balancing out the weight

225lb in the back of a Tripper…75lb kid in the front. Is this going to work? My son and I are planning a big trip up from one lake to another via a 1 mile slow moving river… should I add more weight to the front? Is there a ratio to go by?

load up
and see. I would try to get the kid as far forward as

possible. put gear in front of front seat and have kid sit on gear.See how the canoe handles then decide

if you have tomove you forward,

I would trim it out just using some jugs
or bladders of water, or your gear

A little bow light is OK, but it will perform better if it is not way to light.

Jack L

Jack L

Stick your heavy stuff immediately
behind the bow seat - maybe a wanigan of food or heavy gear. Put the light stuff immediately behind the center thwart. Also put anything you can in the bow in front of your son. Should be ok if you have a good load of gear and food. Otherwise - like said above - water jugs up in bow or under bow seat.

Bow light, upstream
If you have gear, you can move it around as others suggest to even out the trim. But for upstream work, a little bow light is okay. It makes it easier to slide the bow across the current, and the current always wants to push the heavy end downstream.

But, get head wind or a side wind, you will be happier if the boat is more evenly trimmed.

I Wonder if you could paddle the boat backwards. If the boy’s legs will fit behind the stern seat, you could sit on the bow seat facing the stern, and the trim ought to be about right.

I sometimes use a single-step stool as a mobile seat in my canoes. Not sure the brand, but the one I have is about a foot tall and has grippy rubber dots on the bottom so does not slide around. You can either put it in front of the bow seat, to move your son up, or put it in front of the stern seat to move yourself forward. I taped some foam carpet padding on the stool–it is finished with no grip surface that would eventually get uncomfortable. Mine is something like the Rubbermaid stool you can sometimes find at Walmart. But, if you have gear in the boat, the easiest thing to do is just trim out using the gear.


5 gal. collapsible water jug …

– Last Updated: Mar-26-12 10:14 AM EST –

...... they're plastic , cost maybe $10. , 5 gal. = 40 lbs. , fill it at the river dump back in when done . Floats because water in jug is neutral bouyancy . These jugs are good for your personal take from home water needs as well . If you get two (one for ballast) and one for personal , don't get the two mixed up after putting river water in one . Mark the personal one in some way . Sterilize personal jug after use (diluted chlorine bleach soak for an hr. then store empty with top loose) .

If you put this tucked up into the bow , that will give you the most forward moment for the extra 40 lbs. , further back gives less moment . In any case I think you'll you need the extra 40 lbs. all the way up front . Otherwise I think you will be a bit too bow light .

3 of these jugs with river water will allow you (225 lb.) to solo from stern seat . In wind (and I always thought current too) , the heavier end of the canoe wants to weathervein into the wind . Not that you can't control this , but the higher the winds , the more even the weight fore and aft need to be .

Load gear in center section , start with heavier items forward of center yoke , lighter behind (this with 75 lb. son in bow) .

You'll be Ok . A mile in light current going upriver will be easy for you . You'll probably be doing the lions share of the paddling , no problem with that little extra bow weight , canoe will handle predictably .

We always keep light weight breathable rain suits at the ready in a dry bag , can't tell how important that is . Nothing worse than getting soaked and cold , plus the rain pants are just plain good for keeping your regular pants dry when things are just wet/damp outside . The rubber/plastic suits aren't breathable , some are kinda heavy - some are disposable , sorta uncomfortable to wear , but they're better than not having anything . A good breathable lightweight rainsuit cost over $100. , some $150. ... you may want a good one one day .

I had the same issue…
when my youngest daughter was paddling with me. I have a Wenonah Spirit II with an adjustable bow seat that I was able to move pretty far forward. Not only did it help with trim, it also made paddling more enjoyable for her since she could easily reach both sides of the boat. On my other tandem, I bought a cheap seat and installed it up front so it would be comfortable for her. I could switch the seats/positions as needed.

My daughter is 17 now, and hasn’t paddled with me for a while. Enjoy paddling with your son - those are great times that go too fast.

A good first step
is to try the canoe paddling it stern first. This is not uncommon and we found it very helpful when our kids were small. It puts the little paddler in a much narrower part of the canoe for easy access to the water and a more effective draw stroke which can be very helpfut to you.

And you will need lots less ballast because you will be much closer to the center of the boat and the 75 pounder will be much further away from that center.