, you’ll want to look at the Sea Eagle 465ft FastTrack inflatable kayak.

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