Read reviews for the Escapade by Wenonah Canoe, Inc. as submitted by your fellow paddlers.
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We recently purchased our…
We recently purchased our Wenonah Escapade through Udo Wald and Janet Nichols at Back of the Beyond on Bainbridge Island. First voyage was Angle Lake in WA to get our feet wet on how she handles and were very impressed to say the least.
This 16' 6" canoe glides effortlessly through the water and felt very stable once we got used to it. We decided on the kevlar version to make it easier to transport and handle as a tandem or solo canoe and don't regret it at all.
Our second voyage was out in Puget Sound from Seahurst Park, WA and it handled very well in light wind and calm waters. It was a blast exploring the coastline down towards Three Tree Point. Once again the handling, balance, and overall feel of this canoe is amazing. A few rollers came in from the NW and she handled very well when it became a bit rough in spots.
The fit and finish is 4 out of 5 stars as there are a few areas where the surface has a few minor blemishes in the finish. Considering the price and material used, it might be tempting to assume it would arrive in perfect condition. The small blemishes are purely cosmetic and don't affect performance or even the overall appearance, so it's not a concern.
Working with Udo and Janet was the best experience ever. Udo was extremely helpful in helping us choose the right model, and he was very down to earth and practical in all of his recommendations. If you are in need of a canoe here in WA, make sure you reach out to Udo and he will definitely get you out on the water with the right canoe.
Have had the boat only a few…
Have had the boat only a few weeks; paddled probably 40 miles on Columbia River. Very happy with it, but one aesthetic complaint: the gunnels and thwarts are beautifully done. Very nice. The seat bases, on the other hand, look like something I cobbled together in my garage! It's hard for me to imagine the same person designed the gunnels and thwarts and also the seat bases! Beautiful boat, overall, but the seat bases need work!
I submitted a review 7 years…
I submitted a review 7 years ago....well, it is 7 years later and I still love the boat. My daughter is 20 years old and we just finished about our 20th race. The only caveat I'd have is that the front seat is a bit tight so it probably isn't the best for larger people. The only thing I'd change is to get it in white to hide the scratches. We paddle a lot of shallow rivers.
I purchased the Wenonah…
I purchased the Wenonah Escapade 2 weeks ago after reviewing many models for the last year. I do a variety of canoeing in many types of conditions. Over half the time I solo. From my research, the Escapade seemed the best match for me. The Escapade replaces a royalex 16' Old Town Penobscot which I paddled for 22 years. I was looking for better speed, straighter tracking and also better solo handling. I do a variety of paddling so it is hard to find one canoe that fits for me. The Penobscot was a good choice for many years. My main reason to look at something different was that on flat water trips my wife and I had to paddle hard to keep up with our friends who own faster performance canoes (whereas they were taking it easy).
The main trade off for me is for river trips where there are class I and sometimes class II rapids. Also I frequently canoe in low water conditions where scraping gravel and rocks is the norm. I soloed the Escapade down a reach of the upper St. Croix yesterday. Water was high so avoiding rocks was easy. I found the Escapade could handle the rapids quite well - mostly class I and one class II. I don't advocate this canoe for white water but I am not going to portage every time I see a riffle. I was very surprised at the stability. I went through some standing waves that appeared higher than the gunnels and it did not take on any water and I never felt in danger of tipping even when I got turned almost side ways. I found it very manuevarable. This was especially noticeable in that I had a stiff head wind the whole trip. The speed is excellent.
For my canoeing, the main trade off is that the Tuff Weave gel coat is very easily scratched as compared to the royalex hull I am used to. So rock avoidance is now a high priority whereas with the Penobscot it was an afterthought. Overall, I think the Escapade performs better than I had anticipated for stability and maneuvarability. It is fast and fun to paddle and a "pretty" canoe at that.
Purchased the Escapade new…
Purchased the Escapade new last year from Fluid Fun in Bristol, IN. Ours is Kevlar Flexcore lay-up. Weighs 51lbs. We love this boat! Owned an Adirondack in Royalex, and wanted something a little lighter and faster. Boat is stable, fast, and has the infamous Wenonah glide. I am overall, very satisfied with this purchase. I would buy it again in a heartbeat.
I was going to buy a MN II…
I was going to buy a MN II when the dealer had me try out the Escapade in the Kevlar ultralight layup. I was looking for a "second" boat for tripping with my family and the solo possibilities and of the smaller boat was attractive because I figured that I could always ferry extra gear in my 18'6" stripper (White Guide design). Paddling the Escapade sold me on it. This boat does everything well. It is a joy to paddle solo and empty as I did nearly every weekend during July and August. We took it on a week-long trip to Isle Royale and were surprised at its capability as a tripping boat. It carried 2 adults, a six-year-old and 2 relatively heavy gear bags much better than I expected. My paddling buddy who's more of a canoe nerd than I am was similarly impressed.
We've had Kevlar Flexcore…
We've had Kevlar Flexcore version of this canoe since May of this year and have had a full season of paddling thus far. We have done primarily recreational lake paddling but have also had about four days of river travel as well. We have paddled with gear and without, but always with our dog. This is our first canoe and we are very pleased. We've paddled others, but this canoe does not compare to anything else we've tried. It is fast! It maneuvers well, can carry load and is light. My only complaints are initial stability when paddling without a load and the durability of the gelcoat surface; it scratches a little easier than I had hoped. Overall, a wonderfully versatile and responsive canoe.
Our new Escapade in kevlar…
Our new Escapade in kevlar has brought back adventure and thrill to the canoeing experience. The slider bow seat is great for trimming a 400 lb. load, including an 80 lb. dog. We easily maintain a cruising speed, and even when letting off, the canoe seems to keep the momentum on its own for some distance. Well, our well designed royalex canoe would do this too, but only at half of the speed of the Escapade. It's actually hard to believe that it is so fast, tracks so well, and also can be spun around if needed. I'll have to restrain the dog to the center area, though, as 80 pounds flopping down on either side next to the gunnel does affect handling, although not seriously. Initial stability is better than I expected, especially underway, and secondary is superb. And gosh darn, it even has capabilities for solo acrobatics and improvisation. Rated 9, instead of 10, because the kevlar high pricing adversely affects affordability, although it is not a fluke inherent to actual use of the canoe. Would buy again, and lower priced layups are available if canoe weight is not a concern.
I bought this boat in…
I bought this boat in Tuffweave last week from Fluidfun in Bristol, IN (great experience) and just got back from its first paddle -- a local canoe marathon -- and I could not be much happier. I bought it with the intention of using it with my 13 year old daughter mostly with my wife occasionally taking a center seat. I considered some larger canoes like the Sundowner, Spirit II and the Escape. The first two felt very slow by comparison. The Escape seems about as fast (it was 1 ft longer), but front is flared and my daughter had a harder time reaching when in the front. We tried the Solo II and might have considered that except three people was impossible.
The boat tracks great. We could trim it out well with the front sliding seat. It is a great physical fit for my daughter and me. And it is fast....
I was ready to buy a Solo…
I was ready to buy a Solo Plus when the dealer showed me this boat. It's slightly wider than the Solo Plus and thus more stable for paddling tandem. But it's not as wide as most tandems, so quite suitable for paddling solo as well. I've got a Kevlar layup with three web seats. It's a very forgiving boat, great stability and tracking, and only 40 lbs!
All and all a very versatile and enjoyable boat. The only complaint is that the removable yoke uses very tight cotter pins with sharp metal edges. It's nearly impossible to slip the pins all the way in without cutting a finger-- really wished they'd gone the gunwale clamp route rather than use cotter pins.