Hobie Mirage Compass Review

​Fishing is one of the ultimate pastimes.

In this Hobie Mirage Compass Review, we’re going to discuss why this self-propelled kayak opens up a world of possibilities for those who want the hassle of having a full boat to fish with.


​Spin propeller tech has been around forever, though we’re just beginning to see a new kind of propeller tech on kayaks like the Hobie Mirage Compass.

These little wings that push you through the water make it incredibly stable, very versatile, and extremely subtle, perfect for fishing.

This may be one of Hobie’s most high-quality kayaks, so let’s dig into what makes it such an awesome water vessel for fishing veterans.

​The Review

Hobie Mirage Compass


  • ​1-Person Seating
  • ​12’ in Length
  • ​34” in Width
  • ​400lb. Capacity
  • ​Fitted Hull Weight: 68lbs
  • ​Fully Rigged Weight: 87lbs
  • ​Rotomolded Polyethylene Build


  • ​Excellent and Unique Drive System
  • ​Comfortable and Breathable Mesh Seating
  • ​Tons of Onboard Storage
  • ​Perfect Amount of Width for Stability
  • ​Easy to Install Accessories Onboard
  • ​Lots of Weight Capacity for Gear


  • ​Very High Price for Most Consumers
  • ​No Built-In Tracks

Features and Benefits

Mirage Drive System

​The drive system that is fitted to the Hobie Mirage Compass is easily the most prominent feature and the reason why so many fell in love with this kayak. The idea of kayak propulsion has been around for a few decades now. The manufacturers over at Hobie decided it was time to give kayak propulsion a much-needed update. The Hobie Mirage Drive System with Glide Technology essentially gives you a hands-free pedal experience, making pedaling far more efficient.

The Glide technology includes roller bearing in specific friction points that help make the ride much smoother than with other drive systems. You can even choose which type of fin you want, each with their own specialty


​The seat that is included with the Hobie Mirage Compass is probably one of the most comfortable and practical kayak chairs out there. The chair is constructed with a breathable mesh fabric that can keep you nice and cool on days where the sun isn’t friendly. It also comes with a backrest that can easily be adjusted. This is great if you’re out on the lake for hours at a time and need to keep your lumbar support in check. Lastly, the chair is mounted up and out of the hull of the kayak. This is absolutely perfect for fishing, as you can maintain a good vantage point and easily move yourself quickly if need be.


Storage is an absolutely necessity if you’re going to be fishing seriously. For starters, there is a small 8” twist and seal storage hatch located right in front of the seat that can easily be screwed and unscrewed. It’s perfect for items that you would like to keep dry, as it’s pretty much the only “watertight” storage compartment located on the kayak.

On the bow of the kayak, as well as the stern, you’ll find plenty of room for storing things above deck. Whether, you want to store an H-Create, a Livewell, or a cooler full of beers, the mesh covered bow storage area and the bungee tie-down stern area, are awesome.

Lastly, there are tons of other random compartments and storage areas about the kayak. You can easily fit tackle storage underneath your seat, drinks into the cup holder on the right of the seat, or fishing rods in the fishing rod holders located to the left and right of the seat.


​The updated Mirage Drive System comes with an updated steering system as well. On other Hobie Kayaks like the Hobie Outback, you’ll find that the rudder is connected to a lever that sits right next to your body below your hip. While it certainly does its job, we find that the steering system on the Mirage Compass makes even more sense and really helps in terms of fishing.

If you’re looking to paddle, you can easily put the spring-loaded rudder flush with the steering system. When you need to use the steering system, it automatically kicks up when hit for truly easy fingertip steering.


​Compared to other Hobie kayaks on the market, the Mirage Compass is probably the best one for fishing. It is 12’ in length, giving you plenty of room from front to back, and 34” in width, making it wide enough for bigger riders. The width also makes it extremely stable. At 87lbs in fully rigged weight, you may need to get a cart to transport it, though you will be happy knowing you’re not riding a cheap piece of plastic in the water. With a 400lb capacity and a one-man seat, it means you’ll most likely have at least 100lbs of space left over for whatever gear you decide to bring.


Lowrance Ready

​The Hobie Mirage Compass comes with an array of cool accessories. For starters, this yak comes complete with a transducer mounting plate on the bottom. This is great for ledge fishing, as you really need to know what the water under you looks like to have the best chance of catching fish. The H-Tracks are perfect for easily mounting gear on the sides of the boat. Many people use these to mount on their fish finders.

​Who is This Kayak Pe​rfect For?

​The Hobie Mirage Kayak is perfect for those who love to fish. For the price alone, we would probably recommend it to experienced kayakers, as it may be a lot to swallow for those just getting into the sport. Don’t worry though, if you want to let the kids take a ride, the drive system is very easy for beginners to get the hang of! There’s tons of onboard storage for fishing gear, it’s easy and stable enough to stand up on, and it has fishing rod holders, meaning you can cast multiple lines at once.

You can use it in both flat freshwater or open ocean water, though we wouldn’t recommend it if the chop becomes too heavy. The skinny bow at the front makes it easier to navigate through tight spaces and allows the boat to cut through water a bit better than other wide, low-end kayaks. We also wouldn’t recommend this boat if you’ll be out for more than a day, as there simply isn’t enough room or storage to pack for weekend trips.

If you're looking for a kayak that is more suited towards easy paddling or touring, check out our best kayak homepage.

Frequently Asked Questions​

Hobie Mirage Compass Vs. Outback

Though it may not be obvious at first, there are differences in size between the two. The Mirage Outback stands at 12’1” and 33” wide while the Compass is 12’ and 34” wide, making the Compass a bit more stable. When fully rigged, the Outback is 99lbs, making it over 10lbs heavier than the Compass.

The Outback comes with the Mirage Drive 180, meaning you can easily go into reverse with kayak at the flip of a switch. This is pretty unique and definitely trumps the Compass in terms of maneuverability. It also comes completely with a stow rudder that is retractable, meaning it handles a bit better in rougher waters and really helps you to track much more easily.

Onboard, you’ll find that the Mirage Outback has a bit more storage capabilities. You have dry storage on the bow that is held down by two bungee cords, two twist and screw storage ports located in front of the seat and on the bow, more storage under the seat, one large above deck area rigged with bungee cords on the stern, two mesh pockets built into the sides for small accessories, and one cup holder. If you’re serious about storage, the Outback wins on this term.

How do I store my Hobie Mirage Compass?

Because this is one large piece of Rotomolded Polyethylene, you’ll definitely need some sort of large space to store it in. Whether you want to keep it on the ground or atop a few crossbars is up to you. Even with the tough rails and durable underside, it is necessary to store it atop something that is padded, as you don’t want any dents or marks. We would also recommend keeping it out of direct sunlight so it doesn’t warp from the heat.

​Overall Rating

If you want one of the best fishing kayaks out there, you should definitely look into the Hobie Mirage Compass. It’s a pro kayak that is for those who are serious about the sport.

If you’re looking buying a kayak that you can maybe use a couple times a year, we wouldn’t recommend spending the money on this one.

For its durability, drive, storage, and stability, we have to give this bad boy an A+.

There are some seriously awesome features that Hobie has included on this yak and it makes it very unique compared to other Hobie models out there.

should you buy?