Looking for 18-20' kayak, river trecking

My wife and I are going to join a local sailing club. I think they were hesitant, two years ago, to give us the green light. Sailing vs kayaks?

Now, it’s just no motor vessels. Located on the ohio river away from urban blight. Excited about getting a boat to store there. My primary boat is a kevlar caribou. For a secondary boat…i want something that i can rip off miles. Weight is not an issue. I’ll just make a kayak cart and wheel it50 yards onto the launch ramp. No car racks. No need to lift. A used boat is my preference. Something already broken in, but not broken. My first thought was a CD Extreme. Any other suggestions?

A used Glider, Looksha 2 or surfski
Gliders can be had cheap. Seda has some QC issues and you may be doing some patching, but the Glider will move. If you really want fast, get a surf ski.

In same range
as Extreme and Glider - QCC Q700 and EPIC 18.

Faster? - a WSBS EFT or T-Bolt - or surf ski.

None of these boats particularly say “river” to me, but the Ohio’s a pretty big river.

Can you define “fast” and “rip off miles” a bit more? How fast - how far? How long on the water each outing? Answers alter the suggestions as speed is only one part of overall efficiency.

what is fast? what are my conditions?
I’ld be out as little as one hour, but as long as 4 hrs. There are some destinations that might entice me if time permits: an island out in the river, and a tributary. The later is about 6-8 miles away. The ohio is flat in the summer, but barge traffic can send some nice rolling waves. There’s also the wind–rive is wide enough to kick up white caps. In the winter and spring, the river is high, moving, and flotsam is dangerous. The caribou, my primary boat, is a fine all purpose boat. It has enough water line for easy cruising and edges fine for turning in a nearby creek. This second boat would be strictly for the ohio. I’m not trying to win any races. And, I don’t want to push it…too many chronic injuries. I just want to paddle at 75% effort and feel like I can cover some distance. I thought a longer boat would do that and for once not have to worry about weight. Boat will be stored at launch site.

Unless you’re going to do overnights,
you might want to look at fast mid-length kayaks rather than an 18’ or 20’ boat. Reason is, a long, unloaded boat can get blown around a good bit. Also, something having some rocker, like a Looksha II, would be preferable to something with no rocker. Even on the Ohio, you might want some maneuverability. And if you start running smaller rivers like the Kentucky between locks or the lower Little Miami, you will want a bit of turning ability.

Caribou’s not known…
…to be a speed demon, but at 17’8" x 21.75" it’s no dog either. Good touring boat and should be fine for what you describe.

You will get a bit more speed in the other boats mentioned - but maybe not enough to bother with over those distances, especially if you’re not racing. Effort level in them should be very similar to what you feel now. Some like the Glider may take a little more effort to paddle.

To me, 6-8 miles one way (12-16 total) is not really very far in any sea/touring kayak unless conditions are working against you. What speeds are you making now?

A 4 hour paddle should reasonably get you 20+/- (not factoring current/WX) at a good effort level in any of those mentioned in this thread - including the Caribou. If not - maybe training is needed more than a new boat?

FYI - Loved the Caribou when I tested one and am a fan of it - but ended up getting a Q700. Different hull design, but seems to have the 'bou’s good points plus better speed.

Maybe a shorter boat would be better
A 16 footer like a Kajaksport Viking or an Eddyline Falcon16 may be better suited to what you posted. They cruise nice at 4.5- 5 knots with just a bit of effort. They do not have the top speed of the longer boats but are a blast to paddle in all types of conditions.

??? Would be slower than what he has!
Come on TC & g2d, we really should to take his current boat into consideration before suggesting others, no?

Why would someone primary boat is nearly 18 ft now (Caribou), who want’s to go faster, want to consider going to a shorter and/or wider boat?

I didn’t think this was about general touring boat suggestions (even if they are good ones!).

75% effort
Getting the longer boats up to speed requires a lot of effort. Certain shorter boats cruise at an easy pace with good speed with less effort.

Yes, I question his desire for more
speed on the Ohio, if he already has a good 18’ boat. Another problem with really fast boats, besides the fact that they are faster mainly at high effort levels, is that one has to be really sharp on the catch to keep them up to speed. This is why most people are better off covering miles in a boat that offers a tad more resistance.

If you want
to go fast in a 18’ stable boat I would suggest the QCC-700. I like it better than the glider although I have not tried this years glider. I also like it better than the cd extreme which only comes with a rudder. For me the 700 was faster and more comfortable.

more clarification
I certainly appreciate the comments. Realize I may need to elaborate. I really really like the Caribou. So much so that I don’t want to leave it at the sailing club where it could easily be lifted. A chain to a tree will simply deter the honest folks. I baby this boat. It’s kevlar. A second boat gives me the opportunity to have one that I don’t have to be so protective about. And, since it does not have to car topped, it can be a heavy fiberglass model. The comment on training is well directed. I ascribe to the belief that it’s the engine power in the boat, as well as the boat. My dilemma is that I am battling acute tendonitis in my right forearm/wrist. I am still determined to overcome this condition…two years now…with the right stretches and strengthening regimen. That’s another story/thread. Last comment, I can’t afford/justify a new boat. Need the good deal on a used one. Not many boats around here to demo or on the market used. I might call QCC…think they might have one of their returned 700’s, damaged and now repaired? Appearances and weight issues mean less to me. Seaworthiness…that’s still important. Ohio can be dangerous, in its own way. Thanks guys.

Used QCC

I’m getting ready to put my QCC-700 (Kevlar) up for sale. Too bad I’m down in Florida. I do think it would be a great choice for you. Best of luck.



QCC has a used Demo page

Anything not sold, or returned and fixed - will be there. 700s usually go fast - you have to keep looking. Only two listed now - one already sold (the other is the one Swedge just sent back!). To me they are often not that much cheaper - I’d rather have the ability to customize on a new order.

If you baby your 'bou - and wouldn’t want to leave it locked somewhere - you definitely won’t want to do it with a Q700. Keep mine inside - in an efficiency! At least the QCCs have U-bolts fore and aft to lock to.

I can’t think of a good go fast boat I’d be comfortable leaving somewhere in plain sight. Would have to be a real beater. I’m not a trusting soul - and can’t afford to replace a boat very easily.

you guys humble me
Fantasy to have a nice boat, even if it’s a good deal, to treat shabily. A local paddler, last year, sold his Sirrus for 600. Heavy fiberglass, re-epoxied a few times on the bottom. With the heavy lay up that the brit boat had, I would have fetl ok to drag around. Not nearly as fast as the boats mentioned here, but at least would give me that second boat, with its own pluses, to keep on site of the river. A very nice convenience. And, I agree, used boats that have small discounts…better to get one new.