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Paddling The Paddling forum is for discussion that relates directly to wilderness paddling (canoeing, kayaking, rafting). Topics focus on trip planning and gear.


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  #1  
Old 11-05-2012, 04:30 PM
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Forttom Forttom is offline
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Clueless About Canoeing

I've been interested in Canoeing (mostly in small lakes and slow moving shallow rivers). I mostly want to drift, fish and paddle.

I see the plastic canoe's at some of the local chain sporting good's stores, that go for about $400. They look bullet proof, but is this a good place to start?

They also have a square cutout in the rear for a battery, and small trolling motor mount on the rear.

I am clueless, and wondering if this is a good place to start. Am I completely off base, or should I just save my money and buy new camping gear

Thanks in advance for any help.

FT.
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:34 PM
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dsuursoo dsuursoo is offline
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depending on what you wind up using it for, an ABS/composite canoe can last a LONG time.

an ABS canoe is gonna be a bit on the heavy side, which will come up when storing, loading to vehicle, unloading, launching, and portages.

they can be pretty solid, depending on who made them. they can also handle like pigs and float as well as footballs(which is to say, they float but not exactly in the most stable fashion) if they're made/balanced poorly.

the very first place to start would be figuring out where it's going to go, and who it's going to carry, and then from there you can work out what models are best.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:07 PM
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Forttom Forttom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsuursoo
depending on what you wind up using it for, an ABS/composite canoe can last a LONG time.

an ABS canoe is gonna be a bit on the heavy side, which will come up when storing, loading to vehicle, unloading, launching, and portages.

they can be pretty solid, depending on who made them. they can also handle like pigs and float as well as footballs(which is to say, they float but not exactly in the most stable fashion) if they're made/balanced poorly.

the very first place to start would be figuring out where it's going to go, and who it's going to carry, and then from there you can work out what models are best.
Probably just me in the Canoe...Launched at boat ramp in very small lakes, and from road access to slow moving (mostly) shallow rivers. I picked one up, and it was pretty darned heavy, so I don't plan on carrying it far.

Thanks,
FT.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:37 PM
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GWyble GWyble is offline
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Maybe a kayak is a better option. I had a Pelican canoe make of Ram-X material. It was tough but a bit heavy and was a two person operation.

Glenn
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Old 11-06-2012, 05:25 AM
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Forttom Forttom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GWyble
Maybe a kayak is a better option. I had a Pelican canoe make of Ram-X material. It was tough but a bit heavy and was a two person operation.

Glenn
I was under the understanding that there is a steep learning curve to using a kayak? Have been looking at them, but didn't pay any attention, really, becuase all I want to do is drift down stream, or across a small lake, and fish/relax. The other thing I liked about the canoe, is it had a mount for a trolling motor, so you can drift down the river a bit, and then "motor" back up?

Again, keep in mind, that I'm totally ignorant of the subject, so feel free to jump right in, and tell me if I'm making a big mistake, here.

FT
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Old 11-06-2012, 04:36 PM
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Kylemeister Kylemeister is offline
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Just an idea: Here in Oklahoma, we have a couple of rivers that are big recreation areas. There are a number of different "float trip" operators. Pay a fee, sign the waiver, they haul you 6 or 12 miles up river, you float back down to their operation. Canoes & kayaks are fairly common. Spend a weekend & try both.

I have a friend whose son bass fishes from a kayak. He has a pretty nice wheeled gizmo (a couple of wheels and a bracket the canoe fits into) that he uses to help roll the kayak from the parking area to where we put in to fish. His is 12 or 14 feet long and he manages it by himself pretty easily.
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:08 PM
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GWyble GWyble is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forttom
I was under the understanding that there is a steep learning curve to using a kayak? Have been looking at them, but didn't pay any attention, really, becuase all I want to do is drift down stream, or across a small lake, and fish/relax. The other thing I liked about the canoe, is it had a mount for a trolling motor, so you can drift down the river a bit, and then "motor" back up?


I attached a trolling motor to my canoe for tooling around a lake and fishing. It probably wouldn't keep up with much current if you trying to go upstream in a river.

I have seen a fishing version of a kayak that has some sort of flippers you work with your feet. They are pricey but possibly a good option.

Kayaks in calm water aren't that difficult but a like jacket would be in order.

Glenn
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:06 PM
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Kylemeister Kylemeister is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GWyble
I
I have seen a fishing version of a kayak that has some sort of flippers you work with your feet. They are pricey but possibly a good option.

Hobie Cat Mirage Drive. Pricey, but they look awesome.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:26 PM
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ColoradoWalt ColoradoWalt is offline
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I have both a canoe and kayak. For fishing IMHO the kayak wins hands down. I would suggest finding a local canoe/kayak store. They often hold "try before you buy" sessions on a Saturday morning at a local lake or river. And a bonus, at the end of the summer rental season they often sell their rental fleet at a discount.

BTW, in some states (like my home state of Florida) if you attach a motor to the vessel you have to register it.
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Old 11-06-2012, 07:30 PM
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Ralph Ralph is offline
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I learned canoeing as a 7-year-old boy in Maine, using 17' wood & canvas Old Towns that weighed a lot more than I did. I'm 73 now and have used many types of canoe, the finest fresh watercraft ever built.

Most canoes can handle 10 times their weight or more, some as much as 20 times their weight. Long and narrow are fast, shorter and broader more stable. Bigger, of course, is heavier, and bigger but lighter is more expensive. Materials vary from plastics (generally heavier but less expensive) multilayer thermoplastics (Royalex) aluminum (low maintenance) cedar strip (beautiful but fairly expensive) ultralight plastics (kevlar and very expensive) fiberglass (low maintensance and fairly inexpensive) and wood & canvas (heavy and very expensive).

Sounds like you want a solo or light tandem. If you opt for a light tandem, get a double end - you paddle solo by reversing the ends - facing the stern and using the center seat/thwart. You don't need a square-end to run a motor, there are side motor mounts available.

One thing to consider about motors, in NY and maybe other states a motorized boat (elecric trolling motor counts) requires registration as a motor vehicle. This involves a fee and payment of sales tax - even if you buy used - and placement of registration numbers on the boat.

Look in classifieds, Craig's List etc. to find a good used canoe. These frequently come with paddles and other accessories. If you won't be portaging the weight isn't all that important though you do want something you can load and unload. Best would be trying it out for stability and getting someone to show you basic paddle strokes and handling.

Canoes have been around for a long time and are quite sophisticated in design. Keel or no keel, rocker, tumblehome, length and beam all affect stability and handling. It can get pretty complicated and somewhat beyond a simple posting. Books have been written on the subject - Bill Mason's Song of the Paddle is a good one - and it would be worthwhile to read up on the subject. On the other hand, fall is a good time to buy a used boat.
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