Solo penobscot 16

Well, I have been paddling my Penobscot 16 this year, mostly solo. I love it. It is fun and very manoverabe. There is great stability for fishing, and it will haul much more than I will ever need to carry on a solo trip. It is slow as a solo, but I don’t mind. I love my Shearwater and solo trip in that, but am having a lot of fun with the Penobscot. So I was wondering if many people solo with one, and if they do, do they go on long trips in it?


here’s one

Penobscot solo
I don’t paddle a Penobscot 16 as a solo boat but have many friends who do. At least two of them regularly take them on multi-day trips, usually four or five nights on the river (and they don’t pack light.) They have been doing this for years. While most of us have turned to solo canoes, these two are quite happy soloing their Penobscot 16’s. They have taken them on smaller rivers like the Current in Missouri and the Buffalo in Arkansas, as well as larger rivers like the Cheyenne in South Dakota.

Find the book
simply called “Canoe Trip”. I don’t remember the author but his chosen boat is a Penobscot 16. He solos on Maine rivers and lakes.

Brammy, you may recall me saying
that a good friend won the Southeastern Downriver Cruising class, on the Nantahala River, two years in a row paddling an Old Town Penobscot 16. There aren’t a lot of Royalex boats that are fast enough and dry enough to win that class. The Penobscot 16 would still be fairly competitive, many years after it was introduced.

Solo +
Yeah, I know that’s a Wenonah model - but my Penobscot is set up that way. It has a solo seat as well as the regular tandems. I use it both ways and it works well both ways, although it’s a better tandem than solo. It poles pretty well too.

Haven’t done any long canoe trips yet…


– Last Updated: Oct-13-08 6:26 PM EST –

Don't have a Penobscot 16, but I do own a Penobscot 15 in Royalex layup with wood trim. Not the lightest boat in my fleet, but it certainly will haul a load, and is certainly manueverable enough for all the Ozark rivers I do. It feels most at home on long stretches of moving water. Very stable canoe. I wouldn't consider doing more than class 2 in it; too long & not enough rocker. In my opinion, it would be a great fishing platform for a big ol boy who wants to haul everything but the kitchen sink, and do multiple day trips on class 1 & 2.

The wood gunwales are thick & wide, and the deckplate are brass. Kind of unusual looking till you've seen it a few times. The price I paid for it was "right", and it was in near new condition.


Canoe Trip by David Curran.

Sure I’ve soloed in it…back throughout the 90s. I just didn’t take it with me on daily paddles, multiple day trips were fine.


Somewhat off topic
But BigTomBlue paddled his penobscot solo in the 40 miler this year and came in at just a little over 8 hours. Everyone else was in composites. Good paddler great boat.

I’ve paddled mine for 15 years
and have done a couple solo floats of about 150 miles. I’ve used it on easy water like the Missouri Breaks in Montana, BWCA, and Greenbrier in WV, as well as a little more techncal and bigger water on the Elkhorn in Ky and the New in VA and WV. It’s always worked great for me as a multi-day river tripper and a fishing platform. I removed the front seat when I bought it and installed one about 12" further back. This gives the bow paddler extra room for fishing gear when paddling tandem and positions me closer to the center when soloing it backwards.

Although I tend to spend more time floating and fishing from my SOTs on my smaller Ohio streams and doing over-nighters, the Penobscot is my choice for my multi-day adventures.