Used Gear/Fishing Boat for Class I-III
Hi everyone. This is my first post. I'm looking for some guidance, but first some context. I live and play in Arkansas. We do have some challenging rapids, but most of our rivers are class III or less and that's the kind of water I frequent. My goal is to find a raft for less than a grand (bucket boat's fine) that will accomodate two guys and enough gear for a 2-3 day trip. One we can fish out of would be a bonus. Since I'm so far away from the rafting community I have to rely on sellers who can take plastic over the phone and ship me the raft. I've run across a few in the $400-$600 range and I'd love to hear your thoughts.
1) Ten year old 12' Starlite bucket raft for $600 at an outfitter in Lehigh, PA. I spoke to someone at Star and he vouched for the outfitter and the rafts he's selling. All work has been done by a manufacturer's rep. 2) 14' Avon bucket raft I found on NRS gear swap for $400. I know nothing about the age, use or condition as I haven't heard back from the seller. I also don't know whether he could accomodate my payment and shipping needs. 3) 14' Odyssey bucket raft ten+ years old from an outfitter in Utah for $400. I know nothing about this one. He's supposed to be sending me pics.
Here's the deal. I'm looking to get into rafting, so I know I'll be making mistakes, and I'm not going to be making any gnarly runs. I'm just looking for something I can use with a frame four or five times a year that will accomodate my buddy and me and all our crap and not leave us swimming. In other words, I'm realistic about what I can expect to find in my price range. I'll pay up for a better boat after I've taken my lumps. So, within that context please tell me what you think. Many thanks.