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The Jackson Kayak Antix, a kayak you might see in videos throw ends, sending boofs, and performing aerial tricks. Well, I use my Antix a bit different. When the Antix first came out, I was in between the weight range for the Medium and Large sizes. I am 6’0’’ and 185 lbs, so I wasn’t sure to do. After talking to some of the other Jackson Team members, I realized that each size would provide a different experience.

Paddling the Large Antix as a Sporty Creekboat

If I went the Medium size, I would be at the top end of the weight range. I would fit snug in the kayak, but it seemed possible. I would likely have no trouble stern squirting. But, it wouldn’t be as effective at river running. The kayak would have a bit more trouble gliding over waves and holes. Most of the folks I talked to of similar body types and weight chose the Medium size.

If I went the Large size, I would be at the low end of the weight range. I would fit loose in the kayak, but that could be handled with outfitting additions. I would have trouble stern squirting. It would be perfect for river running and creeking. The kayak would stay buoyant over waves and holes. I was really interested in having a sporty creekboat in my quiver.

Paddling the Large Antix as a Sporty Creekboat

I chose the Large size Antix. I added some extra hip shims and an extra seat pad to lift my legs toward the thigh braces. I fit comfortably in the kayak and had enough contact with my feet, thighs, hips, butt, and back to control the kayak. Once I took the Large Antix to the river, I never looked back. I started with a few conservative class III rivers like Big Laurel and the Upper Green in North Carolina. It was there I saw it’s potential for play and creeking. I would hop on a surf wave or spin in a 360 hole and have to purposely leave the wave as it would lock on for AMAZING surf sessions. It was so stable and predictable. I could probably take a nap while surfing in it. I attribute this to the planing hull design and those glorious kayak hips behind the cockpit.

Moments after surfing, I was able to launch the Antix off of boofs like Bayless Boof on the Upper Green and Boxcar Falls on the North Fork of the French Broad. It had plenty of speed to launch into the air, and with the short stern it would not get hung up when the flows got a little low. For those who have followed boat design throughout the past decade, there were quite a few creekboats in the past with similar volume to the Large Antix (72 gallons). But I feel confident in saying that few or none of them played as well as the Antix. Rock spins and splats, no problem in the Antix.

Paddling the Large Antix as a Sporty Creekboat

The Large Antix is my go-to kayak. When I’m looking to head to most rivers, I first consider the Antix. It easily fits inside my SUV without putting it onto the roof (i.e. better gas mileage & less effort). I really like loading the Antix into my SUV, as it makes it easier to park at the parking decks at work and I don’t have to worry about it getting stolen. I would caution others to secure their kayak inside the car, as a sudden slam of the brakes will send any kayak flying toward their windshield (a tip I learned from pick-up trucks).

When I moved out to the Pacific Northwest, I knew the Antix would favor well on play runs like the Wenatchee River. The waves on the Wenatchee require a certain amount of hull speed to get onto the way and stay on the wave. The Antix does this with no problem. I am able to stay at Rodeo Hole and Turkey Shoot for as long as I want. I did have some concerns about the Antix’s ability to handle the higher volume runs compared to what I experienced in the Southeast. Again, I didn’t have any issues keeping to bow up over holes, having enough speed to boof, or trouble with large waves. I tested it on the Thompson River in B.C. at flows around 15,000 CFS (see post: and it performed beautifully in the huge waves and whirlpools.

On more technical runs, the Antix also did great. One of my favorite rivers, the Cheoah River in North Carolina, offers a lot of technical moves to challenge the Antix. The Cheoah has sticky holes, boofs that are super fun, and an importance to stay on your line. The Antix again performed beautifully. I was able to punch those sticky holes on the upper section, boof through Bear Creek Falls, and keep the boat on line at the West Prong line. In the PNW, it’s important to paddle the same through Boulder Drop rapid on the Skykomish River. The Antix performed booted well through the picket fence, stayed on line through the tricky currents, and punched plenty of holes in the run-out. I also appreciate that there is plenty of room in the stern for a full pin kit and 4-piece breakdown paddle, as those are essential pieces of gear for me.

In conclusion, the Antix has been my go-to kayak for a few years now. It’s provided me many smiles on the river and I’m certain many more are to come. I look forward to taking it out on more rivers and creeks in the PNW. I hope this blog post helps someone else with their boat purchasing.