Mad River Screamer - Want information

What I “think” I know:

It was a down river racing canoe designed by Jim Henry. It was made in fiberglass layup from 1975 to 1979, and in 1984, and was made in kevlar layup in 1984.

I want any/all information you might have to offer regarding the Mad River screamer…specs, number made, pricing, negative/positive handling aspects, your experience paddling a Screamer, have any old photos?



Have you seen this photo?
Jim Henry racing a Kevlar Mad River Screamer in 1973:

Can be found on the Hemlock Canoe site.

The Mad River Traveler that I have (and you have seen) is said to be a redesign of the Screamer. Judging from the photo, it looks pretty similar.

The Traveler is a large volume solo boat. It is straight-keeled and doesn’t like to turn much unless heeled to the offside. It is deep, dry, and seaworthy and would certainly handle a large load.

Jim Henry in Screamer

Yes, have copy of that photo; Hemlock was first place I looked.

They have some great old photos on their website, and some really nice new/used boats to boot.

Should have never sold that red (Pete dumper) Hemlock SRT I had! Same one I dumped on long Buffalo river trip, while ogling sun bathing, bikini clad “river sirens” in middle of river, on fast, rocky shoal.


Here’s what I’ve found…

Length: 16’3"

Width: 27"

Depth at Center: 15"

Bow Height: 22"

Average Fiberglass Weight: 60 lbs.

Average Kevlar Weight: 48 lbs

Specifications: Screamer - V shaped hull design, all cloth layup made with flexible resins, ask rails, center thwart, Royalex spray decks, flotation tanks filled with polyurethane foam.

Screamer Experience

– Last Updated: Jun-17-13 11:03 AM EST –

We're missing some widths; there should be three: waterline, max and rails.

I owned two Screamers; a glass one and then a Kevlar version, which seems to have come out prior to 84.

At the time I loved the boats. They were fast and stable, although not stable enough for my Chessie to exit over the rail and keep the paddler dry.

The boat's issues were that it didn't turn because it had no rocker and the V hull had idiosyncratic handling characteristics. One had to read the river a hundred yards ahead, then lay the hull on a flat and draw it sideways to line up with clear drops/passages. That was in keeping with it's intended purpose. The Traveler and Fingerling were later, cut down, versions of the same hull, probably out of the same mold.

Neat bottom for it's day, but i wouldn't want one now. I outfitted mine with center pedestals.