Greenland Style Boats in Rough Water???

quite a bit of testing has been done on the edge issue. Certainly removing a lot of volume would change a hull, but the actual edge has more to do with style and tradition. One manufacturer placed edges on poly boats as a means to try to stiffen rental poly hulls. People became enamored with the edges and attributed all sorts of possitive things to them. Same plug with de-tuned edges paddled the same. But the bottom line is what people feel and think is their reality. It is the overall shape - coefficients, etc., that make boats do what they do. Now, a planning hulled surf or WW boat is an entirely different beast, In displacement mode they are very inefficient. They rely on wave energy to plane, and once planing the edges come into play. Sea kayaks spend most of their lives in displacement mode. You don’t see hard edges on race kayaks, surf skis, Americus cup yachts etc., as they add drag. Barton speaks to this on Epic’s site.

greenlander speed
The greenlander pro seems pretty quick with

good glide. To me it feels similar to caribou

with less drag & push’s less water with paddled

at a good pace. But the aquanaut feels like a

faster boat, seems to take a bit to get it going

but once your up to speed it glides nice.

Actually it was aquanaut LV. As far as build quailty valley seems alot more solid then the

greenlander pro I have.

Seems that people are quick to discourage generalizations…I don’t entirely disagree; however a few things I would respectfully like to point out:

-the argument that it is the motor that counts when it comes to boat speed is, of course, absolutely true…but when using the same motor (same paddler) some boats are going to be faster than others. When someone comments or asks about the speed of one boat vs. another I think it is implied that he is asking about the speed of the boats given the SAME motor.

-Agree that there is a lot that defines boat handling other than chines…rocker, length, width, shape of the bottom, volume, fit, size of the paddler, etc; however, certain boat characteristics will result in certain handling characteristics. Soft chines and hard chines are going to make a boat handle and feel different with all other things being equal (Pintail vs. Anas Acuta). More rocker is going to result in certain attributes in general like more manueverability, less tracking, etc.

I guess that the point of my question was specifically to hear how a very hard chined boat with flat sides (like the Greenlander Pro) would act in beam seas. Of course there are so many variable pertaining to its overall handling and rough water capability…but the way it reacts in beam seas I would think would be distinctly different given its chines and flat sides.

Not trying to ruffle any feathers, but just wanted to point out that generalizations are not entirely unreasonable and it is understood that other variable do affect the overall boat characteristics.


Chine mythology
Pintail and Anas are very different kayaks. Pintail is not just a chineless Anas. It’s wider and overall cross sections are very different.

If you want to compare an example where all else is essentially equal, compare the strip and S&G versions of Nick Schade’s Night Heron. He’ll tell you there are some slight differences in the numbers, but below ability to detect/evaluate on the water.

The things people attribute to the chines are nearly all due to other things. Hard edges should be primarily a material/process factor. SOF and S&G will automatically have them. Molded plastics and composites (including strippers) really have no good reason to have hard corners - unless someone is really set on the aesthetic - and there are many good reasons to lose them in these materials.

Bottom line: The water does not see the chines the same way you do.

Chines vs. Edges
Based on Salty’s comments I would now agree that the hard edges may not have a large affect on handling, but I would still think that hard chines (which could have rounded edges) and flat sides will have an affect on boat handling.


Yes bowler
That pertains to overall profile, and certainly a slabbier side could get pushed around more than a rounded chine…BUT, there are balances of stability, directional stability, blah blah, Some rather slabby sided Brit designs are super stable and excellent in rough beamy seas. You have to look at the overall hull and several variables. Your interest here leads me to encourage you to seek out professional designers, naval architects etc., to learn more.

Well, finally had the opportunity to paddle in some good rough conditions. The winds picked up in the right direction and the water on the bay was super rough today, and very confused with some clapotis along the jetties and breakwaters outside of the marina. Got to paddle for about 2 hours in these conditions.

Man, the GP rocks in rough water! I was very impressed. Despite the rough water and high winds I was easily able to turn the boat in any direction and maintain any course without the use of the skeg, going both forwards and backwards.

A slight weight shift was all the edge required to turn the boat. The secondary stability was more than ample in beam seas and in the clapotis. The hull was a bit livlier than my Aquanaut, but still plenty confidence inspiring if you kept your hips loose and relied on the boat’s secondary (which kicks in a little later than with my Aquanaut).

I did not find that the slab sides really made much difference at all.

The boat really excelled in the rough water…lively and fun, easy to maintain a course and to turn, plenty stable in beam seas and confused water, responded well to edging and rudder strokes.

Great rough water boat!


You should copy n post this writeup…
…on the PNET Product Reviews…

well said


second that
My findings also.

As far as perceived sped, I don’t feel a significant slowdown in rough seas in my greenlander, and that’s one of the reasons I enjoy it.

greenlander pro handling

– Last Updated: Apr-14-07 8:28 PM EST –

The more I paddle this boat the more I like it.
I've had GP little over a month & this boat
feels comfortable like an old pair of jeans
your always glad to get into. Had her out in
some rough stuff today & must concour that this
design is definitely a capable boat.
I think my next boat is explorer LV. The chopped
down deck & fit are just about perfect once
the seat is swapped out for a ndk foam seat.
The smaller cockpit is nice for rolling & bracing.

Now I’m wondering about hard chines.

– Last Updated: Apr-16-07 3:39 AM EST –

I took a couple things away from this discussion.

1. For an otherwise identical hull, rounded chines wouldn't feel much if any different to the paddler than hard chines.

2. In practical terms, round vs hard chines are more a function of building method and materials.

The implication I draw from this is that the glass "Greenland" boats have hard chines more for appearance than for anything else.

Here's what I'm wondering though. Why did Foster build his glass boats with hard chines? That would have started before the jump in SOF popularity of the last couple years. Rounding the chines an inch would improve structural integrity in fiberglass I would think. So why did Foster go with hard chines?

Paul S.

do feel slightly differant in some conditions. look at the edges (rails) on a dedicated surf boat.

it’s also harder to do a Petrussian with rounded chines…nothing to grab, unless you have a keel strip and can reach it.

Best Wishes


Got It Right…

– Last Updated: Apr-16-07 6:19 AM EST –

but to be more explicit, Foster was playing in the surf since as kid. I think he designed his long boats with some thought of surf performance. It will carve better into a waveface better than a rounder chine but may be of little use or unforgiving for someone not good with edging in the first place.

Since most longboaters don't buy their boats explicitly with full out surfing in mind (and if they do, they should just go full out and get a surf kayak), the chines is really just one small facet of the overall design which impacts certain performance attributes more than other. For example my old G-Style S&G has hard chines but I found in a lousy surfer compared to my old Montuak with rounded chines. Why, because the S&G was minimally rockered point A to B boat and had a tendency to pearl and broach on any wave of size or steepness. The Montuak has enough rocker for it to avoid pearling and still maneuver on moderate wavefaces (spilling type waves). The Montauk started me down the path of surfing more than any other boat. The AA would probably outsurf the Montauk (at least the way I would want it to) because it has hard chines and good rocker.

But some folks hate/can't deal with rough water in the first place. So the hard chines actually may be a disservice for them. It's just a bit more unforgiving and something to catch and trip on beam seas whereas a rounded chine will let some stuff slide by and under.


Had that happen…

– Last Updated: Apr-16-07 8:10 AM EST –

Took my Vela into my one shot at real surf so far - it was running more like 5 ft than 3 - my thinking was that if I spent a lot of time out of the boat, I'd rather see her beat me to shore than my Expl LV. Veryy tough layup. As it turned out that part was a good call. I found that dealing with that amount of spinning and rolling all at once was just not something I could wrap my head around on my first day at it. (Tho' I was likely having too much fun too - had been decades since I body-surfed on the Jersey shore.)

But I also found out that the single hard chine on the Vela was a personality in itself. Held like a banshee when I had the boat set the right way, insta-flip once it caught wrong. I really do feel like it was doing both things with a sharper response than I would have found in the Explorer.

Hard chines
I used to paddle ellesmere but in really rough

water especially getting hit from the side

the boat felt really twitchy. The ellesmere has

an arch bottom no real v to the hull & it

would rock back and forth from chine to chine.

But greenlander pro with a definite v bottom

& hard chines not so noticeable because of the

v shaped hull. Other boats that where a hand

full to me were shilloutte probably because of

rounded bottom & no definite v shape to hull.

It’s just a bit more unforgiving…
“It’s just a bit more unforgiving and something to catch and trip on beam seas whereas a rounded chine will let some stuff slide by and under.”

That is consistent with what I have been told by very seasoned paddlers and from my bit of experience.

This seems to be more pronounced in ww boats. Crossing eddies seems less technical in my Pirouette than my Inazone. I’ve noticed that newer planing hull hard chined ww boats tend to be notably wider than old school displacement hull round chine boats. My Pirouette has lower primary and rolls easier and quicker than my Inazone. The Pirouette is also noticably faster than the Inazone, though this likely has less to do with the chines than it being longer and narrower. Another reminder that chines are only one of many aspects of hull design.

It seems that the soft edge hard chine of a Romany (or Explorer) might be a middle road that works well for many. My Aquanaut has harder chining, though soft edged, than friends’ Avocets. The 'naut’s chining is softer than an Explorer but harder than a Nordkapp.

Greenlander Pro

– Last Updated: Apr-16-07 9:28 AM EST –

I second everything Jed said. The boat performs very well in rough water but is more challenging in following seas than my Explorer. Secondary stability is solid but comes on later than the Explorer. If you foam it out right, you can totally control this boat with a simple flick of the hips.

Secondary kicks in late…
Agree with the comment above…the secondary in the GP is very solid, but kicks in much later than many boats.

I believe that this is what can make the GP feel “less forgiving” than an Aquanaut or Explorer. Their secondary kicks in much sooner making the boat more confidence inspiring.

I think that someone who is not confident in rough water would feel somewhat uncomfortable in the GP. When beams seas catch it from the side it tends to roll under you until it hits its secondary wall…which means that the hull will roll under you more and to a greater angle of heel–not a big deal if you keep loose hips and are confident in rough conditions, but a less confident paddler would probably stiffen up thus potentially capsizing.