Some weight questions

I was just looking at some of the pictures of last years Adirondack 90 miler that Red Cross Randy was so kind to take and give to us, and was wondering about the weights of the guide boats and the war canoes.

Does anyone know their weights ?

Thinking of some of those miserable carries, I don’t think the war canoes would be too bad with the gang of paddlers that are available, but it must be a hard task to carry those guide boats!



68 pounds

Good info - thanks
I didn’t even know some were built out of modern laminate materials.

Most of the ones that I have seen have been wooden and are a pride and joy to the folks that built them.



Some of the old ones were very light too

– Last Updated: Jun-30-08 1:48 PM EST –

There was a 100-year-old guide-boat for sale on e-bay a few years ago which had exactly the same dimensions as my modern composite one. Mine was advertised as weighing 65 pounds, but as Angstrom points out, they now say that this boat is 68 pounds (the only change I know of is the addition of some very light-weight skid plates at both ends, and that's hardly enough extra weight to measure, so there's some other reason for the change). I STILL haven't gotten around to weighing mine, but it's safe to say it's somewhere between 65 and 70 pounds. Anyway, the old wooden version on e-bay supposedly weighed about 60 pounds. Think about what a miracle of building prowess it took to accomplish that, especially since those old boats had a coat of primer and one or two coats of paint inside and out, not to mention hundreds of steel screws and well over a thousand copper tacks.

What’s a “guide boat”?
I’m not sure what qualifies as a guide boat, but the 20 footer I have, fiberglass over wood, circa 1970, comes in a tad under 100 pounds as it is configured today.


That might be a guide canoe.
This is just a guess, but at 20 feet long, it seems likely that it’s an over-sized “guide canoe”, of the type once used to haul loads of gear to a base camp back in the boondocks.

A guide-boat only looks like a canoe to a completely unexperienced person. The cross-sectional shape is very different from that of a canoe, and the method of construction of the old-time boats has no similarity at all to the construction of canoes built during the same time period.

Look at that website that site Angstrom provided above and then look at some of the other topics there, and you’ll get some idea of what an Adirondack guide-boat is (as opposed to a Green River guide boat which is something else entirely), and what they were originally used for.

The short version of the story is that 100 years ago and more, before there were many roads in the Adirondack Mountains and before the days of outboard motors, rich city folks would take vacations there and hire a guide to take them out hunting and fishing. The best way to travel in many parts of that region is by boat. The guide rowed the boat and on long trips, carried it between lakes. Since the guide did ALL the hard work, the boat had to be able to cover long distances with minimal effort and had to be light enough for one person to carry easily. The design was dictated entirely by function, not comfort, which is one reason a lot of modern-day folks find themselves too big-bellied and unflexible in the hamstrings to sit in such a low-profile boat and still have the working room they need to handle the oars. If you can comfortably spend the day in one though, they are marvelous fun when used for the things they do well.

From my little experience with …
guide boats in the Great River Race on the North River south of Boston, and in the adirondack 90 miler, in my estimation their owners, (paddlers) are real purists.

They take pride in building them and paddling them, and I put them in the same catagory as C-1 racing paddlers which are truly dedicated to this wonderful passtime.



Not a guideboat
This boat is a canoe.

The War canoe
plaidpaddler floated a few years back was 105 lbs. Most of the other war canoes claimed to be around 125-175. If I could get a barn I think I could build one at around 90-100 lbs that would move like a greased snake on flat water. It would probobly need a better stern man then me to get the most out of it though…

Hey; where are you sitting in…
the Minn 4 ?



very large strong paddlers will do it.

Bow Wow
It depends on his audition speed and ability to pull the bow around in Brown’s Tract. And if he paddles bow how many of us can hear him sing his Grateful Dead songs?


My big fear is :
if either of our boats gets close together, both Red Cross Randy and Bald Paddler will be wanting to get in the same boat together since they have been tandem paddling partners for many moons, and we might have to hog tie one or the other to keep them from jumping.




Jack, check this out.

take a look at these. this is the same guy I made my SOF with.

BTW the skin boat fell 11’ from the rack in my garage onto various scary items on the floor (lawnmower, extension ladder up on edge etc.) with no damage to the skin. Sadly it did break the coaming a bit, but I can fix that with some glue.