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PostPosted: October 14th, 2016, 12:54 pm 
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Hello all,
I am hoping to do my first solo trip next summer, and I wonder how much slower I can expect to be paddling solo. I don't like to kill myself out there, and a typical distance for me and my daughter going tandem would be 14-24 kms in a day, depending on wind and weather.
Maria


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2016, 1:42 pm 
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Maria, solo tripping can be fantastic. You will definitely find yourself paddling in a different rhythm than when tandem tripping. Sometimes, however, if hanging around your site for several hours each day wears on you, you may find yourself extending your time on the water and putting in some serious mileage. If, though, you do like lounging about gazing at watery vistas, sipping on coffee, photographing flowers, mushrooms, trees, and rocks, and reading, writing, dreaming, then short paddle days will fit the bill. For a first-time solo I'd recommend very modest daily mileages with plenty of lounging time and evening paddling and/or fishing the shores near your site. Why rush from one lake to another? There's lots to see and do on each new lake you visit. 10-15 km. per day between campsites, including double-carries on two or three portages, are more than enough. Two-nighters on the same site are great, too. I hope your first efforts prove pleasurable. All the best!


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2016, 4:31 pm 
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Location: Milton
There will be lots of advice... 8)
But in the end you will have find what works for you and your goals of your trip.
(it's like paddle and boat discussions.... :lol: )
If your route is going to be on some big open lakes or longer distances I would suggest using a double blade.

I just got back from my annual Agawa trip and I paddled from the mouth of the river to the Agawa Bay campground with sustained 30k winds and gusts to 50k. There is no way I could have done that with a single blade and I would not have even attempted it. (my choice of boat was a big factor too. It was a solo large volume WW boat)

Into a med to strong headwind you will at least be able to make some headway.
Since it is your first take that into consideration, there are plenty of routes that can be found that you can do at a much more enjoyable pace and still not see people and have that "solo" experience.

I would also make sure you have a good number of paddling K's under your belt, whether solo or tandem. It will make your tripping distance that much easier, also it will make paddling in tougher conditions much more bearable.

This year I am well over 2000 K's and I have not enjoyed paddling this much in a long time, most of it has been local get in shape paddles. (Being retired has it's benefits! ) add that with a lot of hiking prep has made the trips I have done easier, even in some sketchy conditions and situations.

Whatever you choose, just pick a pace that is comfy for you and have some built in time incase the weather goes south.

Jeff

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Choosing to save a river is more often an act of passion than of careful calculation. You make the choice because the river has touched your life in an intimate and irreversible way, because you are unwilling to accept its loss. — (David Bolling, Ho


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2016, 7:14 pm 
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Location: GTA
You asked about speed solo -vs- speed with your daughter. (I think.) In my experience I paddle just about the same speed solo as tandem, depending on my tandem partner. With a strong tandem partner the speed can increase a fair bit, but with an "average" partner I really don't think we go much faster. (Like maybe 0.5 km per hour faster.) I have a dedicated solo boat though, which is narrow and just about as long as my tandem so that helps with the speed. If I was actually paddling the tandem solo I think I'd be probably about 25% slower than with a partner.

I see it's your first post. Welcome! I hope that you stay long and post regularly.


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PostPosted: October 14th, 2016, 10:29 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Start small Portaging eats more time than paddling. My solo budget was about 16 km a day in Algonquin with 5 portages a day
On Georgian Bay on a good day I did 37
In Quetico 27 but with 3 longish portages I was very tired


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PostPosted: October 18th, 2016, 4:37 pm 
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Location: Ringwood, NJ
I won't agree on same speed solo as tandem: an hour or two paddling solo in strong head or side-winds will get most paddlers exhausted; good tandem in these conditions will do twice as fast as solo. Portaging could take its toll as well, especially landings. And I saw campsites where it was nearly impossible to get out of the boat solo. Bottom line: I would be very conservative on my first trip, especially on bigger lakes and off the beaten path.


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PostPosted: October 19th, 2016, 11:51 am 
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Location: Huntsville Ont.
Off the beaten path... I've spent some time finding suitable campsites in remote areas. It's always nice to discover a fire pit, not so nice when it hasn't been used since the last forest fire.


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PostPosted: October 21st, 2016, 1:15 pm 
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Thank you all for your wonderful and helpful comments! You guys are all super! There are so many things to consider, and I will take all your advice into consideration. I'm sure I will have more questions when the paddling season comes nearer


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PostPosted: February 9th, 2017, 11:19 am 
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Good read, I'm thinking I may take my first solo trip this summer. Any good route recommendations?


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PostPosted: February 9th, 2017, 1:32 pm 
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A few years ago I planned a long paddle trip diagonally across the Adirondacks to my daughter's home in the far distant corner on Lake Champlain. Much of the route was well known to me and I had paddled over half in segments before. My boat was a 10.5 foot, 16 pound Hornbeck solo canoe, chosen due to numerous long portages I knew I had to make.

I had a full 2 weeks available if necessary, but expected and budgeted that I could complete the total 185 mile trip in 10 days. A total of 65 miles of various length carries later proved my choice of lightweight Hornbeck as good. Unfortunately, my paddling day hours ended up much longer than originally planned, because I foolishly chose the heat of mid-July when deer flies were at their vicious peak. To escape being eaten alive during rest stops and while camping I began my day early and ended late on the water. The portages turned into speedy foot races for survival. The extra time paddling brought my total trip time to just 7 days, averaging 26 miles/day. I surely would have preferred more leisure time instead, up to my original plan of 10 days.


Last edited by nessmuk on February 9th, 2017, 6:33 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: February 9th, 2017, 5:23 pm 
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
andrew_f wrote:
Good read, I'm thinking I may take my first solo trip this summer. Any good route recommendations?

No idea where you are.. It's best to keep first solos to a few days.. Committing to a long three week trip is unwise.. Ergo you don't to plan a trip in an area that is shorter than your drive there.

I have lots of Maine suggestions but if you live in western Ontario that is useless.


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PostPosted: February 14th, 2017, 4:25 pm 
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littleredcanoe wrote:
andrew_f wrote:
Good read, I'm thinking I may take my first solo trip this summer. Any good route recommendations?

No idea where you are.. It's best to keep first solos to a few days.. Committing to a long three week trip is unwise.. Ergo you don't to plan a trip in an area that is shorter than your drive there.

I have lots of Maine suggestions but if you live in western Ontario that is useless.



I'm in Ontario. I will likely try a 2 or 3 nighter for the first time probably in Algonquin or a somewhat populated destination just in case things go south.


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PostPosted: February 18th, 2017, 6:49 pm 
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I've done a lot of tandem trips, and several solo day trips - and one 7 day solo recently (my first). On my solo trip I discovered that portaging definitely took longer, but more than anything: camp chores ate up way more time than with a group or partner. The amount of time spent setting up camp, taking down camp, cooking, cleaning up, stowing gear, moving gear from landing to campsite, moving gear from campsite to landing, all took a *lot* longer (and I'm somewhat of a minimalist!).

I expected I might be bored or have too much time on my solo trip, but that was not the case. Correspondingly, wind and weather and the above mentioned increase in "chore" time, made me glad that I had planned conservative days (relative to what I would plan tandem or with a group). I also really enjoyed taking my time on the water, and not rushing through. Take photos if you like, drift with current or the wind if you can, stop to investigate things if you are interested. Everything slows down (wonderfully so) when solo.

My advice is to plan conservatively - you state 14-24k as your tandem pace, and I would plan on the lower end of that range. You can always plan in some side trips if the days and weather are favorable and you find extra time. Hope that helps!


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PostPosted: February 21st, 2017, 10:36 am 
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andrew_f wrote:
I'm in Ontario.
And I'm in Europe :) (unfortunately, not)


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PostPosted: February 21st, 2017, 7:31 pm 
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canoeguide wrote:
On my solo trip I discovered that portaging definitely took longer


...this may depend on who you portage with. I've rarely spent less time on portages with others when compared to when I'm solo.


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