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Name: ardy

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I sold my prowler to a friend a few years ago. It just wasn't for me. I'm more of a round bottom kind of guy. But I will have to say that everyone I paddle with that has one really likes it,and doesn't even want to try anything else. The Prowler has good initial and secondary stability. They ride amazingly dry. I've gone through a big water class 3 rapid first in my Appalachian, paddled solo and taken on a lot of water. Pulled into an eddy to bail out my canoe while waiting for my friends to come down through the same rapid in their Prowler paddled tandem. I figured that they would take on even more water than me. They were laughing and having a good time as the front half of their boat was going airborn off the crest of 3 foot curling waves. They got to the bottom, pulled up next to me, and had hardly taken on a drop!! I guess it's the flat bottom that rides up and over the waves pretty well, along with the recurved bow and stern working to shed water. I have also found that it is a very good boat to put a novice in to shepherd down a river. They feel very stable and secure and I have seen inexperenced paddlers run class 1&2 rapids, and the boat made them look like they knew what they were doing. I've rarely seen a Prowler flip, and when I have was usually when the paddler was really asking for it. Blue Hole was one of the early pioneers of Royalex canoes, and the Prowler was one of their original designs, so you could say it's past the test of time. Blue Hole sold out a couple years ago to a company based in Ontario named Evergreen Canoe company who still makes the Prowler. I'm giving it an 8 because like I said it's just not my type of canoe but I've got several friends that I'm sure would give it a 10. As a novice canoe 10 also.

I've had my Appalachian about 10 years and have put a couple thousand canoe tripping miles on it and many, many day trips. I can't say enough good things about this boat. It's tough as nails, rides high and dry even loaded with 2 weeks of gear, but mostly it's just a joy to paddle. Most of my river tripping miles I've paddled solo on class II,III technical rivers, and thats where this boat really excells. It surfs, side surfs, back ferrys, back eddys, side slips, it does it all with ease. Now as far as tracking? that's more up to the paddler, also it's not the fastest boat especially in a head- wind, but for getting a load of gear down river in style it's hard to beat. Also alot of fun paddled tandam, even if your bow paddler is inexperienced this boat makes it doable. I've owned probably 20 canoes in the last 20 years and this is a favorite. No way could I give it anything less than a 10, for what I use it for. Thanks Old Town !!!

I bought my Cascade new about 10 years ago and this is a very,very fun boat to paddle solo or tandem. I live in the hilly part of Virginia and paddle lots of local class I,II&III technical rivers and streams and it seams that's what this boat was designed for. Not a play boat, but alot of fun. Not a beginer boat, but a great teacher. I've even paddled mine on a section of the Swift in New Hampshire with a gradient of 100 ft per mile at high water because it was the only boat I had with me at the time. My arms felt like they were about to fall off by the end of the run, but I was very impressed by the Cascade's abilities. Not really a tripping boat but has served me well on a few weekend camping trips paddled solo. Too bad Old Town's not making it anymore. If you can find one used, buy it. Also stay off the lakes on windy days.

I'm an experienced paddler with a number of canoes. I bought a Penobscot 16' a few years ago because I wanted a boat that would track better than my Old Town Appalachian and run rapids better than my Wenonah Jensen 17. The Penobscot fit that pretty well. Seemed like a good boat for some of the northern trips I like to do. Reasonably fast on the lakes, reasonably light on the portages, sufficient volume for tripping solo or tandem. Still able to run some rapids while fully loaded. A couple years ago a friend of mine and I were paddling tandem on a 10 day trip on the Petawawa River in Ontario.We were skipping most of the portage trails and running or lineing the rapids.This is what I usually do and even if it's not faster, it's usually more interesting than doing the portages. Well this one rapid inperticular we found very interesting. It was the one that had my Penobscot and all our gear wrapped around a rock right in the middle of the main stream. We had been lining the canoe through this nasty looking, rock studed class III kind of drop, and just when the boat was passing through the main slot the fairly sharp stern stem cought the current wrong, broadsided the curling wave at the bottom of the drop. The upstream gunwale dipped below the surface, filled catching the full current, and in about half a second was compleatly wrapped around a rock. I had to hike up river a ways to find a safe place to swim across. Then was able to approach one end of the canoe from river left, and retrieve a 60 foot piece of rope that I keep for just such a thing, but had never needed for this purpose before. Luckly I was able to position myself in a place where I could tie one end of the rope to the center yoke,pass the other end under the boat, bring it up and over the top and toss it to my paddling partner who was still upstream on river right. After tying the rope to a rock the best he could he pulled on that rope while I pulled on the stern line. Well as unconfortable as the Penobscot looked in that position,it didn't want to budge. We were pretty much in the middle of our 10 day trip with no one around to help and no other canoe, so we didn't have much choise, we had to get this canoe off the rock. So on about the third or forth try the Penobscot started to budge, and then we couldn't stop, we gave it every ounce of strength we had left and she rolled up and came swinging off the rock and to shore on the end of the rope. OK...we had our boat back now but it was mangled. The aluminum gunwale broken in three places. It was obvious we weren't going anywhere soon, but atleast no one was hurt and we didn't loose anything but a water bottle. We went ahead and set up camp for the night right where we were. We were able to stomp the hull while pulling up on the gunwales until it started resembling a canoe again, although still badly twisted. Next we turned it on its side and lashed the stern thwart to a tree, the bow rested against a second tree. Then using a couple carabiners we set up a z-drag pully system tied to the yoke and a third tree perpendicular to the canoe. By pulling this rope we were able to straighten out the twist. The bow seat had ripped out and was hanging by just one bolt and the gunwale still broken in three places. We cut saplings to splint the gunwales. By drilling holes through the royalex just below the gunwales with my leatherman we were able to lash the saplings in place. With enough cordage and a few more holes drilled in the right places we were able to rig a servicable bow seat. The next morning we started off again. I thought we'd be paddling in circles the rest of the trip, but the Penobscot did good. We even found our lost water bottle. It looked like it had been through a war or something and put back together by savages but it paddled just fine. I've been meaning to replace the gunwales with vinyl ones and install a new seat too but I just keep paddling it like it is . Not too bad and its a good reminder of the power of moving water. I never pass a portage trail anymore without thinking about that experience. But back to the review. The Penobscot does alot of things, but nothing real well. That's why I'd only give it a 7 or an 8. I guess I should give it an 8 after all it's been through, poor thing !

Words of the Prophet : "Straighten it up ! Straighten it up!" and "Watch out ahead!"

Dagger's cult following can count me as one of its disciples. The devine teachings of it's Prophet in the high art of steep creeking has led me to "rapid" enlightenment. At the time of this writing it's been 10 years since I found the Prophet in the little village of Farmville VA, on the banks of the mighty Appomattox. By my Prophet's guidance and a good J stroke I've never been led astray. Though your path may waver your faith must not.

Most people either love or hate the Prophet, but isn't that the way it always is ? I'm surprised there aren't more reviews on it, but Dagger only made it for a few years. It has some pretty radical lines. I don't remember the specs exactly but it's got a ridiculus amount of rocker. Something like 9" fore and 8" aft. It has a flat bottom that rounds toward the bow and has harder chines in the stern.

It's got a very lively feel and high sides. I've got mine outfitted with a Perception dry storage saddle, knee pads and toe blocks. Rocking your weight foward or back has much different effects. I'm used to boats with a lot of rocker. A good teacher is a strict teacher. The loving discipline of the Prophet will help you to straighten your crooked ways.

I live in the mountainous part of Virginia. When my local river has enough water in it, it's coming out of the mountains at a rip roaring speed. A gradient of over 80 feet per mile for the first couple miles then flattens out to about 50 feet per mile for the next 5 miles. The upper part is continous class 2,3 the lower has more space between the rapids. The Prophet loves this kind of stuff. Tight, twisty, rock studded. In my opinion this type of river is more suited to an open boat than to a kayak (there are other beliefs on that one I'm sure)because of the shallow water in the rapids and for the need to jump out of your boat often with only a few seconds notice to avoid a tree across the river or a barbed wire fence (don't you just love that? ).

I've had the Prophet on some bigger water too, like the James or the New River gorge W.V. It can hang in there but that's just not it's thing. Turning white water to wine must be because it's highly intoxicating.

So what it really comes down to was summed up by that old paddler who once said "different strokes for different folks". Either you like it or you don't; and beware the delusion of bliss. Thats all I have to say.

I've been paddling for a good many years in many different canoes. I've had as many as eleven canoes at one time including Old Town's Appalachian, Cascade & Penobscot. Also Blue Hole's Prowler, Mad River's Explorer and a few others in the same catagory as the Wenonah Prospector 16. I do alot of wilderness tripping for extended amounts of time. The Appalachian has usually been my boat of choise for the type of rivers I like to paddle (twisty-turny class II,III). This summer I purchased the Wanonah Prospector 16 in Royalex. Wow !! I really love this boat. There's something about it that just seems smarter than my other boats. It has been alot of fun on local class II,III streams paddled solo with minimal gear. I moved the seats nine inches toward the center of the canoe and raised them one and a half inches. This seems just right to me. Like I have said I think this is a great boat and am looking foward to using it on an extended trip this winter on the Rio Grande Lower Canyons. My only complaint is that the Royalex seems a little thin to me compaired to my older Royalex boats, but it is lighter than the Appalachian. Tends to oil can in big choppy stuff, but adjusting the angle can help,also being loaded with gear would probably help too. I would love to give it a 10 but would have to say 9 because of the thiner material. In the last few months it's been the only boat I want to paddle. I would like to try Wenonah's 15 & 17 foot versions of the prospector.

I'm 13 yrs old & have been paddling for about 8 yrs. I've paddled this boat on local Rivers & streams, Shanandoa, Robinson,Rappahannock. I've also paddled solo on a 120 mile,10 day, trip on the Rio Grande(Boquillas canyon & down through the "Lower Canyons")some days we had strong head winds & alot of technical maneavering. But handled well under the curcumstances. Light gear in the front helped it track better. For my size (115 lbs), I think this a very good boat. My Father added a bow seat & I think it makes a pretty good tandem boat too.