The Hobie Mirage Revolution is the little brother of the Revolution 16, though boasts many of the same excellent features.
In our Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 Review, we’re going to dive in to this Mirage Drive-equipped speed demon to show you why it might be an excellent choice for you.
The Revolution 13 is incredibly stable for the knife-like design and has insane versatility with a myriad of features.
You also get tons of onboard storage for longer trips and a store-and-go rudder to give it more maneuverability.
Whether you’re fishing or taking a relaxing trip out on the water, it’s an excellent kayak. Now let’s take this review to the deep end.
Features and Benefits
The overall template of the Mirage Revolution 13 is the first thing you’ll notice when you look at it. Thanks to the knife-life design, you get a kayak that can cut through the water like nothing. It tracks incredibly straight as well. While you’re using the Drive system, this doesn’t really matter, though if you decide to paddle, know that the kayak will track like no other. The sleek design helps it to fit through tighter areas while the rudder helps to add easier maneuverability. You can turn on a dime and easily pedal forwards and backwards with the toggle of a switch.
The Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 comes with the Standard Drive system, which incorporates shorter fins. They give you a pretty solid amount of power though can easily be upgraded to turbo fins if you need more. You simply drop the Mirage drive into the well and lock it into place to get going. It’s easy to adjust the leg length on the drive system by lifting the pin out of the leg and placing it into the desired spot. Thanks to the numbers on the drive, you’re able to get each pin into the same position for symmetrical pedaling. If you decide that you want to go for a nice paddle one day, you can easily remove the drive system by unclipping it from the hull.
The seat that comes with the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 is incredibly comfortable. It is also easily adjustable and can be moved forward or back by using the two plastic pins. The back of the seat is equipped with an inflatable “comfort” pad that is actually pretty nice. The reclined design of the seat makes pedaling pretty similar to a stationary bike that you’d see at the gym. The point is, you can sit out on the lake for hours at a time without feeling your back aching.
There are three storage hatches that are built into the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13. The largest circular hatch is located in the cockpit right in front of your seat. This is where you can store a lot of your larger gear like trolleys. It is sealed with a rubber o-ring to help keep water out and comes with a small, removable accessory holder that is perfect small tools or pieces of tackle. At the front of the kayak, you have a large hatch that is secured to hull with crossed bungees. It’s a bit more difficult to access at sea, though can store some of your larger items like life vests, tackle boxes, etc. The other circular hatch is at the rear of the tankwell and also gives you access to the rudder cables in case of any problems out at sea. It is also twist-and-lock and completely waterproof.
As for additional storage, you have two tackle storage areas on each side of the seat that are made with webbed netting. This can be great for keeping small snacks, keys, etc. They can both be sealed with a small plastic button, though aren’t totally safe if you end up capsizing. Lastly, you have the tankwell located behind the seat. Though it’s shallow, it’s definitely large enough to store a big crate or cooler.
In terms of transportation, you have four handles. Two of the handles are toggle hands and are bolted into the front and back ends of the kayak. These are perfect for actually getting your kayak to and from the water. The other handles are rubber handles and are perfect for getting your kayak off the top of your car when you’re ready to go. You can also easily use one of these to carry your kayak from your side if you’re rolling solo.
Lastly, there is no shortage of accessories on the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13. You have a small area that is located right next to your feat that is great for mounting different accessories such as a Hobie Sail Kit, Go Pro Camera Mounts, or even fishing rods. Besides that, you also have two fishing rod holders that are built flush on each side behind the seat. This is excellent for allowing you to cast multiple lines at once. The lowrance ready system on board is great for installing a fish finder without having to drill any holes or anything. Thirsty? You’ll be happy to know there are two drink holders to keep your frothy brews nice and safe.
The Hobie Mirage isn't the only kayak with outstanding features. Come check out our reviews of the top kayaks on the market on our kayak main guide!
How To Get Started
Get A Lesson or Learn From a Friend
Either pay for a lesson in kayaking before you go out or go with someone who can teach you the basics. You may think that paddling or pedaling a kayak is the simplest thing in the world, and while most anyone can do it, getting the most efficiency out of your time spent in the water requires the proper technique. Recovering from capsizing requires even more serious technique.
Wear the Proper Gear
Even on a hot summer day the water can be very cold. Always make sure that you dress for the temperature of the water, not the air. Wet shoes are a good idea for when you’re launching, or if you want to go swimming. They give you plenty of grip on slippery surfaces and are very inexpensive. As for shirts, most serious kayakers wear some sort of dry top to stay as dry as possible. On colder days, we recommend getting some sort of neoprene suit or gloves to stay as warm as possible. Lastly, make sure to ALWAYS have a life jacket on board, whether you are an excellent swimmer or not. Things happen out in the water that you can’t control and it’s best to always be prepared.
Learn How To Hold Your Paddle
Tons of newbies hold their paddles the wrong way the first few times that they’re out in the water. To make sure you’re holding it properly, take both hands to the paddle and grip it with your arms shoulder width apart. Balance it so that the blades are parallel to the water. Your knuckles should be in line with the blades.
Dropping the Drive and Rudder
You need to be AT LEAST knee deep before you think about dropping the drive. Paddle out to deeper water first and then pop in your drive through the whole. Once you know that it’s safe, drop your rudder in the water by releasing the bungee cords that hold it secure to the hull. The right hand cockpit toggle that says “down” will be your release mechanism. You can control your rudder with the handle on the left of the seat.
Not much effort should be required to actually pedal your craft. Definitely get going with a few quick bursts, though once you’re out deeper in the water, you can use long and slow strokes to keep your momentum. Think of how swimmers use long and big strokes, not small dog paddles. If you need to switch your drive into reverse to pedal backwards at any point, pull the toggle that is in the cockpit near the drive.
Frequently Asked Question
Does the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 come with a warranty?
All of Hobie’s kayaks come with their two-year limited warranty. To actually utilize the warranty, you need to make sure that nothing is broken or damaged because of improper storage, alterations or modifications, improper transportation, etc. If it’s a manufacturer defect, Hobie will replace your kayak without any extra charge.
Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 vs. 13
The most obvious difference between the two kayaks is the size. The Hobie Mirage Revolution 11 is about 2 inches shorter at 11’6”. It also has a 275lb capacity, making it better suited for smaller guys and gals. Besides that, the weights, fully rigged and unrigged, are pretty similar, so it won’t make a huge difference which one you get.
Do note however that the Mirage Revolution 11 is slightly wider than the 13, giving it the advantage in terms of stability. It is very slight however, so again, no huge difference. If you’re bigger or want a kayak that might be a little faster overall, we would recommend going with the 13.
Hobie Mirage Revolution 16 vs. 13
The Hobie Mirage Revolution 16 is built more like a knife than the 13. Even at 16’, it is a few inches thinner than the 13 at 27.5”. The capacities are still the same at 350lbs each and the weights, fully rigged and unrigged, are pretty similar, each with about 5lb differences. If you’re serious about speed, we recommend going with the Revolution 16. That being said, you will be sacrificing overall stability.
Hobie Revolution 13 vs. Outback
The Hobie Mirage Outback has quite a few differences in comparison with the Revolution 13. It is slightly shorter at 12’9” and a bit wider at 34”. It’s incredibly stable and can easily hold up to 425lbs. That does come at a cost though, as it isn’t as fast and is much heavier.
The Hobie Mirage Outback has a nice vertical rectangular hatch in front of the seat that is perfect for storing tackle boxes and other things similar. You also have utility tray holders on each side of the seat for holding items you may need close by. Lastly, you have dual rudder controls for easier maneuverability.
All that said, you unfortunately don’t have as much onboard storage with the Outback, as you’re missing the rear circular hatch. If you’re looking to fish or want a kayak with more stability, that is where the outback comes in handy. If you are just looking more for speed, we recommended going with the 13.
Overall, the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 can suit just about any style of fishing or recreational kayaking. It is a fast and durable kayak with tons of really cool features. You can spend years modifying this little kayak as well.
Considering this kayak for fishing, we have to give it an A+. It’s easily one of the most nimble kayaks on Hobie’s lineup and is incredibly versatile all around.
We hope that our review of the Hobie Mirage Revolution 13 was helpful on your kayak- purchasing journey. Have fun out on the lake this summer and be safe!
Hobie Mirage Revolution 13