The Best Watercraft of 2017 Tested by our Editors for Alaskan Hunters

Pristine Ventures KorkPristineVentures-Kork.jpg
Scott Nicholson of North Pole, AK, purchased a Kork and used it on a remote 8-day float hunt for moose in interior Alaska and here’s what he had to say: “I liked the performance of the Kork; it is light, maneuverable and tough. On a father-and-son float trip in 2016 my two sons and I took a 55 ½-inch moose. We used two Legend rafts and one Kork. At first we split the moose up among the three boats. I wanted to see how the Kork would handle a heavy load, so we put all the moose, including the rack, and a 200-pound hunter and all his gear in the boat. It handled great!” Scott went on to say that he also used the Kork as a dinghy to go ashore from his saltwater boat in Valdez when spring bowhunting for black bear and it performed admirably. If money were no object, Scott says he’d get two more Korks and have a fleet of three, because they weigh only 42 pounds, are easy to carry and to transport on a plane. We see this as an excellent solution for the hunter who wants to float remote rivers.

Onyx M-16 Belt Pack Manual Inflatable Life JacketOnyx-M16.jpg
This belt pack is a useful tool for hunters, as it provides protection from drowning while remaining low-profile and easy-to-wear and it doesn’t get in the way of shooting your firearm or wearing a pack. Upon entering the water this Type V PFD will auto-inflateto 17-pounds of buoyancy and can be manually inflated to 26.5 pounds.

Mustang Survival Lil’ Legends 70 Youth VestMustang-Survival-Lil’-Legends-70-Youth-Vest.jpg
Our 6-year-old tester reports that the PFD is comfortable to wear and that he thinks the camo pattern is cool. We’ve noticed that when we outfit our kids in similar products as ourselves they then feel more like they are part of the team and want to fish and hunt even more. And that’s good for all of us. Mustang improved on this proven design by making it easier for kids to move while wearing it and by helping them cool off quicker with the addition of a cooling-channeled rear panel. Three sizes are available to accommodate kids to 90 pounds.