Every year there seems to be one new boat that draws excitement from paddlers and retailers alike, and creates a noteworthy buzz. This year, just before Outdoor Retailer, we got word that the Pyranha Burn was going to be redesigned.
We got to see a prototype at OR, and really liked what Pyranha had done to it. We think that the 2014 Burn, or the Burn III is going to be very popular this spring.
After checking out the display boat at the tradeshow, we wanted to know more in depth info, so we reached out to Team Pyranha spiritual movitavor, Dave Fusilli. He gave us the straight dope on this big water, river running / creeking hard charger. Here is the info that you’ll need to help decide if this is the right boat for you:
1.)What’s the main difference between the current model Pyranha Burn (II) and the new 2014 Burn (III):
The new Burn is a bit longer and faster, has a little more volume (maybe 2 gallons or so), has a narrower knee area (similar to Shiva) and wider seating pad, is LIGHTER, and also has some modifications to the edges (particularly near the stern)…more on all of this below.
2.) How does the 2014 Burn (3.0) compare to the Shiva?
The Shiva is more of a straight up creeker, and the 2014 Pyranha Burn is a river running, big water slayer. The Shiva has less edge, a rounder hull, more rocker, and is available with more volume (up to 93 gallons). If you’re looking to paddle lower volume creeks with shallow features, very steep drops, and class V in general, you may like the Shiva better.
The Burn has has more of a precise feel than the Shiva has due to the planning hull and edge. Either way, whether you’re a steep creeker or a big water paddler / river runner, Pyranha’s got you covered. One thing to note, is that this years Pyranha Burn has the cockpit combing that the Shiva uses – the 2 boats have that in common.
3.) What is the edge like on the new 2014 Burn?
The Burn still has a planning hull. It’s got an edge on that runs from bow to stern. A portion of the edge behind the seat has been smoothed out a little bit. This has been a pretty common thing to do on high performance river runners because it offers the best of both worlds; a paddler can edge the boat anytime, yet not have to worry about getting smacked over when the edge grabs the water unintentionally.
The focus of this boat is the same as found in Burn’s of generations past; precision handling. The awesome thing about a Burn, is that you can literally look at where you want to go, and the boat will carve it’s way to your target. Kayaks turn from the stern, and by smoothing out the hull “you’ll have more edge where you need it, and less edge where you don’t “ says Dave.
4.) How does the overall boat design compare to the 2010 Burn (II)?
The new Burn has a longer water line, which makes it faster. It also has a few more gallons. This will give it better handling in big water features. It’s only a couple of gallons bigger, so it will still have a sleek high performance feel.
On that note, the knee area of the boat has been modified, because Pyranha is using the cockpit combing from the Shiva. They are closer together (for more control) – similar to how a paddler would feel in the Shiva. One of the few complaints that paddlers about the Burn II, was that it had a wide knee position – problem solved! There is also a little bit more rocker up front, which can only do good things when boofing and trying to make moves quickly.
Adding rocker to the bow profile, and a peaked deck also make the boat look cool, and let’s not kid around, all Pyranha’s look badass. Robert Peerson (Pyranha’s boat design master) is the man!!
5.) What is the outfitting like in the 2014 Pyranha Burn? Anything new and exciting?
Yes! Pyranha still uses the same high performance Connect 30 outfitting, which can be likened to the feel of sitting inside of a sports car. It’s somewhat minimalist (compared to the new Dagger / Wave Sport outfitting), comfortable, and keeps you snug. The Burn still has a roto-mold center wall, which stiffens up the boat. As previously mentioned, the thighs have a tighter feel. Another change that Pyranha made (for the better) was reworking the front bulkhead. It is now angled a little more forward, which is more of a natural and high performance feel. The bulkhead is also a bit lighter. It seems that creek boats have gotten noticeably heavier recently, so nice job on that Pyranha!
6.) Is the Pyranha Burn too edgy for me?
The new 2014 Burn still have a heavy emphasis on performance / precision paddling. You can carve turns in this boat. Unlike other river runners, that have dulled down edges, the Pyranha kept the Burn’s crisp.
BUT – Pyranha did work on the volume segment right behind the seat, as well as the edge. By raising the hump behind the seat, the boat will keep water from piling up on it, which it turn will make it less grabby. Also, as we have already mentioned, the stern behind the seat is subdued, which will cause it to be a smoother and more predictable.
The Pyranha Burn is a high performance river runner. If you have never paddled a kayak before, and want to learn in this boat – it may take some getting used to. In fact, you may even become a better paddler (quicker) because of it.
It seems that the sweet spot for the Burn is class III/ IV and V river running, with some creeking mixed in for fun. Gore Canyon, Bailey, Pine Creek and The Number on The Arkansas and runs of that nature were practically built for this boat.
Ultimately, the only way to know if the Burn is right for you, is by hopping in one and boofing everything in site. Try one for yourself!