What canoe is short enough to be a good swamp boat and still do OK on a river? Swamp boat= short, relatively narrow, capable of making right turns and worse in very tight spots.
It depends on what you expect the boat to do on a river. As far as relatively short, maneuverable boats are concerned, there are a few that come to mind. The Mad River Freedom Solo is a lot of fun and is one that everyone seems to like. It would be high up on my short list. The Mohawk Odyssey is pretty maneuverable and is good for a paddler who wants a solid, predicatable boat, and doesn’t mind sacrificing some speed. The Bell Yellowstone Solo is a fun boat that combines good maneuverability with decent speed, but feels a bit small to a lot of larger paddlers. The Bell Flashfire and Wildfire would both do a good job. The Wenonah Argosy looks like a possibility if you don’t mind going over 14’, although I haven’t paddled it. The Millbrook Flashback is only 13’ and should be highly maneuverable, but it’s also one I haven’t paddled. If you don’t mind going up to 15’, the Swift Osprey is a sweet boat and would be great on the river. It’s one of my favorite all-around boats. The Merrimack Baboosic would be another excellent choice.
If you are choosing for yourself, you’ll want to ask yourself how small you can go and still feel comfortable. 14’should be okay depending on which boat you go with. 13’ might be a bit on the small side for you, although again it would just depend on what you are comfortable with.
If you aren’t sure what to get, buy one of each and send the rejects my way
You didn’t say if you want solo or
If Solo a Wenonah Sandpiper would be perfect.
Thanks guys. Yes, solo.A tandem boat
does not do well in the swamp.
Ya need 2 boats
I paddle the Bell Wildfire RX (predacessor of the Yellowstone) for most of my river and flat water stuff. When things get really snaky the Old Town Pack at 12’ is my boat of choice. It’s narrowed 2" which kills a bit of the rocker but I can still scull it 5’ sideways in a boat length and a draw or pry will turn it in it’s own length. The wildfire can be made to do these things too but the responsiveness of the Pack is amazing. That same responsiveness makes it a real dog on flatwater.
What swamp are you talking about?
I used my tandem OT disco 158 in the Okefeenokee Swamp the Everglades and many of the NC and SC coastal swamps for years.
you have the perfect Swamp boat, the T-160… i havent found a swamp yet that could stop mine…
This was the Edisto River swamp
and in places we lost the channel. I was not exaggerating about making 90 deg turns, not curves, every few feet, often with a current.Maybe a Tarpon 120.
if you are using this excuse to justify another boat go for it!! L If anybody can pull it off it would be you…
Swedge , I already have management
approval. I just need to find the boat.
I use a Chapman Coppermouth pirogue for swamp and marsh work. Less than $400 and very nimble, if a "little" tippy. ;) It's not much of a river craft if you have even a hint of Class II water though and capacity is limited. Mine mainly gets me and the decoys out to my favorite duck hunting spots.
Another Vote For Pirogue
The flat hull allows it to turn on a dime, and very, very shallow draft.
Um, Dagger Dynamo
I have been using my Dagger Dynamo to explore the swamps around here. It’s my WW boat. It does exactly what I need in that it is very lightweight and often I am carrying it 1/2 mile or so to the put-in, plus minimal gear and my cameras in drybags.
The goal for me is to be able to explore these swamps and take pictures. The short length (about 7 feet?) and flat bottom of the boat are perfect for in & out of grass tussocks. Granted, thse are not extensive swamps, but the boat is doing EXACTLY what I need it to do - get me and the cameras in there.
Of course should there suddenly be an attack of whitewater I’d have a nice surfing experience, too.
you going to sell the 160? I got dibs!!!
Swedge , you already have a 160.
Why do you want another? $450.
I paddle a Swift Osprey in Everglades swamps as well as very twisty rivers including the Loxahatchee here in South Florida. It is my all time favorite solo. I have paddled a Bell Merlin II as well as a MR Independence, but I prefer the outstanding secondary stability of the Osprey.
What part of the edisto are we talking about. If I recall RedCross Randy and I did alright in an eighteen and a half foot stock touring boat the last time we paddled together against a bunch of shorter solo’s and a mad river tandem with a tall gentaleman in it…
How about 250? You KNOW you need the space for the NEW boat… I need TWO, one for Diane. Just like our matching QCCs
Yeah but you guys KNOW how to paddle!!! L Really Its just Strings way of getting a new boat, it usually happens 2 or 3 times a year. but usually its for something faster… Like I said the T-160 is a great swamp boat that doesn’t give up anything on flat water. Unless you are comparing it to QCC’s… I have used it in 4 holes when the water was LOW and it worked great. Of course at low water I ran out of floatable water before I could get to far.
Knock it off Swedge! You never
know when my wife might be lurking.
$250? In your dreams.
Baldpaddler, Mike is right. We were in a place you would never know existed if you didn't have a local guide. We paddled down the river and ducked , literally , into a narrow creek that opened into a whole 'nuther world of bald cypress giants. And there is no doubt that you guys are 10X the tandem paddlers Waterbuffy and I are, but this would still have been a challenge where we lost the channel.