OT Penobscot 15' Solo

I came across a used Penobscot 15’ solo and was wondering how it might perform on class II/III water. I’ve been keeping my eye out for a used Bell Yellowstone, but it might be a long wait before I come across one. Any thoughts on how the Penobscot might perform?


I know
a couple who routinely go to the whitewater nationals. He wants to get his wife/partner

a 15 foot penobscot for the solo races.

that being said; Good boat, good design, but if you do not have the skills and stregnth it probobly is not the best choice for class three white water.

Penn 15
I have one, and I paddle whitewater. I would not mix the two with happy results. That said, the Penn 15 is my fave solo (I have 5)

Boat’s best qualities

For comparison’s sake, I was wondering what your other boats are? What do you like about the Penobscot? The local river here is primarily class II, but there is one rapid that I’d rate a III. That would be the outer limits of my intended use for the boat. I’ve run the class II rapids in my Wenonah Adirodak (both solo and in tandem) with no flips yet. One concern I have with regard to the Penobscot 15 is that it doesn’t appear to have much rocker. Is this indeed the case? Your’s and other’s comments are appreciated.


Solo 15
As to rocker, there is none - the only way to effectively turn it quickly is to get it way over on edge. Its a great “go fast” boat and I did class 2+ in it but constant work, and almost impossible if you have to make fast eddies or quick turns. If its a straight shot class 2, add some air bags and you’ll be ok, not a particularly deep boat so ride is wet. I do agree its a great boat and sorry OT stopped making them but quick manueverability (sp?) is not good. My 2-cents!!

I must be weird
but i had a Penob 15 for a while, and I didn’t like it at all.

It didn’t do anything well. Slow as a pig. Didn’t track, but still didn’t like to turn. (How OT managed that, I’ll never know).

Of all the boats I’ve owned (OT Penob 16, OT Tripper, Dagger Sojourn, MR Outrage, Dagger Encore, Dagger Quake) or just paddled, that’s the only one I that I actually hated.

Is it fast?
I suppose “fast” is relative, I know with mine, i paddled mostly with guys in mohawk challengers and odysseys - both good boats but a little tubby and no speed demons. Never really paddled it against “fast” boats so you may have a point.

relative speed impression
A guy in our club who had one let me take it out for a short paddle on flat water. My impression was that it was a very competent boat, but probably middle of the pack speed-wise. He said that he had found it to be a good general-purpose boat, and he had been paddling it enough years that I imagine he was pretty well aquainted with it. It’s too bad Old Town doesn’t still make it - I think it would be a nice hull for a lot of people.

Check out the Wenonah Prospector 15…
for another option.