I dont no what solo canoe to buy

I’am 5’10 210 and i paddle flat rivers mostly. I do paddle swift creeks with sharp turns. I would like to be able to camp out of it. I’ve been looking at the mad river solo freedom. I want royalex because of durabilty and light. Any info would be great

ps dont want to spend over 1500

I have a MR Guide and it handles
really well. Not the fastest on the lakes, but OK. I’m a little heavier than you, and the boat carries me well with capacity for camping gear.

Others will suggest alternative choices, but I can’t think of one that is distinctly superior.

OT Pack
Old Town Pack. It’s royalex, 12 feet long, 32" wide, carries 400 lbs of gear and weights in at 33lbs. I sure love mine! Will cost you around $700. Might be worth you taking a look.

Freedom Solo
The Freedom Solo really is a nice boat. The very first response to your question speaks highly of the Mad River “Guide”, and just to make sure this is clear, that’s the same boat as the Freedom Solo (they changed the name several years ago).

For a moment I considered recommending the boat I use most for twisty-turny creeks with fast current, the Mohawk Odyssey 14, and it would not be a bad recommendation. However, that’s a boat that rapidly becomes a bit too sluggish for my taste when loaded well over 200 pounds. That won’t be as big an issue on moving water as on still water, but I suspect that the Freedom Solo has a more “gentle” reaction to increasing the load, so that it won’t suffer as much when you start throwing in camping gear (that’s only speculation on my part based on some general principles I’ve noticed over time. I haven’t ever paddled one, much less made the lightly- vs heavily-loaded comparison).

Other that would fit you
Yellowstone Solo.

Wenonah Argosy. I have only put in about a hundred tripping miles on mine and that was ligtly loaded. I have a friend who regularly has a 300 lb burden in it(him and gear). He does have a spray cover and takes off for a week in northern Quebec.

Raven is a bit big…it is a downriver tripper. You can heel it to make tight turns, but that is later in the paddling curriculum.

Charlie Wilson had a list of solos grouped by relative size posted here recently and ferreting around I could not find it. It is here somewhere.

You say you want Royalex because of durability and light weight. Composites are durable and are certainly lighter. They open up another world of boats. Royalex does better at recovering from a rap around a rock in rapids. If you have none, why the weight.

And all boats will carry 400 lbs, but performance suffers. I wish Old Town was honest and list performance weights, not maximum weight that the boat is safe at.

The list
I’ve a list of composite solo canoes currently available, and while 09 pricing is sketchy, I’ve just added the available ABS solos.

Please note ABS offers poor on water performance and is quite heavy, mostly in exchange for ephemeral claims of ruggedness.

email charliewilson610@roadrunner for the list.

If you just have to have royalex…
you might want to consider the Mohawk solos particularly the Odyssey 14. Not the fastest on flat water, but very capable for the twisty rivers, and up to class 2. Passable for class 3, but I’d want it bagged.

Although, like other posters have said, I’d recommend taking a look at some composites if you really want light even though your price point might eliminate many of them. You might want to check the classifieds and see if you can get a composite that way.