Thinking of buying a WW canoe - Mountain Buzz

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Old 03-24-2012   #1
Shelby, North Carolina
Paddling Since: 2012
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 59
Thinking of buying a WW canoe

Anyone have any advice on WW canoeing? Just recently got into the WW kayaking and love it! My son is just not up to the task though and is struggling on calm water with it. So in order for me to be able to go and enjoy my kayak I've started looking into a Canoe. My wife and i both are new to kayaking, and i figure we could just swap back and forth. One of us in our kayak while the other paddles a canoe with my son and switch back and forth. I've also looked at the option of a 2 person kayak (both open and closed) but thinking a canoe might be better and more enjoyable since it would be different from the kayaks we already have, plus we would stay drier and my son be happier vs getting wet in like the tandem open kayak LL makes. Thoughts, people with kids that have been where i'm at, your thoughts? Opinions on paddling canoes in class 2/3 WW?

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Old 03-24-2012   #2
Scottsdale, Arizona
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 48
My advice is try before you buy. I made the mistake of buying before trying. I have been a fan of Mohawk canoes because you can buy them outfitted from the factory. I bought a 16' Nova outfitted with a few air bags and it is a great boat. I wanted something I paddle in small creeks or big water and I ended up with a Maxim (made by Mohawk, luckily I bought it used). I consider myself a solid class III in an IK or raft, but this boat is a handful. It has almost no initial stability but they say a lot of secondary stability. I can barely make it down easy class II without swimming. I have learned to roll in my pool but I can only roll maybe 25% of the attempts I try. If I had solid technique this would be a great boat but I don't. I am considering selling it and getting a Blackfly Option. It is a plastic boat instead of royelex so it takes rock abuse a lot better and suppose to have great initial stability (and I will paddle one before I buy it). Just my 2 cents,
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Old 03-24-2012   #3
Austin, Texas
Paddling Since: 1990
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 9
Canoeing with kids

It sounds like you should consider the 14 ft. tandem WW canoes. I have a Dagger Caper with adjustable pedestals that I set up to do exactly want you describe. Me in the stern and one of the two kids (8 or 9) in the bow. I've not done more than class II in it, but I would feel comfortable in pool-drop IIIs. For difficult moves, I take over and can handle that sized boat solo. The adjustable pedestals allow it to be rigged solo and can adjust as weights of the paddlers change. Works well. I've also paddled a Dagger Caption, which is a better boat. I few manufacturers are still making these boats, Mad River, Mohawk, Esquif, etc. Look used and, if you can, try before you buy.
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Old 03-24-2012   #4
Little Chief
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 28
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 3
Other alternative

I'm longtime canoeist and it might be blasphemy but have you thought about the alternative of getting a tandem ducky. Reasons behind this is that paddling a whitewater canoe isn't as easy as it seems and less forgiving for mistakes, and who wants a wet and angry wife on the river. The tandem ducky is much more forgiving, basically it is a floating lounge chair, stable and drier than a kayak, takes up far less space in the garage, and is perfect for taking to the lake too, to just float around in. You give up some performance, but I have found the ladies to enjoy a ducky over a canoe. It's your marriage. Just wanted to add an alternative.
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Old 03-24-2012   #5
Phippsburg, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 27
I'd highly recommend you take a look at a SOAR. I have a the Pro Pioneer with oar saddles and oars. You can also put a transom on the back and a small motor for lakes.

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I've ran everything from the lazy river to Class 4 in it. Pro P has 1500 lbs of capacity.
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Old 03-24-2012   #6
coloradopaddler's Avatar
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 206
A tandem canoe sounds like it would suit you well for what you would like to do. There is a slightly steeper learning curve in my opinion. I would say get a boat that has adjustable saddles or one with a triple saddle, that way you have multiple options for paddling with kids or others. On my profile page is a picture of my five year old daughter and I surfing my caption. There, I am sitting in the center position and she is in the bow paddler's position. The caption is a great whitewater tandem boat. The best one in my opinion. I paddled it on the grand last fall, and it's a lot of fun to go on leisurely floats with too. That said, a ducky or raft would also solve your problem and be much quicker to pick up. Get a canoe though!
You deserve a good paddling!
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Old 03-24-2012   #7
Prescott, Arizona
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 26
Tandem ducky is probably a better choice than a OC-2.
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Old 03-25-2012   #8
Durango, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 31
I'll try to be a little more supportive of your objective:

I'm old school! I've done class III's in an Grumman and a 26 yr old Mohawk. I grew up paddling in that Grumman, and my Dad and I did a father/son trip when I was in middle school. IT had a spot of class IIIs we took with no problem. Ran it a couple times. When my mom came on trips, they just had me sit in the middle. Ran that same stretch again in another grumman about 15 years later, and out here I've hit classII/IIIs in my Mohawk. I've never used flotation, and I've always had another up front.

My parent's Grumman is pretty long, at least 18', my Mohawk is around 16-17'.

I see your from NC, I've paddled most of my life on the east coast. I moved out this way about a year and a half ago and canoeing just isn't as popular. People like their inflatables or kayaks. Not a lot of love for the canoe out here, but I stick to my guns, and I think you should do the same! Find yourself a decent canoe and stick some flotation in there and go have fun, for class II-II it doesn't have to be a WW canoe. When you're about to go through the nasty stuff just drop to your knees and paddle hard!
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Old 03-25-2012   #9
welch, Oklahoma
Paddling Since: 1976
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 207
Hay you are in the land of canoes . The nantahala has has duckys you can rent and see how you like them then you can try to find a 16 "ft blue hole canoe and bag it up . The dagger deminsion is also a for giving boat . Rent before you buy How old is your child ??
Join a padling club and they will guide you down the happy river of paddling . We will be out on the Nattie over Memorial day week end . we will stay at deep creek camp ground and would be happy to float with you and your family . We have canoes and rafts
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Old 03-25-2012   #10
welch, Oklahoma
Paddling Since: 1976
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 207
Three generations of paddlers and the grand kids are 10 and twins 7
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