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Old 01-11-2016, 02:16 AM   #21
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Rochester, NY
Posts: 119
I'm around your height; and weigh a bit more.

Very happy double blading my Wenonah Solo Plus. 16'6" and weighs 45# (iirc) for tuffweave. I know some folks don't like it too much but for bigger guys it will carry you and all your gear. Maybe the Prism; but I liked the bench seat of the solo.
"Buddy, I think I ate your pop tarts!"
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Old 01-19-2016, 03:43 PM   #22
charlie wilson
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Lower Saranac Lake
Posts: 572
There you go, everyone with a computer and solo boat suggesting the usual Promethian Fit Syndrome to their choice. The community is trying to be helpful with anecdotal knowledge; great campfire talk but everything is on a Cardinal, not Ordinal scale....

You are a big guy, probably need a larger hull, but first you need to select stance in the boat. Sitting low you might be stable in a 27.5" wide hull but rising to kneel against a seat edge will likely suggest a 30" hull and sitting marathon style an even wider one. There are 76 solo canoes between 27.5 and 31 inches in beam width and the waterline width and chine shape is more critical to stability than beam.

While double blade sticks seem to match pack canoe low seat stance, bents work best sitting at medium height and straights enhance control when kneeling, your own paddle preference will have some effect on boat selection too. [For example, one can use a double paddle with all three stances in the boat.]

The most stable pack canoe for big loads is probably Swift's Keewaydin 15 pack. It has proven significantly more stable than Osprey. The most stable kneeling solo might be the NorthStar's NorthWind Solo at 30.5in X 15.5ft. The next step up in stability would be Hemlock's Eaglet and Colden's StarFire.

I maintain a listing of solo boat specs that may prove helpful. Email for your own electronic copy. Of course it includes the Clippers, but this is a localized chat room and British Columbia is a fair hike to the West by NorthWest?

Last edited by charlie wilson; 11-06-2016 at 02:32 PM.. Reason: spelling/typing errors
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Old 01-19-2016, 06:29 PM   #23
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Maine
Posts: 2,177
Hope that list has the Clipper solos. Four of them . The Caribou S just out, the most volume. Its max width is at six inches up from the bottom.

Yet they are harder to find in the East than almost any other brand.

No anectdote. I will probably never see one.

Also its helpful not to get tangled in numbers as no one really shows hull cross sections. Consider visiting some shops like Swift and Hemlock. Feel the carcassi up.
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Old 01-20-2016, 05:31 PM   #24
Connecticut Yankee
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: CT
Posts: 687
I', 6' 3" and 220lbs. I built a wood strip boat of my own design to fit my own personal criteria. I wanted a fast cruising boat that I could use tripping with 60 to 70 lbs of gear if needed, handle the rough afternoon waves on the big Adirondack lakes, be maneuverable enough to paddle the Oswagatchie and similar water and paddle the occasional stretch of class 11+ whitewater.

The boat I built is 16'8" long 30 1/4" wide, about 29 1/2" at the nominal waterline, tumblehome gunwales just under 25", Depth at center 13 3/4" , cant remember the bow stern height of the top of my head but about 21" and 17". The hull is asymmetrical with 1 3/4" rocker in the bow and 1 1/4" in the stern. Cross section in the middle has some roundness in it. What is unique is that I built in quite a bit of flair in the bow above the waterline to give more buoyancy to ride up over big waves and in whitewater. Because this flair is above the waterline it doesn't effect the flat water speed. I have a sliding bucket seat on a pedestal with an adjustable foot brace, which allows both marathon style paddling for speed and distance as well as double kneeling for control and comfort. I also do a lot of single kneel paddling, on long trips I'll switch between all three techniques. I've got 3/8" foam closed sell foam glued to the bottom of the hull in front of the seat pedestal and back along the sides so my knees and shins are padded when kneeling.
Wood strip construction with 4 oz. cloth , 2 layers on the bottom below the waterline and several extra layers at bow and stern where the most wear is.
All up with a home made portage yoke it weighs in at 38 1/2 lbs.

It does everything I want, fun for a leisurely day paddle, I fly fish out of it , I've done a few class 11 rapids in it and paddled it at the ACA Open Canoe Downriver Nationals in the sprint event which was some good class 3 water, but that was unloaded of course. And it's perfect , in my opinion, for it's main purpose of tripping. I did 386 miles on the Connecticut River with it in 9 days, which is nearly 43 mile a day average. And it has become my go to boat for paddling in the Adirondacks.

John M.
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Last edited by Connecticut Yankee; 01-20-2016 at 05:41 PM..
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Old 10-16-2016, 08:47 AM   #25
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Cortland, NY
Posts: 1
I'm going to keep an eye on this thread. I'm a big guy and I've done probably 10 canoe camping trips up there, generally going from middle to lower Saranac Lake. Last year we did it on a weekend in the fall with 40mph gusts and waves like I have never seen in a canoe.

Wind was pushing us sideways right down the like like we were nothing. Anyhow, that was the only time we ever sank, and it was because we took too much water over the rail. We had a fully loaded Grumman 17 (with outriggers) but I am 6'7" 375# and the guy up front was 6' 165. Never had it ever occurred to us that I needed to get down off the seat and kneel, but that is what I will do from now on.

At any rate, I have decided that solo is best for me, either sitting or kneeling.... but I don't want to use that 17. So I am in the market for a used Grumman, either the G129 Solo, or the 13 or 15 foot model. Ideally, I think I'd like the G129 or the 15 footer for extra capacity.

As amazing some of these kevlar boats are, they are not for me. First, I can't afford anything like that, and second, I am a Grumman man to the end. (My Grandfather and Uncle worked there for decades)

Our next trip is actually a 4 day river trip in Maine, and I want to have my act together so I am not a liability for that. I hate when my size necessitates special arrangements, so I want to minimize that.

Looks like the Grumman's I mentioned can handle my weight and the probably 100# of gear I will have. 50# for the G129 is cake for portage for me. 69# for the 15' is still doable but now we are talking misery.

Went out last weekend on Lower in an Old Town Discovery 158. We tried it with 3 people and gear and were for sure going to capsize because of my high center of mass and sitting up on the seat. We made 2 trips, and with me and my two friends it was much better, but now that I have really researched, I will kneel from now on.

Anyhow.... Howdy!

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Old 10-28-2016, 08:25 PM   #26
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: VT
Posts: 71
I recommend checking in with Hornbeck. They make several different models. I field tested a 16' new design last summer. Depending on the hull design some can take big waves without much trouble. I own a 14' Hornbeck and have paddled large lakes in windy conditions and did not go for a swim. The wife and I take this boat out for two week trips with all our food supplies as well as a small dog.
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