The Hobie Fishing Kayak Buyer’s Guide for 2024 is an up-to-date resource with all the latest and greatest from the world’s leading fishing kayak manufacturer. Whether you’re a Hobie kayak owner looking for a new ride or a newcomer to kayak fishing, this guide will have something for you.

HWS assistant manager Andrew and I (James), take an in-depth look at each model in the Hobie lineup looking at the pros, cons, value for money and the types of use each kayak is best suited for, to help you narrow down the decision of which kayak is right for you.

With over 26 years of combined experience selling, using and most importantly fishing from Hobie kayaks, we hope to provide you with an encompassing overview of everything Hobie has to offer prospective fishing kayak buyers.

Pro Angler Series Kayaks

Hobie set out to design the ultimate bells-and-whistles fishing kayak with the Pro Angler (PA) series. The result is an unmatched fishing platform for tournament and inshore recreational anglers that is brimming with market-leading fishing-focused features.  

Highly stable, the Pro Anglers are perfect for standing use thanks to their beamy hull form, yet surprisingly fast and efficient due to the long water line and efficient pedal drives. That beam also ensures you have enough carrying capacity to bring along every bit of kit you could dream of needing and more. These boats are also supremely comfortable thanks to the Pro Angler Armrest Vantage seat (Hobies best & only available on the PAs) making longer fishing sessions a dream.

MY2024 Pro Angler 360 kayaks will receive the updated MD-360-XR drive and drive well. You can read about the specifics in our post here.

The Hobie Pro Angler 14-360 is our choice for tournament anglers and is what you’ll find me in at Hobie fishing events.

HWS managing director James Kilpatrick aboard a Hobie Pro Angler 12-360 fishing kayak

Fishing Features

  • Horizontal rod storage for up to 6 rods on the PA-14 and 4 for PA-12. The only Hobie with this feature.
  • Unmatched storage and carrying capacity with plenty of room for a livewell and PowerPole on the back deck
  • Patented Guardian retractable transducer shield compatible with side scan fishfinders for installation of your fishfinder unit.
  • Long lengths of patented Hobie H-rails and H-track mounts for accessory mounting with built-in tool storage
  • Dual steering controls so you always have a free hand for fishing
  • The only Hobie kayak available with the MirageDrive 360 for the ultimate in maneuverability and control.
  • Unmatched stability for standing
    Quarter view of the Hobie Mirage Pro Angler 14 – 360 Fishing Kayak. Colour: Artic Blue with black accents.

    Pro Angler Models

    $6,390.00$7,290.00 inc GST

    $6,990.00 inc GST

    $5,990.00$7,490.00 inc GST

    $6,990.00 inc GST

    Hobie Pro Anglers are available in two lengths, the Pro Angler 12 and the Pro Angler 14. The 12-foot models pack all the features of the larger 14-foot models into a slightly lighter and shorter platform that makes a noticeable difference when it comes to transporting your kayak. Conversely, the PA 14 will have better speed and carrying capacity thanks to its longer waterline but can start to become difficult to transport depending on your physical ability and your vehicle set-up. 

    Hobie Pro Anglers are also available in two different pedal drive variants; the MirageDrive 180 and the MirageDrive 360. It is important to note that the 360 drive requires a completely different cassette well from the 180 drive. If you’re looking to get into a 360-drive kayak, purchasing a 360-model PA is the only way to do so.

    Which Hobie pedal drive is right for you is entirely job specific. If you spend a lot of time fishing in confined waterways in and around structure, the 360 drive will open up a whole new world of possibilities for how you control your craft and land your fish. If you spend more time in open water, the 180 drive should be your preferred option.

    Buying Advice

    The Pro Angler series kayaks represent Hobie’s premium fishing kayak, featuring a range of angler-focused features that can only be found on these models. Along with this comes a premium price tag that may push the PAs out of your budget range.

    For dedicated tournament and recreational anglers looking for the ultimate fishing kayak that wants for nothing, the Pro Angler represents substantial value for money. However, if you’re not fishing competitively, or you’re looking for an offshore-focused kayak, or you’re conscious of the weight and size of the kayak, your money may be better spent on other models in the Hobie range.

    With the release of the updated XR-360 drive in 2024, there may be some bargains to be caught by savvy buyers on run-out MY2023 Pro Angler 360 kayaks while stocks last.

    Unless you have specific length and weight requirements, we generally advise anyone looking at a Pro Angler series kayak to go for a 14-foot variant. The PA14 provides a lot more kayak for a very modest increase in price and the longer water line will pay dividends in speed and carrying capacity for longer sessions. However, weight, size and transport need serious consideration at this size.

    Outback

    The Outback is Hobie’s most popular fishing kayak and has consistently been our top-selling model for the past 10 years. No other kayak in Hobie’s lineup has had as much refinement and iteration as the Outback since its launch in 2001. With the latest design overhaul in 2019 providing huge improvements to an already legendary platform, the Outback gives the Pro Anglers a real run for their money for the crown of best fishing kayak. 

    Fast, stable and feature-packed, the Outback hits the sweet spot for versatility, providing stalwart performance for inshore and tournament anglers while also making a sturdy choice for offshore sessions. With Hobie’s highly adjustable CTW Vantage seat and excellent carrying capacity, the Hobie Outback is our choice for the best all-rounder fishing kayak.

    The HWS pro team's Russell Babekuhl on board a Hobie Outback fishing kayak

    Fishing Features

    • Patented Guardian retractable transducer shield compatible with side scan fishfinders for installation of your fishfinder unit.
    • Patented Hobie H-rails and H-track mounts for accessory mounting with built-in tool storage and retractable lanyards.
    • Large, livewell-ready rear cargo area with PowerPole mounting inserts. 
    • Dual steering controls so you always have a free hand for fishing.
    • MirageDrive 180 with Turbo Fins as standard.

    Outback Models

    $5,390.00$5,790.00 inc GST

    Buying Advice

    The feature-packed Outback sits at the premium end of Hobie’s kayak lineup with a premium price to match. However, the value for money is significant here, especially when compared to the Pro Angler series. If you’re a keen angler looking for the capability to tackle any waterway and chase any species, from bream to offshore pelagics, the Outback offers serious bang for your buck.

    The weight and size of the Outback will be an important consideration for buyers, particularly those looking to car-top or travel with the kayak regularly. With a hull weight of 38.56 kg, it’s certainly doable with the right vehicle setup, it just takes a bit more effort and a degree of physical fitness to achieve.

    If you like the look of the Outback but the price is a sticking point, check out our value champion, the Hobie Compass below.

    Compass and Compass Duo

    The Compass represents Hobie’s best value for money rotomoulded fishing kayak. Stable, nimble, and lightweight, the Compass is the perfect kayak for anglers looking for maximum value for money in a platform that can be customised to suit their specific needs.

    The 2022 redesign made significant improvements to the seat, meaning there’s now sufficient space under the seat for tackle tray storage without the need for risers.

    Andrew has dubbed the Compass the ultimate in-land fishing kayak after putting his to good use chasing freshwater species like Bass, Cod, Sooty Grunters and Barramundi over 3 weeks in Far North Queensland.

    The Hobie Compass Duo is our pick for the best in-shore tandem fishing kayak. Essentially a stretched-out Compass, the Duo replicates the cockpit so you can fish with a friend or family member. It is important to note that the second pedal drive is a MirageDrive GT only, with only one of the MD-180 MirageDrives supplied as standard.

    HWS assistant manager Andrew Taylor with his Hobie Compass fishing kayak

    Fishing Features

    • Hobie H-track mounts for accessory mounting
    • Fishfinder ready transducer cavity
    • Large, livewell-ready rear cargo area with inserts for a PowerPole mounting bracket 
    • Massively customisable to suit your needs
    • Powered by MirageDrive 180
    • Camo edition comes with Turbo Fins as standard
    Hobie Compass fishing kayak. Colour: Seagrass Green

    Compass Models

    $3,990.00$4,290.00 inc GST

    $5,390.00 inc GST

    Buying Advice

    While the Compass is lighter on standard features than Hobie’s premium Pro Angler and Outback models, it is also substantially more affordable. The Camo edition in particular with Turbo fins as standard, represents some excellent value for money for anyone looking for a mid-range option.

    The great thing about the Compass is you can spec it up to be just as feature packed and capable as the more premium models, and beyond if you wish. This means you add the accessories you want and don’t pay for any you don’t. It also means you aren’t locked into Hobie’s proprietary accessory systems which can save you some serious change when kitting out your new ride.

    The most common upgrade is replacing the round cockpit hatch with a Horizontal rectangle hatch. The round hatch can then be installed in the pre-moulded section in the Compass’ forward cargo area, massively increasing internal storage and improving access. HWS offers free installation of all accessories with any new kayak purchase, so you don’t need to worry about taking a jigsaw to your new kayak.

    Lynx

    Hobie designed the Lynx with a focus on ultra-lightweight and simplicity with a “board-like” hull form that encourages a return to a more minimalist approach to kayak fishing. The results are a seriously fun machine that both myself and Andrew find ourselves using more often than our other technically higher-spec kayaks. 

    The secret to the Lynx’s appeal is the convenience of use. The lightweight Hull (20.41kg) makes transport simple, while the minimalist approach to fishing makes it the perfect companion for an after-work session or to strap on the roof racks for a family getaway.

    Second in stability only to the Pro Anglers, zippy and able to turn on a dime, the Lynx can be an awesome platform for inshore recreational anglers and is particularly popular for sight fishing, chasing bass and bream. 

    In the world of kayak fishing where “more is better”, the Hobie Lynx is a serious breath of fresh air that has quickly earned the admiration of many kayak anglers. The Hobie Lynx is our choice for the best fishing kayak for travelling or for anyone who ascribes to a less is more mentality.  

    HWS managing director James demonstrates just how lightweight the Hobie Lynx fishing kayak is by holding it aloft with one hand

    Fishing Features

    • Fishfinder-ready transducer cavity for no-drill installation
    • Patented Hobie H-track mounts for accessory mounting
    • Large rear cargo area, perfect for a H-Crate or Black-Pack with PowerPole mounting Inserts  
    • Powered by MirageDrive 180
    • Excellent stability for standing
      Hobie Lynx pedal kayak in Ivory Dune

      Lynx Models

      $4,490.00 inc GST

      Buying Advice

      The Lynx has a very different style and approach to fishing from the majority of the kayaks in Hobie’s lineup. First and foremost, ask yourself if this style meshes with your own. If you’re someone who likes options and optimising your kit on the fly, the Lynx might not be the best choice for you. 

      The ACE-TEC construction leaves no internal storage and the design style means you WILL take wash over the bow when encountering any chop or wake. The standard features are also pretty light on, meaning you are more than likely going to need to spend a few extra bucks to accessorise, in order to maximise its potential as a fishing kayak.

      Despite this, the Lynx offers excellent value for money for one reason; you will use it more often. If you’re a keen fisho with hopes to spend more time on the water, the Lynx is your key to happiness. From my own personal experience, I can tell you I’m on the water significantly more often since I got myself a Lynx. I’m relishing the simplicity of the experience while still landing plenty of catch.

      If you like the look of the Lynx but the price is a sticking point, check out the Hobie Passport 12 below.

      Passport

      The Hobie Passport 12 is a hidden gem for inshore kayak anglers. Lightweight, stable and highly maneuverable, the Passport is much more capable than it gets credit for. Representing unbeatable value for money, the Hobie Passport 12 is our choice for the best-value Hobie fishing kayak.

      The Passport series are thermo-moulded which significantly decreases the purchase price compared with their rotomoulded siblings. Despite its entry-level price point, the Passport 12 comes with some nice fishing-focused features as standard, which make it a basic yet capable performer right out of the box.

      It’s the upgradability where the Passport really shines. Hobie has designed the Passport 12 to integrate with a huge range of fishing-focused accessories. This not only allows you to customise the kayak to suit your needs, but also enables the Passport to compete with any kayak on the water for fishing versatility. 

      HWS assistant manager Andrew fishing from a Hobie Passport 10.5 fishing kayak

      Fishing Features

      • Patented Hobie H-track mounts for accessory mounting
      • Fishfinder-ready transducer cavity for no-drill installation (Passport 12 only*)
      • PowerPole mounting Inserts (Passport 12 only*
      • Livewell-ready rear cargo area 
      • Powered by MirageDrive GT or upgraded to MirageDrive 180
      • Highly adaptable fishing platform with upgrades and accessories
        Hobie Passport 12 fishing kayak quater view

        Passport Models

        $1,990.00 inc GST

        $2,490.00 inc GST

        The Hobie Passport is available in two lengths; the 10.5-foot variant and the 12-foot variant. Despite both carrying the Passport name, these two kayaks offer distinctly different platforms for anglers.

        The 10.5 will fulfil the role of a basic fishing kayak with absolute ease. Its size and weight make it a perfect choice for travelling and its stackability and price means having one each for you and your partner is a much more realistic proposition. However, the size makes it more suitable for smaller users and the weight-carrying capacity and speed will suffer in comparison to the larger model.

        The Passport 12.0 is our recommendation for anyone with fishing as a primary use case. The upgradability we highlighted above is most apparent in this model and it is really only the 12 that deserves any comparison with the rotomoulded kayaks above when it comes to fishing prowess.

        Buying Advice

        The Passport 12 is severely underrated by kayak anglers looking for a fishing kayak on a mid-range budget. You can purchase and completely fit out a Passport 12 into a very capable fishing platform within the budget of even the most value-orientated Hobie rotomoulded kayak, the Compass.

        Much like the Lynx, the Passport is excellent for convenience of use thanks to its light weight (33.11 kg for the 12). So not only is it cheaper to start with, but you’re more likely to use it more often, making its value-for-money proposition even stronger.

        You might expect the cheaper thermo-moulded kayaks to be less durable. We thought the same when Hobie first announced the Passport in 2019. Yet, here we are in 2024 and we have not had a single Passport returned under warranty for hull joint or hull integrity issues. While over the long-term I’m positive the rotomoulded kayaks will win the longevity race, I wouldn’t be surprised to get 10 plus solid years out of a Passport for a significantly lower investment. 

        Revolution

        The Hobie Revolution 13 is a proven offshore performer and the platform of choice for kayak anglers looking to target open waters. Fast and sleek, the Revolution handles chop and swell like no other, while its light weight and waterline length makes it perfect for covering long distances.

        The Revolution design is more narrow than the other in-shore-focused kayaks in Hobie’s lineup. The hull form maximises secondary stability, allowing the boat to move with the swell which is preferred for rougher waters. This design also decreases wetted surface area to maximise pedal efficiency when trolling, ensuring you have enough stamina to get out there and back again.

        A purpose-designed and job-specific kayak, the Revolution won’t be for everyone. However, if the allure of big fish and open waters is calling you, you won’t find a better platform than the Revo. The Hobie Revolution 13 is our choice for the best ocean fishing kayak.

        HWS customer Grant lands a sail fish aboard his Hobie Revolution 13 fishing kayak

        Fishing Features

        • Fishfinder-ready transducer cavity for no-drill installation (Revolution 13 only *)
        • Large, livewell-ready rear cargo area
        • Excellent internal storage capacity, perfect for offshore use
        • Powered by MirageDrive 180
        • Paddles well for propulsion redundancy or an upper-body workout.
          Hobie Revolution 13 3/4 view. Colour: Slate Blue

          Revolution Models

          $4,090.00 inc GST

          $4,311.00 inc GST

          The Hobie Revolution is available in two lengths; the 11-foot variant and the 13-foot variant. Apart from the difference in physical size, the features and fit-out are almost identical between the two with only a small difference in price

          Given the Revolution’s MO of offshore kayak fishing, the 13 is the only real choice for this purpose. The shorter waterline length of the 11 will significantly reduce the sought-after ocean-going characteristics of speed and swell handling ability as well as carrying capacity. Let’s face it, when going offshore, bigger is certainly better.

          Buying Advice

          The Revolution excels in offshore angling work. If open water is where you will do the majority of your fishing then this is unequivocally the kayak for you. Its ability to check off the miles with unmatched efficiency makes it a great choice if you often find yourself exploring new fishing grounds, needing to cover distance to get to your favourite spots, or if you like to do a bit of touring. For everyone else, there are better options. 

          Like the Compass, the Revolution is a relatively bare-bones kayak as standard, allowing you to fit it out exactly as you need it. While this means you aren’t paying for anything you don’t need, you will need to set aside some budget for upgrades to unlock this kayak’s full fishing potential.

          For a two-person tandem version of the revolution, check out the Oasis Tandem below.

          Oasis Tandem

          The Hobie Oasis is a premium two-person tandem pedal kayak, designed to provide spacious comfort for two adults in a high-performance hull. With a design based on the ocean-going Revolution, the Oasis is the tandem of choice for those wanting to target offshore fishing grounds with a friend or family member.

          With its long 14’6” (4.42 m) length, sleek hull form and dual MirageDrive 180s, the Oasis is unmatched in its ability to cover ground with speed and efficiency. This hull form also ensures excellent swell handling capabilities that prioritise secondary stability (preferred for offshore use).

          The Hobie Oasis is our pick for the best off-shore tandem fishing kayak.

          Fishing Features

          • Huge internal storage capacity
          • Large, livewell-ready rear cargo area
          • Replicated cockpits so both users can steer the kayak, great for when one person has a fish on
          • Powered by dual MirageDrive 180s
          • Paddles exceptionally well for propulsion redundancy or an upper body workout.
            A couple and their dog land a fish aboard a Hobie Oasis fishing kayak
            Hobie Oasis tandem fishing kayak. Colour; Papaya Orange

            Oasis Models

            $6,111.00 inc GST

            Buying Advice

            Much like the Revolution the Oasis is based on, this kayak is highly job specific. If you’re looking for an offshore capable tandem kayak then the Hobie Oasis is an excellent choice. However, if you’re fishing is more lake and rivers focused, then we would recommend the Compass Duo for its price, improved stability and features.

            The Oasis is a premium kayak with quality-of-life features that the Compass Duo can’t match. Dual MD-180s and replicated steering controls are certainly nice to have and make the front seat a much more enjoyable and engaging experience. But these premium inclusions come with a premium price tag. When it comes to fishing-focused features the Oasis is severely lacking, meaning you will need to include room in your budget for accessories to turn the Oasis into an open-water fishing machine.

            The weight and size of the Oasis will also need to be considered for transport and storage at home. Weighing in at 42kg it’s certainly possible to car-top, especially with two people loading. However, the right vehicle setup and some physical ability will be necessary.

            iTrek Inflatable Kayaks

            Hobie continues to be a leader in the innovation of the sport of kayak fishing with the introduction of the iTrek inflatable kayak range. These high-quality, pedal-driven inflatables open up the possibility of kayak fishing to a huge range of people living in apartments, on the road in a caravan or RV or anyone with limited storage where a standard hard shell kayak just isn’t feasible. 

            True to form, Hobie’s inflatable kayaks are fast, stable and highly maneuverable. Built tough with multiple high-pressure chambers and 550 denier PVC hulls with drop stitch construction, the iTrek series have proven themselves as a seriously capable fishing platform.

            Much like the Lynx, an iTrek will dictate a more minimalist approach to kayak fishing. While lacking some of the convenience factor of a hard shell, an iTreks ability to pack down into its dedicated bag to be tossed in the boot of the car and stored under the bed at home make it hard to beat.

            Steve Fields landing a fish aboard his Hobie iTrek 9 Ultralight inflatable fishing kayak. Image credit Florida Sportsman

            Fishing Features

            • Large rear cargo area that’s perfect for a H-Crate or Black Pack to house rod holders and store gear and tackle.
            • Comfortable raised seating position
            • Powered by MirageDrive GT and upgradable to MirageDrive 180
            • Excellent stability for standing
              Hobie iTrek 11 inflatable kayak quarter view

              iTrek Models

              $3,590.00 inc GST

              $3,990.00 inc GST

              $4,990.00 inc GST

              The Hobie iTrek inflatable kayak is available in four lengths; the 9-foot ultralight variant, the 11-foot variant, the 14-foot tandem variant, and the 15-foot four-person variant.

              For those looking for the ultimate in small storage and transport footprint, the iTrek 9 Ultralight is the number one choice. Packing down into a storage bag small enough that you can really take it anywhere, including checked baggage on a plane or packing it into remote locations. 

              The iTrek 11 is essentially an inflatable Lynx that’s even lighter and easier to store and transport. The larger iTrek 14 makes it possible to share your kayak fishing experience with a friend or family member. Or, remove the front seat and make use of a huge standing and casting platform for unrivalled sight fishing.

              Buying Advice

              The disadvantages of an inflatable compared to a hard shell are obvious.

              A) you need to inflate and deflate the kayak every time you use it.
              B) No matter how well you maintain it, the kayak will have a lifespan that will be shorter than its hard shell counterparts.
              C) You’re more limited in mounting fishing accessories.

              Despite all this, an iTrek is still an excellent choice for a fishing kayak for the right buyer.

              It all comes down to meeting your specific needs. If you’re limited on space for storing a kayak or you have a small vehicle with no capability to transport a hard shell, even if you have no vehicle at all, an iTrek in its wheeled bag will get you out on the water and amongst the fish.

              If you intend to fish inland waters where maneuverability is key to getting amongst the structure and landing a fish, these kayaks will do everything you ask of them and more. A few simple accessories are all that’s needed to make these versatile inflatable kayaks into a platform that will provide years of sturdy performance.

              Summary

              There are many things to consider when choosing the right Hobie fishing kayak for your needs. The type of waterways you frequent, the type of fish you target, what accessories and features you might need and how you will transport and store the kayak are all important factors. Budget will undoubtedly also be a deciding factor for where you land in the Hobie range.

              Our analysis of each of the Hobie fishing kayaks is based on our 26 years of combined experience selling, using and fishing from Hobie kayaks. We found that;

              • The Hobie Pro Angler 14 -360 is the best fishing kayak for tournaments
              • The Hobie Outback is the most versatile fishing kayak
              • The Hobie Compass is the best value rotomoulded fishing kayak
              • The Hobie Lynx is the best fishing kayak for travel
              • The Hobie Passport 12 is the best value-for-money fishing kayak
              • The Hobie iTrek 11 inflatable is the best fishing kayak for people living in apartments

              Of course, the best way to choose which kayak is right for you is to come for a no-obligation test drive on beautiful Lake Macquarie with HWS. We love getting out on the water for test drives.

              With free installation of all accessories on new kayak purchases, free kayak delivery to greater Sydney, the Central Coast, Hunter and Port Stephens and unmatched after-sales service, HWS is Australia’s premiere authorised Hobie kayak dealer.

              About the Author

              HWS Managing Director James Kilpatrick

              James Kilpatrick founded Hunter Water Sports (HWS) in 2012 and has been its managing director ever since. With over 18 years in the marine and fishing industry and a passion for kayak fishing both recreational and competitive, James is an expert in all things Hobie kayaks.