View topic - Looking at getting into canoeing

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PostPosted: March 26th, 2014, 8:50 pm 
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Hi everyone,

I'm thinking about trying out this hole canoe thing :thumbup: Mostly just to get to those remote lakes to try and get some good fishing in, or just for something else to do on the week-ends besides going quading/camping.

I've been looking on kijiji for some cheap canoes and found an 11 footer made by "The Wolverine Company". Would an 11 foot canoe be too small for going on a weekend trip solo? The smaller canoe appeals to me because in my mind it would be easier to paddle, not because of the weight. If I end up getting hooked on this and get some practice in I might switch to a bigger one. Some info posted with it is that it has keel (not sure what that means), 27 and 1/4 beam, and weights around 35lbs. Here is a picture:


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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 6:36 am 
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Shorter doesn't mean "easier" - quite the opposite in fact, in many cases - shorter and narrower often means less forgiving of mistakes. There is also the issue of cargo-capacity - if you are taking extended trips, an 11' boat is going to limit what gear you can bring, and depending on how big a person you are, that capacity may be even further reduced.

The keel question is an interesting one - there are very few canoes made anymore which have keels (kind of a 'ridge' running the length of the bottom of the boat). Personally, I like them - many other folk can't stand them. Do a search on here & you'll find some fairly detailed discussions.

There is also the whole question of the materials the boat is made from. Again, much discussion.

For info on Wolverine canoes, see here:

http://myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.p ... 97&start=0

There is WAY too much involved in picking a canoe for me to answer in any detail. My best advice is for you to try as many models at dealers, rentals, friends, wherever, as you possibly can. Get as much information as you can possibly find, comparing the canoe's capabilities to your specific needs, and only then make your choice..... :)

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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 9:14 am 
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Everthing said is true . . . but this looks like a fairly conventional hull, weight is reasonable, and how much gear do you really need for a weekend fishing trip anyway? I'd be driven by price. At $300-$400 it would be a steal and if I didn't like it I could sell it for what I paid. At $750 and up -- maybe I would test drive it first.

The major caveat is that my experience is that newer paddlers don't like paddling solo in solo boats. They complain they are "tippy" because they aren't comfortable paddling them heeled over and the shorter length does make the boat turn if their forward stroke is less than perfect.


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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 4:14 pm 
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What they said!
If you never canoed before you would find it tippy, but not so much with gear in in.
For stability you would most likely have to kneel all the time
Would hold weekend gear no problem.
Is there a canoe group that is running pool sessions in your area you can try it out in.
Boat looks like it would have good speed, from the pic it looks like it is made with kevlar.
Like Peter said the price of around 3 to 4,
But the Boat does have some age to it.
Check the gel coat for flaking/cracking from age, on the inside the material will have "white" scars if it has been bounced around and damaged. (resin fractured)
Boat looks shallow enough you could double blade it if you want.
Jeff

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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 4:51 pm 
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My advice would be not to buy anything at this point. Test paddle definitely, but also rent canoes for your first few trips. If you buy *any* canoe at this point, you'll either:

Try out this canoeing business, decide it's not for you, and regret that thing taking up space in your garage
or
You'll love it, you'll go out a few times and learn more what suits your needs and paddling tastes... and inevitably realize the canoe you bought probably isn't what you would choose if you could do it again.

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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 6:08 pm 
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sk8r wrote:
Shorter doesn't mean "easier" - quite the opposite in fact, in many cases - shorter and narrower often means less forgiving of mistakes. There is also the issue of cargo-capacity - if you are taking extended trips, an 11' boat is going to limit what gear you can bring, and depending on how big a person you are, that capacity may be even further reduced.

The keel question is an interesting one - there are very few canoes made anymore which have keels (kind of a 'ridge' running the length of the bottom of the boat). Personally, I like them - many other folk can't stand them. Do a search on here & you'll find some fairly detailed discussions.

There is also the whole question of the materials the boat is made from. Again, much discussion.

For info on Wolverine canoes, see here:

http://myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.p ... 97&start=0

There is WAY too much involved in picking a canoe for me to answer in any detail. My best advice is for you to try as many models at dealers, rentals, friends, wherever, as you possibly can. Get as much information as you can possibly find, comparing the canoe's capabilities to your specific needs, and only then make your choice..... :)


Alright so a couple disadvantages would be that it's hard to control as a new paddler and not enough room for extended trips, and can feel tippy (I think I would get used to the tippy feeling fairly quickly). How many hours would you say it can take for a new paddler to make some decent time when canoeing? Would a shorter canoe be less capable on going out on decent size lakes compared to a longer one?

Also when renting a canoe is it yours for the week-end and you can go anywhere or do you need to stick with certain lakes?


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PostPosted: March 27th, 2014, 7:51 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
I have two little red canoes. One is 13 feet long and 26 inches wide. The other 14 feet long and 27.5 inches wide.

Because of the rapid taper in a short canoe I can't store a pack below gunwale level. I dislike carrying a pack upright due to its having a higher center of gravity.

So the 13 doesn't take a canoe pack at all. If the 14 didn't have thwarts every three feet it would take a canoe pack.

Volume wise I can't imagine packing an 11 foot canoe with a pack. You might pull it off using multiple small drybags like kayakers do but that is a PITA to repack into a bigger sack for portages.

Your 11 foot boat has a length to waterline ratio of less than 5, making it slow. It would be a fine daytripper at a cottage. But not so for tripping. Unless your technique is good the thing will spin like a top possibly making your outing no fun. Keels don't help going straight much.

35 lbs is attractive but heavy for an 11 footer. The boat also is priced pretty high.


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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 4:15 am 
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Alright thanks everyone, I think I'll pass on this one then and keep looking for something else. Might even go with renting one this spring.

Anyone have any quick recommendations for a solo canoe good tripping but also good for fishing? Or do all solo canoe pretty much fit the bill for fishing in them also? I would also like something comfortable incase I would need to paddle long distances.


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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 5:23 am 
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I've never found a canoe that wasn't good for fishing.......as long as you're comfortable in it, it can be a fishing platform along with whatever else you do with it..... :)


Image


With some practice (ok, a fair bit of practice.... :wink: ) you can even do it this way...


Image

Have fun & good hunting! :D

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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 2:55 pm 
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If you're just starting out into canoeing, my first priority would be STABILITY above all else. Nothing turns a beginner off more than a scary ride in a tippy canoe. My advice would be to sacrifice a bit of weight and speed and go for a rock solid canoe your first time out.

I have an old 16' aluminum Springbok canoe which I think is a great starter boat. It's not very pretty, it won't ever win any speed races, is a bit heavy and sometimes even a little noisy...But I still love it to death.

It has a bit of a wide flat bottom that makes it darn near untippable, which is great for beginners, choppy conditions, or for fishing out of. It's heavier than a fibreglass boat, but I can still carry it on my own over any portages I come across and it handles just about any abuse I can dish out. No problem at all handling all my gear for extended camping trips and is not really that bad to paddle long distances on my own.

Even after years of paddling I still gladly trade off some speed for increased stability and peace of mind on the water.

Mine looks a little like the ones in these pics and you can usually pick them up second hand for under $500 in pretty decent shape.

Good luck Sylvain and happy canoeing with whatever you decide.


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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 4:57 pm 
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Thanks for the input Joe, only reason I'm leaning towards a solo is because I've heard they're a lot easier to paddle when alone.


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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 5:43 pm 
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My profile image is going to give away my bias, but if you're looking for a solo craft... ever considered a kayak? :)

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PostPosted: March 28th, 2014, 7:09 pm 
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lol I did think about it I just don't know how comfortable it would be setting like that all day + fishing might be a pain? I've only been in one a long time ago and can't really remember what it was like :roll:


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PostPosted: March 29th, 2014, 10:09 am 
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We're missing data. The beam could be at rails, max or waterline, with significant affect on stability. More importantly, how tall is the paddler? Weight would be helpful too, but lots of folk regard that number as a closely held secret.

If the beam is max, that little boat is within the smaller array of pack canoes. If the OP is very compact it could work as a kneeling/sit high boat, but more probably it should have a low seat and footpegs added; converting it to a pack canoe for double paddle usage.

Hard tellin' not knowing...


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PostPosted: March 29th, 2014, 1:22 pm 
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I'm around 5,10'' and weight about 158lbs. I think I might pass on this one and go with something a little longer so it's easier to paddle in a straight line.


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