The Bote Lono Aero Is the Ultimate Inflatable Kayak

May 2, 2022


If you’re a fishing enthusiast, then you know how awesome it is to be out on the water in your own vessel: You can have multiple poles within arm’s reach, all your gear conveniently stashed, and be in prime position to land the catch of your life. But for most people, that dream fishing setup is a tall order. You’ll need a fishing boat, for starters, along with a truck or large SUV to tow it around or a dock to tie up to. It requires some serious logistics—unless you’re fishing from the new Bote Lono Aero inflatable kayak.

The Aero is the perfect solution for those of us that don’t have access to a dedicated fishing boat. After a long weekend spent on the water with it in the Back Bay in Newport Beach, CA, we can say that this is hands-down one of the finest inflatable watercraft we’ve tried.

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First, this boat is so damn simple to get dialed for your day. The included pump makes inflation a breeze (you can fill it up in 10 minutes or less), and all the included bells and whistles—like front and rear cargo straps and stash pouches—make it easy to organize all your gear. It features a comfortable sit-on-top design, and even if you’re out with multiple rods and a day’s worth of provisions, this kayak can handle it. It boasts four rod holders in its superb Rocket Rack—suitable for both conventional and fly rods—and is designed to troll two rods at a time. No matter what kind of fish you’re after, this kayak will help you catch them.

The Aero is designed for maximum versatility. It has a removable seat, eight grab handles for easy transport, Velcro straps for securing a paddle, rudder steering attachment points just to the left and right of the seat, a convenient magnetic Magnepod port for Bote drinkware (no spilled drinks in this boat), and it even boasts an accessory mounting point at the bow to capture your favorite moments with your preferred camera.

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On the water, this kayak is as rigid and sturdy as any inflatable we’ve ever paddled. It’s stable, it’s solid, and it’ll keep you on-course no matter what water conditions you need to navigate. You can even use it three different ways: Strip it down to a standup paddleboard (simply by removing the seat), paddle it like a kayak, or use the pedal drive (more on that below).

Don’t need to catch fish? It’s great for casual exploring and exercise, too. During our testing, the Lono Aero was a pleasure to paddle across the water.

On our tester, we opted for the optional Apex Pedal Drive system (an $899 add-on) from Bote. It was a smart choice, and it turned the kayak into the ultimate rig in terms of versatility and convenience. Matched with this surprisingly smooth, powerful, and easy-to-install pedal drive, we found the Lono Aero (and our legs) capable of covering some serious distance, making it an ideal platform for anglers but also casual paddlers, families, first-timers, and everyone in between.

Out of the box, the Lono Aero comes with just about everything you need to get on the water, including a removable center fin, a carry case, and a hand pump (currently, Bote is running a promotion that adds a free paddle with every kayak purchase).

The Aero Lono’s versatility makes it the vessel of choice for any waterperson, whether you’re heading out for an early morning fishing trip or leisurely afternoon paddle. Better yet, its durability and quality craftsmanship make it a purchase you can be confident in.

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The Bote Lono Aero even performs well when you’re back on shore. It folds down into a rollable case for transport, and it can fit into any SUV or larger sedan trunk. While it’s not ultra-compact when deflated, it does fit conveniently in almost any owner’s lifestyle—certainly more so than investing in an actual fishing boat.

With the Lono Aero, Bote is proving that inflatable kayaks don’t have to compromise on performance. As we dive into the warmer months of the year, this is the ultimate summer rig for any water enthusiast.

[$1749; boteboard.com]

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