Read reviews for the Pelican 15.5 by Pelican International 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!
Basically it perms average to good in everything apart from straight line speed. The new one I have is a win windriver. The quality of gunwales, seats and fittings seems much better than the older models - although the the design is the same.
Time will tell if I have any issues of seat cracking but it looks unlikely. The plastic is quite thick and the seats rest on the floor. Unlike some earlier models it is now easy to paddle kneeling and perched on the seat (you can put your feet under the seats as there is just a central seat support). The seats are a good height and the range of positions you can choose is good for different conditions and moving about on longer trips.
The hull hardly flexes at all compared to other boats I tried and the metal poles in the recessed keel grove adds strength and means small water in the boat does not get you wet. I would say as a compromise boat it is great. Go longer for major touring or shorter for maneuverability (single handed).
One boat for a range of uses though and I give it 10 out of 10.
When I got the Pelican my daughter was a teen, living at home and I had a 75 pound Chocolate Lab who went with me everywhere. My daughter is now 23 and in the Coast Guard, she plays with slightly larger boats, and my dog died Christmas Eve so it is just me.
This is a bit of a big boat for one person. I cannot haul it in the bed of my truck and it is a challenge to get it over the roof of my truck and secured by myself so I am getting a kayak. That said, I am keeping the Pelican, for when family visit or my daughter is home, because it is an excellent canoe for what it is intended.
It tracks well, is easy to paddle, hauls a good payload, is stable and will take a beating from a load of teenagers. My one problem is the same as everyone else, the seats. I am a disabled vet with metal pins in my leg, I have gained a bit of weight... I'm fat, 'nuff said. These seats did not cut it. The thin strip of plastic, between the mounting strip and the seat, tore completely off on the rear seat, dumping me, rather unceremoniously, on my butt while taking a trip down the James River. The middle seat is headed that way.
I have found that stainless steel corner brackets, the long ones, some self tapping screws a few nuts and bolts (with silicon seal) and a little work with a drill can make the broken seats quite solid again. I also painted my brackets and screw/bolt heads to match the seats/canoe hull.
The one caution I will give, as to the use of this boat is this, it is wide enough that you need to be careful in your load plan. I often use the canoe as a "base boat" for a group of friends with kayaks and smaller canoes. We put a good sized cooler, bait, maybe a couple of tackle boxes, lunches, and assorted other stuff into the 15.5 footer. If I am not careful in the loading, I will wind up tipped to one side or the other and the thing will track in a circle. I also had to watch my dog for the same reason. 75 pounds of Lab, switching from starboard to port, can really mess up the balance of the canoe.
Having said that, The Pelican handles anything we have thrown at it including being way overloaded.
I like it.
I have been very pleased with it and had a lot of fun adding on to it and fishing from it. I made a transom and added a minnkota c2 trolling motor, a hummingbird depth finder and other small add ons. As for the Pelican 15.5 canoe itself, it's Ram-X like Coleman and, other than the seats, I see no problems. The seats however on the sides have a tab that folds up and bolts to the canoe. between the seat and tab is just a thin strip of plastic. what makes this bad is they don't secure the pedestal to the floor and it can move just enough to cause a tear in the thin plastic. in 3 mo. my seat was torn completely lose and I'm avg. build at 6', 185. I've ordered a new seat under warranty and added small 1 1/2 in. L's from the pedestal to the floor. there is a tube in the bottom so i didn't put a hole in the bottom.
Other than that, for the money I love the boat.
It's stable, I can paddle freely, fish and even bring my wife and 2 year son on it. I put Gander Mt seats with backs over the molded seats, it carries a good amount of gear and is maneuverable. I recommend it for anyone with a family or anyone who is using it for lakes and calmer rivers.