Most Recent Reviews
A surprisingly versatile, little boat. I was looking for a canoe to paddle on local boney rivers after my favourite composite boat somehow found a rock in an easy C1, and mangled the gel-coat. I still have Royelex boats, one of which is an Esquif, from my white water days, but I normally solo, so at 72, find them a little heavy to throw up onto my shoulders. I looked for a Mohawk or Swift or Dagger solo, but with COVID everything was scarce or way overpriced. Then I saw these - there is a good short video on it from a marina in Pennsylvania - and at $1200 CDN it was more affordable than a lot of the used, beat-up stuff, advertised.
What a fun wee boat it turned out to be. Great in the wind. great bouncing of boulders, and great to carry. Plus it has enough gear room for a 4 day trip. I am a kneeler, so I raised the seat to accommodate my size 10 boots, and had a partial spray deck made for a drier run through bigger standing waves. Also a great teaching boat for anyone interested in trying solo canoeing. An all around well made, great addition to any fleet.
I have been paddling rivers and flat water since the 60's, and have owned many different canoe brands and hull types since that time. My first really good boat was bought in the 80's - a 16 foot kevlar Nova Craft which was an amazing lake tripping/portaging boat, and after the weight of the fibreglass units, was a delightful change. For white water we have had several royalex hulls of different designs, both tandem and solo, for the various applications that we paddled. Because I am old, I was finding the my 80 pound Legend 15, which I normally paddle solo, a little to heavy to swing up and portage with, so shopped for something else. After a lot of footwork, and questions, and demo paddles, I ended up back with the nice folks at Nova Craft, and bought a Prospector 15, in the blue steel lay-up. What an amazing boat - quick and nibble on rivers, straight tracking and easy to paddle when loaded on lakes - and I can carry it anywhere like a purse. A bit of a wind catcher on big open water, as most prospectors are, but with proper gear and paddler placement that is easily rectified. Fortunately I have avoided any river pins or major rock collisions thus far, so not sure how the lay-up would match the flexibility of Royalex. The gel coat does scratch up fairly easily, but generally takes the bump and grind of river travel quite well. I do not normally offer reviews on products, but with the fit and finish of this boat, and the absolute joy of paddling it, I think it is a worthy exception. The staff at Nova Craft in London Ontario were most patient and helpful in making sure I was getting a product that really suited my needs. I still own other canoes, but this is my first choice off the rack, whether soloing or paddling tandem, river or lake. Such a great fun boat, and pretty too. Highly recommended.