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Yeah, rigging the 18' quad cat was a chore, maybe four hours to inflate, strap on the frame, hang the lower decks, and then strap in all the gear. I tried sooo hard not to be a ramp hog! In big hydraulics on extended trips it was far superior to my Otter. On 'normal' rivers like Yampa, Salt, Middle Fork, Dolores, etc. the Otter is a better boat. But I'd still like to run the big cat again on some multi-days with big waves, and it was the ideal boat for the Grand Canyon, better than the PRO 18' rafts the rest of the team had, or the 16' NRS single tube cat that was the only other private boat on my trip. Not worth doing for less than a couple of days, but it was an effortless boat to put through big, tough water. Holes that could potentially flip my Otter were nothing to the cat. I took the Otter through Warm Spings on the Yampa at 17,000 cfs and was seriously worried. The big cat would have lapped it up. Want to sell me your tubes? ;>) I never have understood asymetrical oar positions, my boats have always been rigged to be as perfectly balanced as possible, basically no real forward or aft as far as the oar station goes. My cooler and dry box are rigged so either one can be the oar bench with the geometry as similar as possible. I've only tried a stern rigged raft once and hated it. I pulled a fore rigged cat off of several rocks on a Lodore trip and could not fathom the logic behind that set-up. Not to start a pins/clips type thread, but seriously, what is the argument for setting an oar station way ahead or behind the boat's CG? I get the stern rig is better for guided trips to stuff on more passengers, hand them a paddle, and let them pretend they are boating, but the foreward station on cats... what up?
I have an extra set of these tubes in grand junction if youre interested.
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