Reccomendations on a new boat....

backround info on me/ my paddling style…

5-11, 230lbs

paddled almost exclusively ozark stremas and rivers, rock bottoms, BOAT WILL GET SCRATCHED UP so I cant do fibergalss. Sometimes lakes… mostly flatwater with class1-2 rapids.

looking for something in the 13-14’ range.

Currently I have an old town dirigo 14.5 and love it. lots of room, comfortable, etc.

I want a rec/touring style boat, that will offer me a little more performace. open cockpit a plus, butnot a requirement. Must be able to store 3 or so days worth of camping gear (no prob in my current 14.5’ boat, dont expect it to be any porb in a similar size one)

would like it to be under $1000. new or used doesnt matter, but im looking for suggestions on what model/brand to try next

Sounds like yer want a canoo…

never considered a solo canoooo
what would the advantages of a solo canoe over a kayak?

ive only paddled tandem canoes and im not really impressed.

ive always felt much faster/more manuverable on a yak.

someone school me on solo canooooooos lol

Solo canoe vs. kayak
A good solo canoe will be as fast, and as maneuverable (sometimes even more maneuverable) than a kayak, provided you learn the proper strokes and balance. The only difference is a somewhat longer learning curve.

Canoe can hold more gear, easier to load and unload, and easier to find things you need when on the water.

And if you like paddling rivers, canoes are much easier to get in and out of for the inevitable carries over or through deadfalls. This makes them somewhat safer.

There are some canoes you can sit in and paddle like a kayak if you want.

They are easier to carry long distances, with a proper yoke.

They hold more beer.

They are prettier (personal opinion, of course)

People will be more impressed when you paddle by.

I will admit that the kayak has the advantage, usually, in very windy days on open water crossings, but that is the only avantage I can think of.

And yes, I kayak quite a lot.


food for thought
thanks for your insight… that gives me lots to ponder.

95% of my paddling trips are day trips of 15-20 miles… and Ill take a 2-3 day trip a couple times a year.

speed is one of my more important requirements, as I like to get a good workout and cover alot of miles in a day.

Currently a 12 mile paddle on slow water will take me 3-3.5 hours… so im figuring roughly 3 mph… more realistically 2.5.

The dirigo is a great boat, but to make and maintain a pace above 3 mph is quite a labor. I just feel like I should be making better pace for my amount of work.

and 90% of my trips are INTO the wind… I can recal just a handful of times the wind was at my back, blowing in my favor. Seems like im always paddling into a headwind!!!


lets keep this thread about new kayak recommendadtions… im going to go read up on solo canoes and if need bee create a new topic.

Thanks in advance pnetters for your advice/suggestions!

Sounds like you already
have what you need. For what you described, your Dirigo 14 should be just fine

Just a note about fiberglass…
Fiberglass boats stand up very well to scratching and abrasion from streams. E-glass and even more so, S-glass in vinylester or epoxy resin are very hard and do not sustain deep scratches easily. And if you do wear the stem or stern too deeply, “fiberglass” or composite construction is the easiest to repair.

ABS boats, with their vinyl skin, are fairly slippery, but in fact they scratch easier than fiberglass, and eventually the vinyl wears down to the ABS layer, and you have to fiberglass to repair it anyway.

Polyethelene boats have rather soft surfaces, and scratch more easily and more deeply than FG or ABS. Usually it takes a while to wear through a poly boat, but when that happens, closing the hole is difficult.

Of the three materials, “fiberglass” will stay smoother, longer. The only problem comes in the mind of the owner, because a lot of FG boats are surfaced with a miraculously smooth coating of gelcoat, and when the gelcoat gets scratched, for some reason it bothers owners more than when ABS gets dented or polyethelene gets gouged.