Raft size for two - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 01-20-2014   #1
 
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 5
Raft size for two

Hi everyone,

A whitewater kayaker looking to also start rafting. I have never paddled/owned a raft before and could use some advice.

95% of the time it will be just the girlfriend and I rafting Class I and II and bringing gear to camp.

5% of the time will have a couple extra friends.

Is it even possible to paddle and steer a raft with just two people without oars? If so which size do you think would be best? 9, 13, 14 foot?

Maybe someday I would get into the frame and oar setup, but like to just keep as a paddle raft for now.

Thanks a ton for you advice.

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Old 01-20-2014   #2
 
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,812
go to the aire home page and check out the super puma

great paddle raft, my bud has one with frame and oars and does middle fork salmon type runs with him, wife and all the comforts of home loaded on as well

hard to find used. Several rafting buds with big rafts have super pumas as well and actually get a lot more use out of the super pumas. Pumas and super duper pumas are out there as well but for all around use the super puma model seems to be the best option.
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Old 01-20-2014   #3
Dipshit with the most.
 
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Bellevue, Idaho
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,832
Love the Super P. Fine for two, three for sure. Four? I would think that you might start getting a bit crowded. As a kayaker you are probably used to going a bit light on the camping end so it might be just fine.

Welcome to the dark side.
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Old 01-20-2014   #4
 
River City, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Jan 2013
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R2ing on a 14er can be done, but it's kind of a pain. I'd go smaller if just you and the lady 95% of the time. 12' ish would be about right if you are talking about just 2 paddlers, but still want to occasionally take camping gear, friends, or eventually add a rowing frame.

For padding with 2 you'll probably want a smaller boat. If you end up adding a frame and rowing you'll probably eventually prefer something bigger.
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Old 01-20-2014   #5
 
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Tigard, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1995
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Posts: 784
Quote:
Originally Posted by OregonRafter View Post
R2ing on a 14er can be done, but it's kind of a pain. I'd go smaller if just you and the lady 95% of the time. 12' ish would be about right if you are talking about just 2 paddlers, but still want to occasionally take camping gear, friends, or eventually add a rowing frame.

For padding with 2 you'll probably want a smaller boat. If you end up adding a frame and rowing you'll probably eventually prefer something bigger.
See I was going to say just the opposite, I was pleasantly surprised at how nicely my 14ft handled setup as an R2. My prior boats was a 12-1/2ft. I was a wonderful R2 boat as ell, but got surfed around quite a bit more. I think the 14ft has more weight and being wider got it through holes smoother.

Either way I see 12ft to 14ft as being the sweet spot for paddle raft vs short trip oar rig. You can always spend a season renting a varitety of sizes to see what works best.
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Old 01-20-2014   #6
 
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,812
Add on comment:

I am a long time kayaker and got into rafting years ago.

my introduction to the super puma was one spring on the ARK in CO. I had some rowing experience by then. I was with a group that had extra Super Pumas along.

Talked into rowing a super puma with two really good paddlers in the front and a passenger in the stern. First day we ran Browns, second The numbers down to BV and last day Royal Gorge. Not knowing any better we took all the kayak lines and they worked just fine. One of my most fun days on the ARK ever. We were laughing all the time I was astounded at how the Super P worked. I would set up angles / lines with the oars, call out strokes as needed sometimes ship the oars in tight spots. For me it was like having an afterburner as instant power from the two lady paddlers both of them with a lot of skill and power to get it done!

My point here is since you are a kayaker, I bet the super puma is going to be a hoot for you. The benefit is you can share the fun with your girl friend or others.
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Old 01-20-2014   #7
 
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 5
You guy's are awesome on the advice...can't wait for this summer!
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Old 01-20-2014   #8
 
denver, Colorado
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 141
Do you think it might be benificial to at least consider is super stripped down rowing frame? You wouldn't need much and if you purchased a used raft, you could use the funds saved.
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Old 01-20-2014   #9
 
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 5
I thought about the rowing frame, but had the feeling the rafts with the frames mostly needed trailers to transport. So if possible hoping to skip the trailer for the first year.
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Old 01-20-2014   #10
 
denver, Colorado
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 141
Quote:
Originally Posted by raft098adu View Post
I thought about the rowing frame, but had the feeling the rafts with the frames mostly needed trailers to transport. So if possible hoping to skip the trailer for the first year.

A simple 3 bay frame will break down and fit in a subaru.
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