AIRE Lynx 2 Inflatable Kayak Review

The AIRE Lynx 2 Tandem Inflatable Kayak is one of the most expensive inflatable tandems out there, and yet experts and amateurs alike agree that it’s worth every penny. It is rugged and maneuverable enough to handle Class III and IV rapids, stable enough for beginners, and durable and repairable enough to last for decades. 

The industry-leading warranty provides 10 years of protection for tubes, fabric, D-rings, AIREcells, valves, and zippers, ensuring that this kayak will stand up for years of use, providing much more than the few seasons one expects from other inflatables. The Lynx II is definitely a contender for the best 2 person inflatable kayak and we’ll take a look at why in this post.

Overview of the AIRE Lynx

Specs

  • Type: 2-person inflatable kayak
  • Size: Inflated size: 12’6” x 39”
  • Weight: 43 pounds
  • Tube diameter: 11.5 inches
  • Bow rise: 16 inches
  • Stern rise: 13.5 inches
  • 2” waterline: 91 inches
  • Weight capacity: 475 pounds
  • Materials: 1100 denier PVC
  • Material weight per square yard: 24/27 ounces
  • AIREcell material: 14mm urethane
  • Valves: Leafield
  • Number of air chambers: 3
  • Warranty: 10-year no fault warranty
  • Available colors: red, yellow, blue, green, or orange

Construction and build

The AIRE Lynx II Tandem has AIRE’s unique AIREcell construction. AIREcell bladders are made from 14 mm urethane, which is incredibly flexible and resilient, and then protected by the 1100 denier PVC construction of the boat. The continuous curve hull design provides fast speed and improved responsiveness. 

Leafield valves are made of rugged acetal plastic and have a seal that is designed to clean the surface as it operates, reducing the amount of dirt and debris in the valve that can cause leakage. 

AIRE D-rings are welded to an oversize PVC base inside the boat, with two pieces of webbing. The ring is then punched through two precision slots in the hull, so they are structurally integrated into the boat, rather than simply attached to the outside. These D-rings provide incredible durability and reliability, for years of worry-free tying, towing, and attachments. 

The Lynx II has self-bailing double mesh drain holes that keep debris out of the floor pocket, and two low profile grab handles that make it easy to flip the kayak upright if it capsizes. 

The AIRE Lynx II Tandem Inflatable Kayak comes with two Cheetah chairs, with a stiff backrest, large storage pockets, and a bottle holder. The seats easily clip into the 17 cargo loops lining the floor of the kayak and can also be used independently as a camp chair. 

About the brand: AIRE

AIRE stands for Argonaut Inflatable Research and Engineering. In 1989, the company was formed with the goal of making inflatable whitewater kayaks that didn’t require glue to hold them together, and could therefore be more durable, safer, and easier to repair. 

Thermally welded seams use heat and pressure to create a permanent physical bond that is much more durable than glue, and eliminating glue also protects employees and the environment from harmful VOCs and solvents. 

As a result of this mission, AIRE invented the AIREcell system, an internal bladder made from 10-12mil urethane film. Urethane is stretchy and flexible, with great puncture-resistance. The AIREcells are oversized and thermally welded to prevent pressure on the seams. 

AIREcells are connected together with a stretchy Lycra bulkhead, and AIREcell floors have urethane coated nylon with welded I-beams for rigidity. Full-length zippers can be used to easily access and repair the AIREcells, and every part of an AIRE inflatable kayak can be repaired or replaced, making them a great investment. 

Pros

  • AIREcell system and 1100 denier PVC make an incredibly rugged, safe, abrasion-resistant inflatable
  • Stable and maneuverable
  • High weight capacity
  • Cheetah seats have built-in storage and double as a camp chair
  • Leafield valves are durable and self-cleaning
  • Dual mesh drainage for self-bailing that reduces debris
  • D-rings integrated into the hull structure
  • Bow and stern carry handles
  • 17 cargo attachment points for versatile storage
  • Highly repairable kayak, inside and out, and comes with a repair kit
  • 10-year no-fault warranty
  • Comes in five vivid, appealing colors

Cons

  • Relatively expensive

Conclusion

The AIRE Lynx II Tandem Inflatable Kayak is a great all-around river runner, with great control and maneuverability, even in rough water. It can manage waves, rapids, and eddies, with excellent safety and durability. 

The rugged design and high weight rating make it a great choice for overnight adventures, where it can hold all your gear, and the seats can be used in camp as well as on the water. Suitable for solo or tandem kayaking, full of great features, and backed by a fantastic warranty, the AIRE Lynx II is a favorite inflatable for beginners and experts alike.