Solo in a Mad River Adventure 16?

I recently purchased a new Mad River Adventure 16. I’ve taken it out several times with a friend but not yet solo. Has anyone soloed this canoe? If so, how does it handle? Also…any tips on how to get it off the truck and into the water alone would be helpful.



no sh*t
this thing is a beast

Unlike those

– Last Updated: Mar-24-07 11:16 PM EST –

who have opinions but no experience, I have actually paddled the boat on a blackwater river in NC.

Heavy, yes. Stable, yes. I was graciously lent a Bending Branches double blade paddle, 280 I recall (thanks CWDH!) and I had no trouble maintaining the pace of the group. Not my first choice for a solo, but it works.

Oh, yeah, I used my Crazy Creek chair on the center seat. most helpful.


I was going
to give you truck loading/unloading tips, then I saw the weight of that beast. Just make sure your health insurance is paid up. Man, my 68 pound Swift Dumoine kills me, 81 pounds for your MR, I’d be an inch shorter after each trip.

I Have a MR A16 also…
I took my Adventure 16 out for her maiden run on Lake Conway on a breezy day (big mistake) I was solo and paddling from the back, using both a canoe paddle and a kayak paddle. The forward 1/3 of the boat was dry and the wind had its way with me! Next trip I plan on adding some weight up front to see how she tracks.

Thanks Everyone!
Thanks everyone for all the great info. I’m hoping to take is solo as soon as I buy a double blade paddle and crazy creek seat.


I bought my Adventure 16
…because of all the cup holders! :wink:

I have one, got it last Fall and only got out a half dozen times with it, but several weights/configs.

  1. Solo from the back seat w/ DB kayak paddle: bow will stick up in the air, extremely poor tracking, good speed though.

  2. Solo from back seat with 70# lab just behind front seat & DB kayak paddle: MUCH nicer, Adventure sat in the water like it should, tracked 1000% better than #1, easy paddle and good speed.

  3. Me in back (210#), wife in front (105#), two boys in center (65# & 40#) and lab behind front seat (70#), two paddlers w/ DB kayak paddles: Tracked straight as an arrow, a little slower than 1 & 2 and a little better stability (even when our lab wanted a drink over the side).

  4. Me in back and 40# son in front seat, me only paddling DB kayak paddle: easiest, fastest paddle yet, great tracking & stability.

    'Never tried it from the center seat solo, but I would assume that would work from other posts. Sitting in the center kind of negates the reason you purchased a lead weight of a canoe, though, doesn’t it (ie, the seats)? I’d suggest that you just make sure you have either 50# worth of gear or a 50# bag of sand or salt to sit in the bow and you’ll be fine sitting in the rear. Also, the stearn is quite a bit narrower than the center, so double-blading will be much smoother and easier (and drier).

    As far as loading it solo: done it, don’t want to do it again. Not much else to say about that . . . .

    Good luck!!!

cart for getting boat to water
If you can’t park to unload the canoe right by the water, a cart is nice. I bought a Paddleboy Fat Boy model to use for hauling my Tripper to the water. It slips on easily and makes hauling from parking area to water a reasonable one-person job.