Synergy 12- casual floating

So I think I have the fishing side of my needs nailed down to a Mad River Synergy 12. My question for you guys is this: When not fishing and wanting to just float, do you think this hybrid will still be pretty comfortable handling up to class II or not?

Does anyone know if they make a 3 piece spray skirt for this??


at how good of a class II paddler you are! The boat will handle it. not a perfect whitewater vessel BUT capable as many canoes are.

there is a skirt arangement for her that should keep splash outta the boat.

hope this helps

steve (Synergy family design team member)

Anyone else have experience with this boat?

one boat I want
one of these days.

I had a chance to paddle it in some pretty good winds and waves I believe it was on the folly river in Charleston. surfed great, incredibly stable, a hoot to maneuver around and play with.

yep… one of these days…


I haven’t paddled it
but I also think it’s an interesting boat and I look forward to trying it. I want to try the 14 also - looks like it would be good for camping trips although it might be a bit too much boat for me.

it’s a pretty nimble vessel (in the water) even the 14. carrying 'em solo is a PITA. can you say wheels? :wink:


I’ve watched complete novices do
very well in recreation kayaks through the class 2 rapids of the Broad River NE of Athens, GA. As a whitewater snob, I somewhat hate to admit it, but as long as the class 2 rapids aren’t too closely packed together (as on the Nantahala), recreational kayaks can do OK.

I have wheels (a cart)
Hmmmm… you’ve got me thinking about that Synergy 14 again. I saw one “in person” and it just seemed so BIG. I do like the look of it, though. It seems to have a bit of rocker (right?) and it looks like it would be the perfect boat for primitive camping.

The Synergy profile looks a lot
like the Tarpon. How is it different?

Tarpon has scales.

not even
look again.

Tarpon- SOT

Synergy- SINC

lower center of gravity, much different shape


flatpick, are you saying
the Synergy has a lower center of gravity? I can’t say as I’ve never paddled a Synergy (but have paddled a Tarpon) and I’m surprised by your statement.

I thought canoes had a higher center of gravity than most kayaks, including SOT’s. No? Please say more about this. Thanks.


yes the synergy has a much lower COG that a SOT. no scupper holes, no drainage, seat can sit much lower.

in the synargy you are sitting at the same level as you are in any SINK.

Traditional canoes, where you sit high on a seat attached to the gunnel YES, jhave a much higher COG, but there is a different class of ‘canoe’ out there where you sit lower in the boat. The Rob Roy was one of the first in this catagory.

Give one a try if you can. they’re a hoot!!!


the synergy
seems to be an excellent boat. It is a SOT, because it does not have a cockpit to sit into. It is deeper than a traditional SOT, almost like a hybrid canoe/yak. You sit in it like a sot, but it is deeper. I have not paddled one, but I did sit in one and love the design. I just wish it held more weight as I am 400#+.

try the 14
it should hold ya.

if not the New style WS ‘Ride’ SOT will!

good luck


thanks for the explanation
I hope they have a Synergy at some of the demos around here in the spring. I’d love to try one.

which ones?
I can see if I can pull some strings and make sure one shows up…maybe?


Cincinnati area (Ohio)
Not sure who deals in Mad River products here, but I’m pretty sure D&D Outfitters does. Also possibly Nature Outfitters (Milford, OH).

Some other outfitters not too far - Paddle Power Boat Shop in Chillicothe, OH, Whitewater Warehouse in Dayton, Canoe Kentucky (near Frankfort, I think) and that’s all I can think of right now.

I could get to Columbus or Lexington or Louisville easily enough if you have any reps there.

Is there-
a Bass Pro nearby? I know they carry them- that is how I stumbled on it myself. Also another local dealer here in Middle TN that has them is REI

Yes, there’s a Bass Pro
but I don’t think I’ve ever been there. Do they let you demo? Hmmm… something for me to check out.