Since Hobie invented pedal kayaks 20 years ago, they’ve been running a race to stay ahead of the pack.

Each generation of the MirageDrive pedal system improved on the last to increase speed, performance and durability.

Two years ago, they added the MirageDrive 180, with a reverse gear. While the MD180 was a great improvement on the previous models, it didn’t offer instant reverse, like a propeller pedal drive.

At ICAST 2019, Hobie stole the show unveiling the unbelievable MirageDrive 360. Using a dial on the rudder control, the driver can spin the MirageDrive fins 360 degrees to go forward, backward, even sideways.

Used in conjunction with the rudder, the MD 360 allows an angler to maneuver into the tightest place or spin in circles. The fins can even operate in shallow-water mode in any direction.

Hobie solved another problem with the system, adding kick-up fins that fold out of the way if they hit an obstruction.

The MD 360 will be available on Arctic Blue Hobie ProAngler 14 ($4799) and 12 ($4649) models.

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“Thank God my dad wasn’t a podiatrist,” jokes Ric about following in the footsteps of a famous outdoor writer. After graduating from Radford University and serving two years in Russia with the Peace Corps, Ric returned to Virginia Beach and started writing for The Fisherman magazine, where his dad was editor. When the kayak fishing scene exploded, Ric was among the first to get onboard. His 2007 book, The Complete Kayak Fisherman is one of the first tomes to introduce anglers to paddle fishing and hundreds of articles and seminars have brought countless anglers into the fold. When he’s not chasing every fish that swims, Ric teaches English at a school for at-risk teens.


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