Looking at a new solo canoe

I’ve got an old Mohawk canoe that’s been in my family since '89 that is still in great shape. But I’d like to move into something a little nicer, to step up my canoeing skills. The mohawk is flat bottom, very wide, and doesn’t track that great.

I’m in the Pacific Northwest, and I don’t plan on doing any heavy whitewater, but I’d like to have a good range with this canoe. I take my young son with me on lakes and mild water, and I’d like to have some more speed and tracking, while still being able to handle local rivers.

I really like the Wenonah Argosy, I paddled it a while back and it seemed great. What other canoes would you recommend for me?

And Argosy vs Vagabond?

I’m 6’3" at 200lbs.


Try a Clipper Solitude
I own a Clipper Sea 1 my self. The workmanship is really good. I have read about the Jensen Design Solitude. It is recommended. Plus it’s made in yourr part of the world. Read the reviews here: http://www.paddling.net/Reviews/showReviews.html?prod=965 The company website is: http://clippercanoes.com/boat_specs.php?model_id=115

This is an all around or general purpose canoe.

Like I said, I own a Clipper Sea1. The things I like about it is the fact it will alow me to cover lots of water in most any wind condition. Read my review at: http://www.paddling.net/Reviews/showReviews.html?prod=665

Argosy vs Vagabond
completely different.

Vagabond is a bigger solo with not much wow factor. It does the job and makes you feel stable and secure.

Argosy is a sportier and turnier has more rocker…And lower in volume as its a little narrower.

I didnt care for the Vagabond…no wow factor. I do like the Argosy…my husband wants me to get another one for him!

your a big guy, you want to take your young son with you, who will only get older and bigger.

IMO you don’t want a solo canoe, you want a tandem canoe, that solos well, and will become a great team canoe as your son gets older. a tandem has great versatility if and when you paddle with others.

any number of symmetric canoes, often in the prospector family would fit the bill nicely, be very nice to paddle and have lots of fun factor to boot.

The Argosy is a fine boat.

The Swift Shearwater is another to consider if you can find one. It’s a sweet boat on lakes and slow rivers and has a ton of capacity for a solo so should handle your son easily, plus the sliding seat helps make room for your load and adjust the boat’s trim.

I missed that bit about the son
Nix a solo boat. Even if the kid fits in…it throws the trim off. Most solos wallow badly bow heavy.

I agree small tandem. By the age of four anyway the child should be helping you paddle if they are interested.

A small 2 person boat
would give your son a proper station to paddle from. I wonder if a Prospector is not too big and wind susceptible though, perhaps a “Bob’s Special” or a “Pal” in the Chestnut designs would be better

Coonsider a…
NovaCraft PAL, pilgrim.


Agree - no solo for you…

– Last Updated: Nov-25-09 11:47 AM EST –

...unless you can afford two boats.

Other tandems to look at that solo pretty well on easy water...

Old town Penobscot
Wenonah Escapade
Mad River Malecite (at least, the older ones)

All three can be found with a center (solo) seat or easily have one added. And being either shallow arch or Vee, all three (and the above mentioned Pal) should be faster and more stable than your flat-bottom boat while also tracking well.


– Last Updated: Nov-25-09 1:15 PM EST –

If you are 6'3" tall & weigh 200 lbs, and are going to want to paddle with your child; the Vagabond, and the Argosy are not the canoes you're seeking in my opinion.

I am 6'4" tall & weigh 200 lbs, and previously owned both a Vagabond & an Argosy.

Some small tandems, already mentioned, would be better suited to your needs; especially if the child continues to canoe with you as their age/size increases.