Hemlock Eagle?

Hi All

I’m looking at a Hemlock Eagle, mostly for tripping. Would anyone here who has paddled one care to offer your impressions?



Hemlocks Eagle is a fine paddling boat; the rocker makes it maneuverable and the tumblehome allows smaller folks to stack their hands up.

The solid fabric construction adds a few lbs but yields a stronger boat that can be more easily repaired in case of a maximum credible accident.

Hemlock Eagle?
I’ve paddled Eagles on several trips, both lightly and heavily loaded. On one trip we had to cross an open bay in 20 knot plus winds and were moderately loaded. The boat handled just fine.

A couple of years ago we were doing freestyle demos at paddlefest and had someone asked if freestyle was possible in a tandem. He had an Eagle with a center seat. I told him to get his boat and he did. I did my full routine in it. It took some moving about in the boat in order to get my hands stacked over the gunnels on both sides but it was doable.

In summary, it is an excellant all around tandem and with a center seat can be paddled solo, (though it is a bit large for that) or Canadian.

Marc Ornstein

Dogpaddle Canoe Works

Millbrook AC-DC ?
I have considered replacing my Lincoln 5.3 with a Hemlock Eagle or Bell Northstar because it appears they can both be used solo if needed which is asking a bit of my Lincoln 5.3.

Any thoughts on comparison of these two boats to each other?

Only other boat that is manufactured near me, but I know nothing about is a Millbrook AC-DC.


Any thoughts on this one compared to the other two?

Eagle & NorthStar
NorthStar is longer in the waterline than Eagle, is slightly narrower and has differential rocker.

They are both 16- 16.5 foot boats designed by David Yost; the Eagle is based on Dave Curtis’s rework of the 16 ft Curtis NorthStar. The Bell NS is a little better lake boat, the Hemlock Eagle a little better river boat. Hairs, we’re splitting fine hairs.

I prefer the Hemlock lamination because it is solid fabric. Bell uses foam cores, which makes the hull lighter, but more fragile. Solid fabric is much more easily repairable.

Consider only Bell’s BlackGold laminate. The all kev laminate reduces the hulls life span significantly.

Thanks …
… for all the input guys.

And now to hijack my own thread:

CEW, you mention that Bell’s all-kevlar hulls have a much shorter lifespan. Would you mind elaborating on that? (The other 2 canoes I’m considering are Bell Northwinds - one in White Gold and the other Black Gold.)

Thanks again.


I think bell has dropped the white gold layup, but it is similar to the BlackGold except fiberglass is subbed for carbon, and the WG’s used core mat for bottom stiffness.

Both have/had stiff compression resistant layer[s] on the outside of the hull and high tensile strength Kevlar layers on the inside. The design theory is the stiff outer layer resists flex to yield a high performing hull. When stressed, the kev inner, which runs a greater radius, comes in tension sooner than if it were outside, and reinforces the FG or Carbon before it breaks.

All kevlar hulls generally get their stiffness from foam cores but are pretty flexible above waterline. Breakage is most likely to occur where the stiff core[s] and flexible fabric meet.

Most skin coat hulls have a very light glass layer on the outside, but it’s too light to provide much strength - it’s there to hold resin against the mold.

This isn’t much of a facvtor in summer rental businesses. They sell off the summers rentals every fall, after ~ 100 days use, but the consumer expects a little longer life.