By Thomas J. Sullivan–
Carl Haussmann, owner of Adventure Sports-Kayak City, at 7812 Auburn Blvd. in Citrus Heights, considers his company to be “the largest kayak-exclusive shop in the U.S.”
His 7,000-square-foot showroom opened a little over a year ago near the intersection of Antelope Road and Auburn Boulevard, following a move from the shop’s former location on El Camino Avenue in Sacramento.
“We have a very knowledgeable staff who truly know the water,” Haussmann told The Sentinel in an interview last week. “We also service what we sell, and our overall retail product line of kayak manufacturers and accessories is among the very best.”
Kayak City is well-known in the local kayaking community and is a regular exhibitor at the International Sportsmen’s Exposition in Sacramento each year. The company also offers rentals, with a seasonal rental concession at Lake Natoma and Negro Bar State Park in Folsom, running April through September each year.
According to its founder, the company has come a long way in the 25 years since it first opened in Folsom and then moved to Sacramento, before finally settling in Citrus Heights.
“We started out selling backpacking supplies, tents and outdoor gear,” Haussmann said. “We then moved into selling canoes and kayaks not long after, and our business took off.”
Today, Kayak City’s primary retail showroom on Auburn Boulevard features dozens of colorful kayaks of all types on display. A second retail showroom location is open in Stockton at 1818 West Fremont Street.
Haussmann offered a walk around the showroom floor, where he identified the latest in fishing kayaks equipped with a variety of GPS navigation gear and fish finders. The popular sport of kayak fishing is one of the fastest-growing components of his overall sales, he said.
His product line includes Hobie, Old Town, Native Watercraft, Wilderness Systems, Jackson Kayaks, and Eddyline, to name a few best sellers. A used 12-foot-3-inch 2017 Wilderness Systems Tarpon 120 Angler Pro Package weighs about 63 pounds and starts at just under $2,000.
Haussmann said some of his customers start with a kayak rental experience and then go shopping for their own. Customers can elect to buy an inexpensive starter kayak, or purchase a new one customized with a variety of options best suiting their needs. The average kayak is eight feet long, so a roof rack or trailer is often needed.
The company also sells Cub Cadet Utility vehicles, featuring on-demand four-wheel drive. The versatile vehicles feature an adjustable four-wheel suspension and are tough enough for off-road trails.
“Business has been growing steadily as more people move to this area and discover all that our region has to offer,” Haussmann said. “It’s going to be a very busy season on the water.”
Kayak City is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The company also has an extensive catalog of new and used kayaks, package deals and accessories available through its website at www.kayakcity.com