Intex Explorer K2 Kayak Review

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There are two things that are required for an exciting hobby. You need to have time to indulge in the hobby and you need money to keep the hobby going. Not everyone wants to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on a simple hobby and many hobbies don’t require it. Kayaking doesn’t require a huge amount of money to get started with if you choose the right kayak to take out on the water.

Whether you’re an adult or a child, a beginner or an expert, a budgeter or a buyer, kayaking can work for all of these situations. However, those who want an inflatable kayak that is both inexpensive and quality would do well to look toward the Intex Explorer K2 Kayak.

The Intex Explorer K2 kayak is a two-person, budget-friendly, inflatable touring K2 kayak. A top feature of this inflatable kayak is that it comes with all the accessories you need to get out on the water. It’s made of a puncture-resistant, high-quality vinyl construction which allows it to handle bumping up against rocks or other items in the water. It also comes with dual air chambers, so if one chamber does become punctured, you can get out of the water safely.

The Explorer K2 comes with a removable skeg, which makes its tracking exceptional in choppy water. Its aluminum oars are capable of doing the job but may not be the best on the market today. The Intex Explorer K2 Kayak comes in a gray and yellow design that offers excellent visibility and ensures your safety in the water.

This Intex Explorer K2 kayak review is going to look a bit more in-depth at the inflatable kayak. Those who want the short version should be aware that the Explorer K2 is an inexpensive kayak option that works well for enthusiasts who are on a budget but want to stay close to the water.

Table of Contents

Pros and Cons of the Explorer K2


  • Budget friendly
  • Easy portability through bow and stern handles
  • Offers quick deflation and inflation
  • Removable skeg improves tracking
  • Design makes kayak easy to store
  • Offers stability and rigidity through I-beam floor
  • Great visibility through bright color
  • Simple and easy to transport and carry
  • Comes equipped with aluminum oars and other accessories
  • Beginner friendly inflatable kayak
  • Provides a high weight capacity of 400 pounds


  • Aluminum oars are not the highest quality
  • Comes only with repair patches so glue needs to be purchased separately
  • Person in back of inflatable kayak may have cramped leg space
  • Carrying bag is not very high quality

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak

There is one thing that the manufacturer is known for and that is their exceptional selection of inflatables. They make many inflatable kayaks, as well as above-ground pools, and airbeds. This manufacturer has a variety of top inflatables, including the Intex Challenger K1 Kayak and the Intex Challenger K2 Kayak.

As far as this inflatable goes, it is known as a best-selling two-person inflatable kayaks available. Our Intex Explorer K2 Kayak review will look at the construction, performance, and user-friendliness with this inflatable kayak compared to others.

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Construction of the Explorer

When you choose the Explorer K2, you can expect a puncture-resistant vinyl construction which is made up of air chambers. There are two different air chambers to prevent the entire boat from sinking if a single area gets a puncture. The vinyl used for this kayak is strong, durable, and capable of withstanding corrosion and rust. It’s also resistant to moisture and abrasion.

The Explorer K2 doesn’t have the strongest vinyl available but it’s more than enough to do the job. You can take it out in lakes and streams with trees and bushes and expect it to do well. However, over time, it’s going to be more likely for one of the separate air chambers to get a hole or puncture. Thankfully, the kayak does come with repair patches so you can fix up holes when needed.

Regardless of how strong the kayak is, a puncture can sometimes happen. This is why it comes with separate air chambers in case of an accident.

Basically, if an air chamber is punctured, the Explorer is not going to sink. With separate air chambers, you can still leave the water and reach the shore easily.

Intex Explorer K2 Stability

For a kayak that comes at such an inexpensive price, you might expect us to note that it’s not very stable. That isn’t the case with the Intex Explorer K2 Kayak. The kayak is stable in calm water based largely on how wide it is. Since the Intex Explorer is wider than the typical kayak, that means it contacts the water over a larger area. This makes the kayak stable and will prevent flipping and wobbling.

The Intex Explorer K2 may not perform quite as well in choppy waves. This is because the kayak is quite light, and a small tide can push the Intex Explorer off-course. This shouldn’t be too surprising since you can only expect so many features with the inexpensive price of the Explorer K2 Kayak.

As far as maneuvering goes, the light weight of the kayak makes it easy to handle. A strong stroke or two with the paddles can change direction of the kayak in seconds. All in all, the Explorer K2 has reasonable maneuverability and stability. If you have a low budget but want to get out on the lake, it makes a good option.

Intex Explorer K2 Level of Speed

As far as speed goes, the light weight of the Intex Explorer offers enough speed for a simple recreational trip. It also should work out just fine in a casual competition assuming you use your paddles in an efficient way. However, the Intex Explorer is not going to compete at a high level against expensive kayaks when it comes to speed.

Exceptional Tracking with the Explorer K2

Most of the time, a kayak with a light weight isn’t going to have great tracking. However, the Explorer K2 Kayak is the exception to the rule since it stays on the path you want and will not drift off in another direction. This is based on the removable skeg, which you can install into the base of the kayak. This skeg keeps the kayak going in the right direction and provides efficient tracking.

If you are using the kayak in shallow waters, there is no need to use the skeg since tracking is great without it. You can take off the removable skeg in shallow waters and then reinstall it when you plan to go a bit deeper.

The port found in the base of the kayak holds onto the skeg firmly. It is very unlikely that it will become dislodged while using the Intex Explorer.

Comfortable Inflatable Seats with the Intex Explorer K2

There are two inflatable seats with the Explorer, each of which is comfortable enough for two or three hours of kayaking. Our review shows that when using both of the inflatable seats, the back seat may have limited leg space. This makes it ideal for the taller person to sit in the front rather than the back for the better level of space.

Weight Capacity of the Intex Explorer

While the price of this kayak may be one of its best selling points, another is that it has a massive weight capacity. The Explorer K2 has a capacity beyond many expensive kayaks, not to mention the lower-priced boats that are its competitors.

With the ability to carry 400 pounds, it can carry two adults and a dog without a problem. However, you should know there are no special storage compartments for things like paddles, so you’ll need to keep most of your gear in the cockpit.

The kayak is capable of holding all your camping gear, but you are going to need to have dry bags to hold your wallet, electronics, and other items.

Intex Explorer Offers Ease of Use for Beginners

If you are just getting started with the hobby, the K2 is a great option for you. It’s easy to assemble, has smooth tracking, is simple to use, and offers great maneuverability which makes it ideal for a beginner. It also comes with an air pump to easily inflate the boat.

The air pump has to be used in several different areas to inflate the boat. Each of these points on the kayak is marked with a number from one to five. With the air pump, the Intex Explorer can be fully inflated and assembled in about 10 to 15 minutes. You’ll need to operate the pump manually which does take a bit of effort. This is a good warmup to getting out on the lake.

You’ll find that deflating is just as easy as all you need to do is remove the air plugs. You’ll also need to remove items like seats and paddles before storing the boat somewhere safe. It does not have a rudder system which is a good thing for those who find it difficult to operate. Paddling is how tracking is handled.

Simple to Transport Kayak

Due to the compact size of the boat, transporting it is simple. After it has been deflated, it’s compact enough to fit inside of a shoulder bag. The bag can be carried anywhere, even places where a hard-shell kayak could not be moved.

When traveling to a new city, you can bring it with you, so you don’t have to rent a different inflatable. You can also store it in the back seat or the trunk of a car. The boat can also be carried onto a plane without any problems. It doesn’t take up a lot of extra space and can be stored in pretty much any closet.

An additional perk to the portability of the boat is that it offers handles on each side. This makes it simple to move the kayak from the car to the lake or stream. The only real negative is that the included carrying bag is not the best quality.

Wrapping Up

If you want to enjoy some time on the lakes or streams near you, the Intex Explorer K2 is a great option to provide that. The Explorer kayak comes at a reasonable price and it will handle whatever you throw at it.

This boat is stable on placid waters and can track well using the removable skeg that comes with it. It’s also a great option due to the 400 pound capacity that can fit two people easily. It comes with accessories to help you get around without spending any extra cash.

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