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I am in process of buying a new raft and I am totally torn on what to get. For the most part, I have narrowed my search to NRS, Sotar, and Maravia, but I am of course open to other suggestions.

A bit of background
-Looking for a 14 ft. primarily for extended trips including the GC
-Money is not really an issue
-Will be able to store inflated/climate controlled

More than anything, I never want to buy another raft. . . ever.

Any thoughts/comments/suggestions would be appreciated.
 

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Solo or maybe one passenger = 14 footer

1-2 passengers on a regular basis/GC trips = 16 footer

I have owned Hyside, Maravia, and currently own a Sotar. No issues with any of them. The Hyside was a 12 footer that I wish I still had. I've owned 2 Maravia Cats that were the bomb. Got the Sotar 14SL when I made the switch from cats to rafts. I went with the Sotar because it was lighter in weight overall and I'm a female who loads & unloads my raft on my trailer by myself. Also the dimensions of the Sotar 14SL worked perfectly to convert my old cat frame for the raft. My rafting partner of over 12 years runs all Maravia....a Willy 1.5, a Willy 2, and two cats. He loves them.

You are looking at great brands. Pick one that fits the size and design you favor. You can't go wrong with any of them. If you do want to stick with a 14 footer, then I'd suggest you look at a diminishing tube design to up your bow & stern cargo space a little. The trade off is a wetter ride for your passengers.....but heck, that's half the fun!
 

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I am in process of buying a new raft and I am totally torn on what to get. For the most part, I have narrowed my search to NRS, Sotar, and Maravia, but I am of course open to other suggestions.

A bit of background
-Looking for a 14 ft. primarily for extended trips including the GC
-Money is not really an issue
-Will be able to store inflated/climate controlled

More than anything, I never want to buy another raft. . . ever.

Any thoughts/comments/suggestions would be appreciated.
If money is not an issue, you can store it inflated, and you want it to last forever, get the Maravia with a urethane coated bottom.

A diminished tube design will allow you to carry A LOT more gear. Maravia's got a great new boat with diminished tubes called the Willy Willy. It's 14' long and wider than the 14' Diablo. I run a Diablo 14', a Spider 13', and a Typhoon 16'. My Diablo is 16 years old and people still ask me if it's new.

The other brands you are looking at are all good brands. They just aren't as durable as the Maravia. They have other advantages like lighter, easier to roll, less expensive, etc.
 

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I'd say go 16 footer then. If you really want this to be your one and only family raft that can serve you well as your daughter grows, and you can take down the GC, then a 14 footer will get small at some point.
 

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Hyside is not on your list, but if I had to choose one boat for all of the things you mention, it would be my 14' Hyside Outfitter Pro. 14', thicker Hypalon, big tubes, rows nice. The basic design had not changed much for 30 years, and I know this from the number of 20 plus year old boats I encounter on the river.
I have other boats in other sizes, but if I had to choose one...
 

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Why not look at Jacks plastic welding? you can have a custom raft designed at 15'. not too big not too small. diminished tubes, whatever width, color, etc... made in USA (and NM) by a stand up guy.

I have to always throw this out there butcause most people do not know that they make rafts too.

my only affiliation is as a satisfied customer.

Royal
 

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I am going to jump in and also say Maravia for a life long raft keeping in mind I do sell all 3 you are looking at. We also offer 10% off all your accessories for 90 days from your purchase so that helps with all of the outfitting. Give me a call if you would like to talk about all 3 rafts and their differences, all of which are great river rides. I can work you up a quote for the package. It's going to be a stellar season!

Keep it Right Side Up,

Renee Zettle
General Sales Manager
Maravia / Cascade River Gear
800-223-7238
 

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I would call Renee! Buy what you want and get the warranty! They know how to fit your needs and set you up right the first time. I went though used boats with used gear and never really was set up the way I wanted with the right boats caused I bought used. Now I have a new boat with new gear and will never look back! Good luck!

Sent from my SM-G955U using Mountain Buzz mobile app
 

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Just sold a 1993 model Hyside to a guy who will get a few more years out of it. Bought a 14ft XT Hyside, I will probably retire before it does, and I'm in my 30s.
 

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I've had my 14' SOTAR for 15 years and am very happy. I've been using it on all the western canyon rivers full of sand and silt and see very little significant wear.

I've taken 6 passengers on day trips comfortably and have paddled it a few times with 8. I don't like more than 2 for multi-days. It has plenty of cargo room for bigger trips. It's been down the Grand twice but the next time I will borrow or rent a bigger boat.

Would I buy a SOTAR again? You bet but there are a lot of choices to pick from.
 
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