Big / Med / Low Water Boat? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 08-30-2009   #1
 
Park City, Utah
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 229
Big / Med / Low Water Boat?

I am wanting to get a new kayak that will really only be used for river running. I already got a playboat, not wanting to get into creeking yet. Been looking at Superheroes, Karnali L , Diesels 80 and Remix 79. Would these style of boats be good for running all cases of water? As an example running Royal Gorge at 3500, 2000 and 400 CFS? Or would it best to get something a little older and less expensive for the high end of water, and use my playboat for the rest.

I have always had boats with sharp edges. Of the boats mentioned above, I believe the Diesel to be the most like that. Is it going to be hard for me to adjust to having less pronouned edges? If I don't have intentions of creeking with this boat, is it a big deal to have a decent amount of edge.

One last question. I have been thinking that the bigger styles of each boat is best for me. 6'3" 200 lbs. For an example I sat in both a Karnali M and L (at a showroom), and the M felt just as good. Would a little shorter (1 inche), a little lower volume (6 gallons) and not as wide (0.7 inches) be better for lower volume? For the Karnali, the recommended weight still goes up to 242.

Obrigado - BS

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Old 08-30-2009   #2
 
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,734
I have a super hero and at 205 lbs, am having a good time with this boat.

It is stable and get it on edge and it carves into or out of a eddy like it is on rails.

Super comfort outfitting that is about as simple as it gets.

Demo if you can and get the Super Hero out on a class 3 run with lots of eddy hopping if you can.
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Old 08-30-2009   #3
 
Park City, Utah
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 229
Quote:
Originally Posted by okieboater View Post
I have a super hero and at 205 lbs, am having a good time with this boat.

It is stable and get it on edge and it carves into or out of a eddy like it is on rails.

Super comfort outfitting that is about as simple as it gets.

Demo if you can and get the Super Hero out on a class 3 run with lots of eddy hopping if you can.

Okie,
Have you used the SH when it gets boney? That is my fear, but I guess the SH would be the best out of all of those as it is quite a bit shorter.
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Old 08-30-2009   #4
 
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Boulder, Colorado
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For running what you describe, I think you should be looking at big comfortable play boats.

I love my super hero, but if I wasn't planning to run harder white water, I prefer being in a 4 or super fun. I'm by no means an accomplished play boater, but even a simple front surf is compromised in any of the bigger river runners I've tried. If you have a decent roll, a river running play boat is all you need in the gorge, no matter how high it gets.

I love edges. Rounded bottom boats are on their way out.
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Old 08-30-2009   #5
 
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
Okie,
Have you used the SH when it gets boney? That is my fear, but I guess the SH would be the best out of all of those as it is quite a bit shorter.

I have a mega rocker for the thin, boney, hard boof moves type of runs. And, it has been a great performer for me in thin water. The mega boofs on autopilot and can bounce thru low water gnarly holes about as good as any boat I have ever had. That big bow and rounded bottom has saved me from a lot of embarassment as in a pin situation water just flows under the boat and lifts it up. Just a touch of lean into the rock and you get elevated up and bounce around and off the rock. For me the Mega Rocker is about as forgiving a boat I have found in low water runs. Since the Mega Rocker is made to turn it takes a bit more work to paddle the flats and due to it wanting to plow thru the holes, it is a bit harder to get front and rear surfs. It does spin like a top tho on a decent surf wave. I would not want to get sideways in a big reversal in my Mega and avoid those spots or else power straight thru them. For general play all river running and surfing, the Super Hero is much better than the Mega Rocker - my opinion tho.

I have never taken the Super Hero on extremely low flows so I am only guessing. But, like you mentioned, the Super Hero's semi flat bottom looks to me that it could be a problem on boney runs. Having said that, on runs where I have had low but decent water to float the boat on, the Super Hero is just about as good as it gets carving turns and is fast becoming my favorite all around boat. My guess is the Super Hero would do OK in low water runs but not nearly as good as the Mega Rocker does with all that rounded bottom and bow.

Since I do not creek as much as I used to, if I could only have one of the two designs, it would be the Super Hero. Mainly because of the fun surfing you get and it is a decent creeker as well as down river runner. A plus for me is on the Hero you get all the benefits of the Fun hull plus the comfort of all that foot room. If you are like me, mostly a old school type surf and none of the aerial stuff, the Hero is about as good as it gets surfing.

I really like the outfitting with the metal bulk heads offering a lot of safety in my opinion.

EJ has the rope system much better than it was on the original models. There is still some slippage but it is easy to re-adjust from inside the boat. That minor bit of slippage is the only drawback but is way outweighted by the ease of adjustment.

I have no connection to Jackson boats having paid full price for the two I have. Both the Jackson boats have been really good to me and I can recommend both. I like the plastic Jackson uses. There is a lot of really good boats out there these days and it is mostly a matter of getting the best deal you can. Diesels, Remix, Axiom, Jefe, Karnali, Burn are all good boats. Hard to go wrong with any of them.
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