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Old 02-10-2014   #1
Enfield, New Hampshire
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 332
diff bet the alpaca rafts and the regular duckies like the Lynx??

Excuse me if this should be in another forum ie rafting but since its a double bladed paddle craft question I am putting it here.

So what is the difference bet these 2 crafts? From pics and vids that I have seen, they both seem popular on low flow, moderate gradient water. I realise the P rafts may be lighter to carry in somewhere remote, but are there any performance characteristics on the water of one over the other?
Thanks for your insight into this.

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Old 02-10-2014   #2
don't bogart that
rpludwig's Avatar
Frosted Flakes N of Baytuckey, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 180
I'll take a shot at showing my ingorance

Owning a few duckies and only seeing the pack rafts at the pool rolling here goes. Duckies are self bailing and made of hypalon or PVC and reflect the weight of materials used. Pack rafts are ultra light and have one chamber and a fancy bag that blows them up. Both have a purpose, as you are not going to pack up a paddlac or a tomcat/lynx and do a twenty mile hike, comfortably, on the other hand grab a pack raft, tuck it in with your pack and go fish the highest mtn lakes or get a little river action, or a lot, your choice.

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Old 02-11-2014   #3
2kanzam's Avatar
Charleston, West Virginny
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 461
^^ pretty much nailed it but I might expound a little.

I own self bailing roundboats, bucket boats and duckies but have been looking at a packraft to extend my boating quiver.

An alpacka or other packrafts are preferred really only when a super lightweight and small packing boat is an advantage. That smallness/lightness means that pretty much every other aspect of a boat or paddling will be compromised.

Duckies typically have much higher carrying capacity, are tougher, better tracking, better performance in whitewater, faster in flatwater, self bailing, safer (i.e. more tubes) and generally more comfortable.

Packrafts are a highly specialized tool for getting a boat into hard to reach places. I want a packraft to pack onto my daybag for when I'm fishing remote places. I would use it when I want to cross a stream that is too deep to wade or to expedite my exit off the mountain (by boating down the stream)

If you want to just paddle, run whitewater or camp a ducky is much more versatile.
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Old 02-11-2014   #4
slickhorn's Avatar
Seattle, Washington
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 365
pretty well covered. I've rowed all my life, and paddled for about 10 years now in inflatables. current quiver is a sotar legnd, a lynx, a sotar ik, and an alpacka.

love 'em all. the packraft is a really fun option. If I am on some bouncy II-III and a little bored, the packraft spices things right up. I'm still working on getting to a comfortable IV skill level before I try to expedition in it. I can't wait to hike up Big creek on my next MF trip. Heck, the packraft serves as a great spare boat if you're doing something really silly.

the packraft needs some bow weight. trim is incredibly important. I've been impressed with the build quality, durability, and overall performance of mine.

I bought for things like chetco, lost river, escalante style hike-in or -out access.

But I'm finding I really enjoy running it for fun too. Perhaps at some point I'll decide that's too much abuse, but no harm so far.

still, unless you backpack the boat, it's particular performance/cost point may not make sense.
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