Let me start out by saying I have only been in a kayak once so I don't have very much experience with them.
At my local water there was a scout group kayaking in the water I was fishing.I asked the group leader about the stability of the kayaks for fishing and he offered to let me try his out for a while.
It seemed very stable to fish out of on still water.I have canoed in class2 rivers with dismal results.A lot of tip overs and gear recovery
The model I tried was called the 'Dagger Delta' It had steering pedals and decent cargo space.I don't know how well I could handle it on the class 2 river,but it looks to be a lot more stable than a death trap...er...canoe.
The guide told me that the 'Dagger Delta' was available at a local dealer for around $400-500.
My question to you is;
Would this be a good choice for a beginning kayaker?
I definitely don't want to spend more than $500.
If I could pick up a tandem model for not too much more that would be even better,as my girlfriend likes to float/fish as well.If the stability/cargo would not be sacraficed too much.