I have not capsized the canoe yet, but I was looking for some helpful videos of deep water, solo canoe re-entry and right-siding. I looked at youtube, but only found 2 person situations and fails…lol
I’ve never capsized a canoe out on a
lake, and have never worried about the issue of re-entry. I don't think lake capsizing is a common incident if you watch the weather and conditions. Swamping in heavy water is more likely, but if you are kneeling (as you should be in rough conditions) and have some well-place flotation in the boat, you needn't turn turtle when you are swamped. And, if conditions are still so rough that they swamp your boat, what good will it do to reboard?
First, stay out of heavy lake water. Second, kneel when conditions are rough, and have the boat set up so that your kneeling position allows good boat control. Third, make sure you have a space where you can swipe a bailer to remove water, or install a hand pump.
I know people who can roll a whitewater canoe upright after capsizing, but sane whitewater paddlers don't take whitewater canoes out on rough lake water, because such boats don't behave well.
Focus on skills that you need and will use.
Re-entering a canoe isn’t terribly difficult if you’re fairly athletic, there arn’t many ways to do it, either over an end or over the side. Either way you’ll end up with a fair amount of water in the boat that you’ll need a way to remove. This time of the year paddling alone, specially if you’re a beginner is not a great idea.
Where in northern IL?
In a solo?
The best I have done is with a double blade, a stirrup and a paddle float and bailer. I pause before I get in the solo boat to bail most of the water.
Solo boats are very unstable with a significant amount of water. Its basically the same format as a sea kayak stirrup and paddle float reentry, but you have to remember there is far more water in a solo canoe than a bulkeaded sea kayak.
The other problem is that I bet few solo canoeists carry a paddle float(nor a double blade). It makes a good pillow.
I wish I could execute the same with a single blade but the force against the paddle just rips the paddle shaft off the thwart (velcroed on)
You would have to have incredible balance and be a midget to land in the bow of a solo with a push up over the stem.
Sometimes the heel hook does work if there is not too much water in the boat and you can balance against it slopping around.
Bring a friend
I’ve tried unsuccessfully to do solo reentries into my YS Solo. The way I learned it, you keep your weight off the gunwales and down in the chines. When you’re ready to reenter, you kick hard and roll yourself up over the gunwales and into the boat. If you do it right, you shouldn’t take on too much water – at least that’s the idea. Unless there is someone holding the far side, I usually flip the boat over again. I have a little better luck with my big tandem boat, but when would I paddle that beast alone in the middle of a lake.
Getting the water out of a swamped boat alone is another problem. I can flip my YS up and out of the water pretty easily and it ends up almost empty. With my tandem, it’s a lot harder and I would have to bail. If I was alone in cold water, I would have hypothermia long before I emptied the boat.
With someone to help empty the boat and to hold the far side, getting back in the canoe is easy - I say bring a friend.
Don’t even bother with it
99 percent cannot do it in water that is over their head, unless you have a 19 pound boat, and then after you flip it you’ll have a dickens of a time getting into it.
Just stay close to shore in cold water, and if you tip, swim the boat into the beach.
It’s very difficult to swim a loaded boat. Have a throw bag with 100-ft. of line velcro attached to the bow breasthook. Pull it off, swim til you reach bottom or shore, then pull boat in. Have a 3-foot line attached to one side of a mid-ship thwart. Even a loaded canoe can be turned using that as a pry line. Pull it out and over the canoe bottom, put a knee against the hull and pull. Flip out what water you can. Devise a quick way to secure pole or solo canoe paddle with paddlefloat(longer than normal two-blade paddle. See Bending Branches glass Slice Solo Canoe Paddle) to thwart and reenter. See method shown in this animation. In cold water you still want to be close to shore. You would need to have this all down pat so immersion time is only a few minutes even with a good drysuit.
Agree that 99%
of folks can’t do it…and this is NOT the time of year to practice unless you wear a drysuit. Keep to shore (and even then dress for immersion) and take a buddy. Note that even a buddy is worthless unless you both know what to do and can actually do it. Best advice, wait until spring.