new canoe advice

Hello everyone, I’m new to the forum my name is Jeremy. I am looking at getting my first canoe and would like some advice. I am looking for something I can fish out of and maybe take a weekend trip out in the wilderness. I will be solo most the time. Just me and my dog. But some of the time I will have my wife and hound daughter she is 2 1/2. Would like to spend no more then $1000. What would everyone suggest? I was looking at the old town saranac 160. Any help would be great.


FG or Kevlar 17ft boat
Look down through the posts for several threads on what type of boat to buy. Tough to find a solo boat that will make a good tandem boat. It is usually the other way around. What type of water; lakes, large rivers, boney rivers etc? For 1000 you should be able to find an almost new FG or kevlar boat in 16 or 17ft.


sounds like a wenonah solo plus might be the way to go. Your other option is any 16 to 17 foot symmetrical hull with bench seats. When solo you sit in the “stern” seat facing over the “bow”

I haven’t seen any “Kevlar” boats for
under $1000. Not new.

A Wenonah Aurora in Tuff-weave will cost maybe $1500. Light, stiff, durable, stable. But one of their Prospectors would be easier to paddle solo, heeled to one side, Canadian style.

More Information on Weight
It would be good to get an idea of how much you guys weigh and how much your dog weighs. Also your height will be important for the soloing aspect.

Will the whole family be going on the wilderness trips?

A site thank might interest you…
Google “Maddy the Goose” for a wilderness tripping site. The guy wilderness trips in a canoe with his dog and has posted lots of interesting stuff.

I paddle a solo canoe with my dog but it seems you’re looking for a tandem.

Good luck.

Better to rig the boat for solo or
tandem use. Paddling sitting backwards on the bow seat never gives proper trim, and has you reaching over the fattest part of the hull.

canoe advice
I weigh 185 and I’m 5’10’’. My dog is a lab so he probably weighs about 80. I and the dog will be the only ones going on a wilderness trip. I just basically want something that is light enough for solo use that I could take weekend survival trips out of and fishing. But would also like to be able to take my wife out and fish too. I wouldent be going over real rough water like rapids or anything. Just calm lakes and rivers.

Buy used.
Assuming the dog won’t be with you when the wife and child are and your wife is of similar or less size, you could go with several of the better 16’ tandems. If you stay on lakes and wide/flat rivers, you should do well with something like an Old Town Penobscot. You may be able to find a real nice example in the $500-$700 range.

As the child (or your family) grows, you will likely want to move up to a larger or more than one boat.

A 16’ Prospector would work and even handle more of a load, but it will be slower - and you will find it to be a real handful with a light load on a windy lake. Better for moving water though.

If you buy used, you won’t get hurt if you decide you want a different kind of boat as you grow into the sport. A well-cared for used canoe of good quality that was bought for a fair price usually sells for the same or only slightly less.

A few boats

Maybe not in like new condition but still in the nice to very good arena. Only searched for Wenonah. Brian

Agree With Steve
At your size and weight, a 16’ tandem ought to do fine. Small enough to solo and fish or wilderness camp out of but big enough for tandem day trips with the better half and your daughter.

A used composite boat would be great, and you might find one at your price. Bell, Mad River, Old Town, and Wenonah are some of the better manufacturers who are wide spread enough to have used boats turn up regularly.Royalex isn’t as sweet as a composite layup for your use, but would do fine.

Here are some model names just as a start:

Bell: Northwind, Morningstar, Northstar

Wenonah: Adirondak, Aurora

Mad River: Malecite, Explorer (maybe a little large), Horizon 17,

I can vouch for that load and that use in a Malecite. I paid $650 for mine (fiberglass), which was in excellent condition.

Penobscot notes…
Incidentally - several years ago I found a pretty ugly beat-up Penobscot for $250. Slightly overpriced, but I was in the midst of some kind of used-canoe shortage at the time. :wink:

It was barely usable, so I fixed it up some (seats, thwarts). Maybe spent another $30 in material - some I already had laying around (scrap wood). The family is still using it today, and I think it will be around for a long time.

I recently saw another one - not quite as nice as mine is now, but perfectly usable - going for $250.