Getting Started?

Posted by: Samoset

Getting Started? - 09/10/12 10:52 PM

So I recently returned from a well needed car camping trip. On lake Marion in SC with my wife, kids, father and step mother?

From the moment of arrival. I had the the feeling I was forgetting something! anyone who has ever been camping for any extended period of time probably knows this feeling quite well!

It took my father driving myself and my kids around in his john boat and finally his outboard motor crapping out, and me trolling the two of us 2+ miles back to camp before it hit me!

We still have four days of camping and fishing left and this boat is not ment for paddeling. " I FORGOT TO BUY THE CANOE I ALWAYS WANTED wink "

So long story sho0rt I'm looking for that canoe! Something that can fit us all on flat wAter with minimal gear. My wife and I for weekend trips. That is still capable of solo fishing !

There's a lot of boats out there. So far I'm looking ad mad rivers malecite, and wenonahs escapade . I'm in no hurry as ill probably wait till things warm back up mid spring next year before making a purchase!

But any advice would be a start. And ill update this thread as my research continues!
Posted by: Dryer

Re: Getting Started? - 09/11/12 11:05 AM

As with anything, money talks. A Scoutmaster friend of mine had a lot of praise for the Wenonah kevlar boats the scout troop used at the Boundary Waters. Light weight is a very good thing.
Of course, fun may be had in any canoe. I still have a 19' Grumman aluminum that has been with us 30+ years, has a square transome for a motor, has a sailing kit, paddles great, but weighs so much it requires a trailer. That thing holds enough junk for 3 people...the "Family Truckster" of canoes. All my other boats are kayaks or sailboats.
Posted by: Samoset

Re: Getting Started? - 09/11/12 10:16 PM

I have to agree with you dryer. Money does talk. Both of these boats are at the top of what Id be willing to spend new. I'm hoping to find something used. If not I have the better part of a year to save for it.

One thing I've found to be true in the outdoor industry is that if you know what your looking at you get what you pay for!

My intentions is to be able to hand this boat down to my two sons as they get older. And buy something UL for my wife and myself as we get older!

The reason in looking at these two boats in particular is they both get great reveiws and they are light enough for me to roof/portage alone!
Posted by: kindone

Re: Getting Started? - 09/23/12 09:32 AM

I have to disagree, I would buy a $100 beater off of craigslist that floats and spend the better part of a year on the water with the family and the canoe fund $100 short. Then when the kids are bigger you will have the 2 canoes you will need.Nice one for mom and dad and old junker the kids grew up in. Just my 2 cents, hope you find what you need.
Posted by: DTape

Re: Getting Started? - 09/23/12 10:25 AM

My solo canoe is one I bought used. I consider it my beater, though back in its day it was likely quite pricey. It is a bell bucktail, fiberglass. I picked it up for 300 bucks. Since it already has all the scrapes, and nicks I never felt bad running over beaver dams or wincing when I hit the first few rocks or logs.

My tandem is a kevlar boat. Also a Bell. I spent some coin on that. A paddling friend of mine and I recently took it up and back the Oswegatchie river. He was nervous of all the rocks and such, but I re-assured him that she could handle it and the gel is there to protect the skin and the scratches in the gel coat are just memories.
Posted by: Barefoot Friar

Re: Getting Started? - 10/10/12 10:39 AM

I have to agree with kindone. I've heard the same thing about buying motorcycles: "You're going to lay it down on the pavement at some point, so it's better to have a cheap one that doesn't really matter. Then once you've done that you can get the bike you really want."

Only in this case you get to keep the first canoe. And when the kids get to be teens, the old beater canoe is the one they get to take out.

I've got a plastic three-seater that I got for a couple hundred on sale at Academy Sports a couple summers ago. It's not the best thing, but I've done a lot with it, and it's still going. One of these days I'm either going to have a 16' kayak or an Old Town canoe. Or both.
Posted by: Jimshaw

Re: Getting Started? - 11/03/12 12:54 AM


no no, the saying goes - never have a motorcycle more valuable than your body, so you don't sacrifice to save the bike. crazy


As for a first canoe - I'd have to agree with buying a used one and learning to canoe before buying a nice one since you will not know what you really want at first and 2 nice canoes is not a cheap solution.
Jim grin
Posted by: Samoset

Re: Getting Started? - 08/20/13 01:05 PM

Appreciate the advice everyone! I agree I'm trying to find a decent used canoe for my family to start out with!
Posted by: BrianSnat

Re: Getting Started? - 06/20/14 08:30 AM

If you can find a used Mad River Explorer, that may be a good choice. It's not great at any one thing, but does almost everything fairly well. It's a load monster that will carry your whole family and gear and I've fished mine solo many times. If you turn it stern first and sit in the "front" seat you are perfectly positioned for solo paddling.

Another good choice would be a Prospector model. It's a versatile design that is made by most major canoe mfrs., precisely because of its versatility.