your paddlesports destination

Profile

Name: davbart

Most Recent Reviews

I purchased a used Magic, and left the next day on a trip in the BWCA. I did the trip with about 275-280 lbs between paddler and gear. My trip included no large lakes, so despite dealing with winds in excess of 20 mph, I didn't have to deal with any large waves. The boat tracks excellently which allowed for good speed and an ability to move upwind without constant correction. I also like that you can paddle with a slight correction stroke while maintaining decent speed.

One of the bigger surprises for me was the maneuverability of the canoe. A slight lean allows a quick turn not enough for whitewater (not enough freeboard anyway), but much better than a Wenonah Voyager or GRB Classic XL.

Overall, a great, solo flatwater touring canoe.

First, I am 6'2" and weigh 225 lbs which is important information when considering such a product. The cot is easy to set up and take down. After a couple of times I could put it together in less than a minute. It packs up smaller than my sleeping pad and weighs a little over two pounds.

The comfort is fantastic, and keeps me off the ground even though it is only a few inches tall. No pressure points to deal with like a sleeping pad which is something I'll never use again.

The only drawback is that it takes a little stretching to get it in the door of my small two man Kelty tent that I use solo. It is expensive, but I've never slept so well while canoe camping (used it on a recent week long trip).
Money well spent.

Beautiful workmanship and high quality paddle. I recently took a 110-mile river trip that included tight, twisty upper portions to open areas with high winds. The paddle gave me the power to handle these conditions while solo paddling a loaded 16' tandem canoe. The only thing I'll do differently when I buy another is have the oil finish instead of varnished which I think will be easier on my hands.

I'm 6'2" 230 lbs and this board is very stable and allows me to carry a little gear for day trips. Not a burner, but it does have decent glide. My wife who is much smaller also enjoys paddling it.

I do have a major complaint with the layup. The board has two dings that penetrate into the core. One came from tying the board down, the other from my daughter falling while paddling.

I thought the board was a great deal because of the good paddling characteristics, but the fragility completely negates that idea. I guess you get what you pay for.

Pros
Stable,
Carry a decent load,
Good glide

Cons
IMO, outweighing any Pro, it is too fragile
Usage
Exercise, touring

An update on my previous review after a couple of years and a lot of miles, including a recent 215 mile trip from Raleigh, NC to Beaufort, NC. The trip was primarily on the Neuse River and included Class 1+ Rapids and open water. I used both single and double blade paddles.

I am thoroughly impressed with this boat's characteristics and capabilities. It is fast and seaworthy and responds well to both single and double blades.

On my recent trip I was paddling with mostly kayakers and I arrived at each break spot and camp every evening long before they did. It is easy to maintain 4.5 MPH in this boat all day long with a single blade. With a double blade into headwinds of 15 MPH I could maintain about 4.8 MPH with a day long effort. I had to regularly wait for the kayakers on open water.

During the trip we had an open water crossing of about a mile in 20-25 MPH steady winds with gusts over 30, and 2 to 3 ft confused seas primarily perpendicular to the crossing. I made it successfully across with the double blade paddle, and never really felt like I was going to lose it. Yes, I had to throw a few braces, but so did the sea kayakers. Matter of fact, one of the experienced sea kayakers described the conditions as qualifying for rough water according to the BCU standards, and three paddlers didn't make the crossing.

The XL is truly a 10.

I've owned my royalex Penobscot 16 for about 10 years, and I've never seen a more versatile canoe. I've paddled it solo and tandem in everything from flatwater to class 2 rapids. It isn't going to be mistaken for a racing boat, but it has fine entry and for a recreational, royalex boat it has decent speed. It won't perform with a dedicated river runner in the whitewater, it can be a little wet. However, with some backpaddling, and care in the wave trains it performs admirably.

Like I said, a versatile boat, maybe not the best at any one thing, but capable. If I only owned one canoe (heaven forbid), this would be the one.

I'm still learning this boat, and when I get a chance to really spend some time in the boat, I'll post a more detailed review.
Paddler - Even though I've paddled canoes all my life, I'm still learning about canoes of this type. This boat is definitely not a Grumman or an Old Town. I'm 6'2" and weigh 235 lbs.
Construction - the construction quality is fantastic. I can't find a single flaw in the layup and the weight is right on what is advertised.
Stability - I'd say the initial stability is a little less than my Wenonah Voyager, but the secondary stability seems higher. Although, I've never had the Voyager loaded for tripping like intended.
Maneuverability - leaning this boat and utilizing the secondary stability makes this boat very maneuverable. I often paddle tight, twisting streams and don't hesitate to use this boat.
Speed - this hull is fast, faster for me than the Voyager. I've only competed in a one race, so I'm still learning to paddle fast, but the glide and efficiency of this boat is better than anything I've ever paddled.
Why a 9 out of 10? No boat is perfect, right?