Canoes similar to Advantage

Thanks to a recommendation I got some good info on boat choice for the Texas Water Safari. Based on my skill level several people suggested the Wenonah Advantage with a rudder added for added manuverability in the white-water section and control in the wind and waves on the bay crossing section.

I hate to be locked into just one choice so can anyone recommend some canoes which would be similar to the Wenonah Advantage.


How heavy can the canoe be?
Do you want to keep it under 40 lbs?

I’ve heard that the Rapidfire is fast:

I haven’t paddled a Rapidfire.

I just got an ultra light Advantage toward the end of last summer. The day that I bought the Advantage, I also paddled a Bell Magic for about an hour on a lake with some wind, chop and boat wakes and the Magic felt more comfortable to me in the wakes, chop and wind than the Advantage did. I haven’t paddled the Advantage on any rivers yet. The Magic may be another alternative, though, my understanding is that it isn’t as fast as an Advantage for a racer.

I do have a foot controlled rudder on my Sawyer Summersong and it definately helps in windy and wavy conditions.

I’m 5’6, 155 lbs.

If boat weight wasn’t an issue, a used Sawyer Loon might be a fun choice. My Loon is very comfy and sea worthy and pretty efficient, but it weighs about 55 lbs.

I’ve never raced, so keep that in mind. The racers on this board will follow with info verified in their races.

Good luck in the race.

like the advantage
Sawyer DY Special

Sawyer Shockwave

Wenonah C1F

Clipper Freedom

Tha Advantage will be the easiest to find of this group. The C1F wouldn’t be the best in wildwater. An earlier C1W would be better. Shockwave, with it’s recurved stern would preclude the use of a rudder, but then I would debate the usefulness of a rudder in swift water.

I don’t see how a rudder would help

– Last Updated: Feb-20-09 11:47 PM EST –

in whitewater, and it would add the hazard of hanging up on rocks or ledges. In my 36 years of whitewater, I have never seen anyone make use of a rudder for maneuvering in whitewater. I honestly think a lightly loaded Advantage could be controlled quite effectively in whitewater with the paddle alone. A rudder might be of use on open estuaries, but make sure there is a convenient way to withdraw the thing when you don't want to be doing extra work.

Grasse River
Classic and Classic XL have been successful in C-1 stock class against the Advantage.

I am probably wrong about rudder
Most of the solo boats that I have seen built specifically for the Safari have had rudders. On the forum where I got the recommendations for the Advantage they did say to put a rudder on it. This was from paddlers who had finished the race in one or a similar canoe. They did not say why I needed the rudder or for what part of the race. I may have been wrong in assuming it was for better manuvering in the early part of the race where there are minor rapids. I will have to post another message there and try to get an explanation of where in the race the rudder is most useful.

Canoe weight
The comments made on the other forum suggested that Royalex canoes would be to heavy. I think I need to keep the weight around 40 lbs because of the multiple portages in the first part of the race. Looks like the flex-core or maybe even the Ultra-lite layups for the Advantage would be what I need.

Thanks for the information. I am still trying to decide if there is enough chance of me being able to finish the race to justify the expense and training time involved. It just seems that as a Texas paddler I should paddle the Texas Water Safari at least one time in my life. Most likely it will just turn out to be one of the many “dream” trips that I never get around to doing.


The rudder is more likely for control
in a side wind.The Voyager,Advantage’s big brother, is a beast in a side or quartering wind.

I second checking out…
the Grasse River Boatwork boats particularly the Classic and Classic XL especially if you’re like me and over 200 Lbs.

One Reason for a Rudder
Proper use of a rudder eliminates the need for correction strokes or switching sides as a means of course control. Most important, a very slight sideways push at the stern provides as much correction as a much stronger sideways push with a correction stroke applied within your paddle reach. Therefore, you can get the degree of course-correction you need without expending that energy and with just a tiny amount of drag. Kruger had that all figured out when he designed his boats.