Wavesport 2009 Diesel Whitewater Kayak Review

2009 WaveSport Diesel 70

The original Diesel 65 and 75 defined the term 'river runner' when they were released back in 2005. The designs were so solid that Team Wave Sport and countless others used the Diesels as their go-to big water AND creekers for years. Their combination of forgiveness, maneuverability, and bomber outfitting made choosing the Diesel a no-brainer, no matter what river you were putting on. For the '09 season the design team at Wave Sport decided it was time for an evolution of the 'SUV' of kayaks. We went out to improve every single aspect of the Diesel, and even added a size to the series.

2009 Wave Sport Diesel from Kelsey Thompson on Vimeo.

The Specs:

There are 3 versions of the Diesel for 2009. The 60, 70 and 80(gallons). The 70 (most popular size) is the first version to be released, and is available now! The 60 will be for sale by mid-December, and the 80 in late December. Here's what we know so far....

  • Diesel 60-7’4” long/24.50” wide-Paddler weight range: 60-130
  • Diesel 70-8’ 0' long/25” 0' wide-Paddler weight range: 123-190
  • Diesel 80-8’6” long/25.75” wide-Paddler weight range: 170-260


  • The 2009 Diesel is faster this year. How did WaveSport make it faster? With a new rocker profile and increased flared sidewalls in the bow and stern.
  • How did they make it more maneuverable? By eliminating the section of the rocker break that hindered quick turning. This also gave us the only loose river runner on a green wave!
  • How did Robert Peerson and the Team make it stay on the surface in huge rapids? We peaked the deck in the bow and stern just enough to resurface predictably and smoothly.
  • The Diesel now has 3 sizes to choose from in 60, 70, & 80 gallon versions.
  • The new aluminum-base thigh hooks are more adjustable and will allow the even the tallest of boaters to have a perfect fit with a higher knee area.

"It proved to me that all of our prototyping and testing really paid off. It was as if you took all of the attributes of the old Diesel and put them on steroids. The first thing I did was to lean the boat over with my hips to test its stability. The 70 felt more stable than my old 75 gallon version, and at least as stable as my creekboat, the Habitat 80! I felt like a faster, more controlled paddler in the 70. It carved into micro eddies effortlessly. I resurfaced the 23-foot Spout waterfall in control and moving away from the drop with speed. The deck now sheds water amazingly well in big wave trains thanks to the new peaked shape. The Horseshoe Wave at the base of the falls was almost totally washed out and didn't even look surfable, but I stuck a 180 then backsurfed it with no foam pile at all.

The redesigned Diesel paddles better in every aspect than the original. It's going to be my new go-anywhere, do-anything boat this winter in West Virginia. I can't wait to take it on a Lower Meadow into 15,000 cfs" Upper Gauley run. I'd feel 100% confident in the Diesel 70 on a big mission like that.


The Diesel is a planing hull boat with some edges. If you are used to rounded hull creek boats like the Jefe, it may take a little while to get dialed in.

The Verdict:

The Diesel's an SUV, 4x4 kayak that has the best features from the older series (Diesel) and then some additional modifications to make it even faster(Bryan Kirk won the Gore Race in it), more stable and looser. It has great outfitting too. I remember the first time that I sat in a Big EZ.....I was sold on the WS outfitting. If you're looking for a do-it-all boat that is a blast to paddle and will add some confidence to your game, this is it! CLICK HERE TO ORDER ONE NOW!

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