Stern heavy Mad River Monarch

My Mad River Monarch is quite stern heavy when carrying on my shoulders with the integrated seat portage yoke.

Adding a 1 liter water bottle to the bow of the boat had no appreciable effect on making the stern feel lighter.

The portage yoke position doesn’t appear to be alterable, so does anyone have any experience with this and have a proven solution? I don’t really want to strap a 10 lb weight onto the bow to balance it out while carrying it - it already weighs 54 lbs.

Kayamedic, what did you do for yours? My recollection is that yours felt pretty much exactly the same way when on my shoulders.

The on-the-water balance/trim seems fine.

I hire a sherpa
who is happy to balance the seat on his head.

I know thats not what you were looking for.

But my solo detachable yoke for a canoe fits the Monarch pretty well from eyeballing it from the outside. Of course the last sentence would be meaningful if I mounted it at the center point and then saw if my head fit with the yoke on my shoulders or if I would still be getting a headache.

I probably have a solo or kayak yoke
that would fit, but the Monarch seat would be in the way, unless I devised a way to hold it out of the way while carrying with another yoke.

I’ll figure something out. It’s a bummer that mine isn’t one of the perfectly balanced Monarchs that I’ve read about.

Sorry, Dave
No help, but my Monarch didn’t seem to be unbalanced?

I use bow and stern lines with a quick release buckle in the middle to alter trim on all my other solos.

Maybe try putting the Monarch on and using the same method . Eliminates weight and uses your pulling power magnified.

one paracord line to the bow. The other to the stern… Buckle and mount the Monarch on you. Use the quick release buckle FIRST to detach the two halves before putting it down.

Getty it on and off the shoulders when
stern heavy is the hardest part. Carrying is easier than mount and dismount.

yes… and you really don’t want to grind
the rudder and its assembly into the ground. Mine had enough of an unhappy encounter with a palm tree trunk

How about…

– Last Updated: Oct-09-15 11:09 PM EST –

How about buying yourself a cart.........

There is also the distinct possiibility that the Monarch is NOT unbalanced, but you ARE. I read somewhere that being about a half bubble off center is a genetic trait in a lot of over fed leaping gnomes from Illinois.

Not that there is anything wrong with being an overfed leaping gnome. That's a lot better than being an over fed, long haired, leaping gnome. They really have some issues..........

Another option would be to bring Monarcah to the Rendezvous. I'll bring my chainsaw, and quickly resolve weight issue.


I can’t leap, am long haired and over
fed, but don’t perceive myself as a gnome. I’ll take your suggestions under advisement. Thanks/

A cart is not always possible to use
sometimes on portages feet are better.

Of course I cart the darn thing when I can… but carts do not work on rockweed covered rocks at low tide.

I have no idea what that boat…

– Last Updated: Oct-10-15 11:33 AM EST –

looks like or the seat/yoke looks like, but there is no way in hell that I would add a bottle of water or any weight to make it balance for portaging.

Make a removable yoke that can be installed easily at the balance point.

I have done it for kayaks and canoes and it is relatively easy,

If you want I'll e-mail you a picture

Jack L

It’s a Unique Seat, Jack
Seat on one side, flips to yoke on the other. If you look closely, you can see the yoke in the picture. Actually, mine worked very well. I’m wondering if there was some repair that may have made that stem “Heavy?”

Wow, that is a neat looking boat !
Is it classified as a kayak or a canoe ?

Thanks for enlightening me !

Jack L

Its a sea canoe
a hybrid. The Monarch has several levels of seat all in the same seat. Its got grooves in the heavy kevlar ( multi layer!) so you can sit pretty high like a tractor seated canoe or low like a kayak

Its deep though and its coaming discourages double blading… Its a knuckle rapper.

For me far more comfortable to use a bent shaft canoe paddle.

The front deck sheds water well and I do recommend a spray skirt for it . I have the same and I don’t have to use it all the time, whereas my hubby in a kayak does. He is lower.

Windage of course is a little more.

Reinhard Zollitsch has a marvelous sea canoe website. He has a Sea Wind… an evolution of the Monarch Jack you might like this article… He started ocean canoeing in a Jensen

I Felt it Was a Canoe With a Deck

– Last Updated: Oct-12-15 11:23 AM EST –

I believe that's how the designer, Verlen Kruger, classified it also? Loved the boat and if I could sit in a canoe/kayak more than 10 minutes I'd have never sold mine to Joewildlife. Like Kim, I too used a single blade, although I recall trying a double and, as Kim said, the coaming made it unsatisfactory. Due to the rudder, you can paddle on one side without the need to switch until you need some rest on one side. 48" bent worked for me in this boat.

If I'm not mistaken, Verlen first designed the Sawyer Loon, then the Mad River Monarch, then lastly decided "If you want a job done right....." and designed his Kruger?

For short carries…
moving the seat to the lowest position and hoisting the boat up to my left shoulder and carrying it on it’s side, rather than using the portage yoke was much easier and comfortable - I could pick it up and carry it at it’s balance point.

With the seat it it’s lowest position, I could also clamp a different portage yoke on the coaming with a few modifications.