by  Mad River

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Eclipse Description

The Eclipse is a canoe brought to you by Mad River. Read Eclipse reviews or submit your own review to share with the paddling community. Check out a few other canoe recommendations below or explore all canoes to find the perfect one for you!

Mad River
Eclipse Reviews

Read reviews for the Eclipse by Mad River as submitted by your fellow paddlers. All of the reviews are created and written by paddlers like you, so be sure to submit your own review and be part of the community!

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I have owned my MR Eclipse…

Submitted by: paddler505020 on 5/7/2019

I have owned my MR Eclipse since 1999...I had waited for MR to come out with a Royalex version of the Malecite...and it was worth the wait...since its not possible to produce sharp edges in a plastic boat the Eclipse is a little slower and heavier than the Malecite although I do enjoy the toughness of the Royalex layup...I sold Mad River for several years at nation wide outdoor shops and one whitewater rafting company in NC...where I paddled class 2-3 rivers daily...the Eclipse can handle that level of rapids properly outfitted with flotation and paddled by the right person...on bigger water the Eclipse gets pushed around a wee bit due to a modest slight rocker and 16ft length.... still for a fun day on the river or lake it is hard to beat this sweet here is the bad side...Royalex will develop cold cracks due to the material contracting greater than the gunwales do during cold weather...something that I was not aware of even though I went to all the clinics and studied all materials made about these boats...mine has several cold cracks below the water line and will be my next repair days MR says to back off the screws in the gunwales so the Royalex can contract and not crack.....all well but I have aluminum gunwales and they are riveted on ... no screws to back out....thanks MR... will they stand behind it....NO....bad decision on their seems Royalex and aluminum are not compatible in colder climates and that IS a material defect for the intended purpose these canoes are sold I love the Eclipse...YES....and most of the other Jim Henry designs....I hate that MR is making cheap crap to sell in the lower price markets...must be greed getting in the way of what made MR a great canoe company back in the learn how to repair Rolayex on your own...or park you boat in the living room behind the sofa if it gets cold out...but other than that love the design...not the customer support. 5 stars for stars for screwing us over the Royalex cold crack are suppose to float...


Great canoe - light & fits up…

Submitted by: stonesgl on 3/20/2013
Great canoe - light & fits up to 4 paddlers if weight is distributed evenly or 2 adults with children. Lots of room for gear. Slices thru the water. Great for day trips or camping with 2 persons. Lightweight for loading.

I have owned my Eclipse for 5…

Submitted by: HollyJane on 8/14/2005
I have owned my Eclipse for 5+ years. I solo paddle, almost exclusively, on a very manageable lake/s and have been very happy with the performance and the weight. BUT, mine developed 3 COLD CRACKS two winters ago. These have been repaired, at great psychic expense, and the boat still performs well, although I suspect its $ value is very low. I have been very unhappy with service and response from Mad River at all levels. Very disappointing experience that took 1+ years to resolve. Mad River now calls cold cracks a Material Limitation and does not consider them a material or manufacturing defect! Because, I believe, I bought the boat before their position on cold cracks was clearly stated in their manual and warranty and by their dealers, they agreed to sell me a new canoe at half the cost. Something I should be grateful for, judging by the way they treated me, but not really what I wanted to do. Canoe Rating: 9 of 10 Service Rating: 1 of 10

Have had this canoe for two…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 9/19/2001
Have had this canoe for two weeks now, and have paddled it on a couple of flat rivers. I shopped around for royalex canoes extensively and tried several out. I wanted royalex because it is cheaper. The Eclipse handles really well - better than any I tried. The tracking is excellent because of the shallow "v" hull, ant also manuever well. Best of all is the way it glides after each power stroke. The only drawback is the weight - I would't want to portage it to far. But at 62 pounds it would be doable.

I purchased a used (for one…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/2/2001
I purchased a used (for one year) Eclipse from an outfitter. The exterior coating was worn through at the bow and stern (no skid plates installed), and there were also a lot of scratches in the skin, but I saved about $400. I added a solo seat and removable yoke from Bell Canoe Portaging the canoe is not a problem for me.

The Eclipse was purchased to be used in tandem with Minnesota II on trips, and so is typically lightly loaded. I have soloed the canoe on a four day trip, and loaned it to two Boy Scouts, also on a four day trip. The canoe soloes very nicely using either a C-stroke or a hit-and-switch. The hit-and-switch method is significantly faster, seems to be less tiring. On the trip I soloed, I carried two gear bags and one 70 lb. dog, and was able to keep up with the tandem canoes in the party. When the scouts were using the Eclipse most of the troop was using 16 foot Penobscots. The Eclipse seemed to be quite a bit faster and less affected by the wind, but likely could not have carried as heavey a load as the Penobscots.

Overall I am very happy with my Eclipse as it does everything that I bought it for. I wish it were a bit more efficient, but the durability of the Roylex offsets the slight efficiency penalty.


Really nice canoe, either…

Submitted by: paddler228830 on 9/12/2000
Really nice canoe, either tandem or solo. The secondary stability is really solid, and the amount of lean very predictable. Low enough with two to not catch too much wind, and high enough to stay dry in 2-foot wind waves. Just barely light enough for one person to handle. Needs center seat for soloing. Very user friendly.

Very nice canoe. We haven't…

Submitted by: c2g on 9/5/2000
Very nice canoe. We haven't had ours very long, but I've had it out with just one other person, and also with six people (two adults and four small children) in the boat (about 600 pounds total load). It tracks fairly well, has good initial and excellent secondary stability, and is easy to maneuver. It glides well also, and we can hold it at a comfortable cruising speed without much trouble. Mad River says that the Eclipse is similar to the Malecite, but because it is Royalite, it is about $1,000 cheaper. We haven't had any other nice canoes that we can compare it to, but it is a tremendouse improvement over the aluminum rental boats that we have paddled before. Definitely a boat I would buy again!

The Eclipse was a gift, and…

Submitted by: guest-paddler on 7/12/2000
The Eclipse was a gift, and much appreciated. However, in class III water I managed to cause serious damage to the bottom, with the outer layer of the "royalex light" tearing and pealing away as a result of running across rocks. No question I abused the boat. This is not what it was made for, and MR makes that clear in its literature. I understood that it was made from royalex, but hadn't checked it out thoroughly before heading down-river, and didn't know about "royalex light." Buyers should be aware that this boat is not tough enough for "white water" of any kind. It's a nice, lightweight boat for flat water and maybe class II. Also, I should note that the coating readily peals away from the aluminum gunwales -- at three years old, they look like old anodized spars, with the black pealing off all over the place. Hard to say I love the boat. It is a fine little boat for the money, as long as you treat it only to the relatively quiet conditions it was made for.

This is an absolutely great…

Submitted by: paddler228656 on 6/8/2000
This is an absolutely great canoe. I mostly use it for solo paddling. I am considering adding a center seat and possibly a spray skirt. I have found that installing kevlar skid pads are easy and one of the best accessories that a person can install to protect a canoe from rocks. I would refer anyone to a MRC dealer to get a canoe. I love my Eclipse!

Light tandem. Maneuverable…

Submitted by: paddler228559 on 4/23/2000
Light tandem. Maneuverable enough for the winding Pine Barrens rivers that we mainly paddle. Cruises very well; good speed. Had it on class II, and it handled fine, though the gunwales are low for much more than II or III. We put in center seat for our son, and it it is also an excellent solo boat. Royalex light, it's passably durable over the rocks, but it's not made for boulder gardens or heavy duty white water. I like the weight savings. Because we abuse it, I'm installing skid plates.

This is the first canoe that…

Submitted by: paddler228441 on 2/6/2000
This is the first canoe that we have owned. My wife and I are very pleased with the stability and tracking. We have used it on short, flatwater day trips and it handles well, especially for us newbies. We have paddled 3 other models and like this one best. Also, the light weight makes for an easy to cartop/portage canoe. Even in Royalex lightweight, it is very sturdy feeling.