I’m hoping to buy my first canoe this week and found a dagger reflection 15(roylex) used for $600. I was told the canoe is in good shape with normal wear and tear. I am new to canoeing and didn’t know if this is a reasonable price. I also found a used wenonah aurora 16(roylex) for $850. The canoe will be used by me 6’2" 230lbs, my wife 5’6" 150lbs, and 5yr old son(40lbs). We will mainly be using it for photography/fishing/and afternoon trips on slow creeks and rivers. If you experienced guys had to choose which would you pick? Any advise will be appreciated.
De Reflection 15 be a great boat
fer smaller tandem paddlers or solo.... but fer de load yer thinkin' about ah' definitely go fer de 16 footer. Iffin' ah' recollect right, yer could git de Dagger brandy new fer $800 waan they were still in production - so 600 smackers seems a bit high.
Besides the fact that “normal wear & tear” should be almost like new for $650 on the Dagger IMO, the Aurora is a better all-around tandem and better for your stated use. Only caveat is that $850 is a little high for a used royalex canoe unless it is in near-perfect condition and not very old - or it has some high-quality accessories (like paddles and paddling-specific pfd’s that all fit you and would be expensive if bought new) included.
Though I like the Reflection as a solo
canoe for trips with gear, I agree that it is small for a tandem. The Aurora will sit lighter on the water with a tandem team, making exploration of shallow waters easier.
With the indicated burden, you’d be better off ib a Reflection 16. Both R 15 and 16 are Steve Scarborough designs, from one of the best recent designers.
Fine boats, I’m looking for a 16 as a boathouse loaner hull myself!
Thanks for the advice. I decided the aurora will be the boat if he will come down on the price a bit. It’s a 2008 model and comes with a dolley. Is this boat going to be OK for me to do some solo trips in? I want to do some fishing by myself and don’t want to wear myself out just getting to my fishing holes.
I paid 400 for mine. It would be a bit small for your use. The WENONAH sounds like a better deal. I do love my dagger though.
It’s a bit wide for solo use, but
you can still manage it. Possibly you can get a double bladed paddle for days when lakes are windy.
If you search around this site, you'll find discussions on several ways to solo a tandem that will work with the Aurora. None of them will be as fast or easy as a dedicated solo, but the Aurora will do as good as most and better than many tandems when solo paddled.
When soloing a tandem (which I do often) I alternate between paddling backwards from the bow seat, kneeling behind the center thwart with the boat heeled, and standing with a pole (yes, the pole works in deep water too). Some people will solo such a boat (if they don't have to turn quickly) by adding ballast to the bow and paddling from the stern as you would when tandem. Each method has it's better points, but I find the pole to be the most versatile (but wetter).
The big question is - how far is it to your fishing holes, and what kind of water? If it's just a mile or less over flat water with little wind, should be no problem once you get used to it. Add some distance or some wind and good technique will make a lot of difference. Throw some technical rapids in there and it becomes more of a problem, but still do-able up to a point.
Good luck on the dealing!
Not to gloat but
This past February I bought a 16’ Reflection in good shape and he included two wooden paddles. He was getting out of the sport and only wanted $150 for everything. I knew nothing about the boat before I bought it but am very pleased with it. Guess I lucked out.