wenonah itasca

Wenonah does not give out carrying capacity on their canoes. I was wondering if anyone had any experience or knowledge of the capacity in pounds of the Itasca. Thank you.

Do you want real life figures, or
do you want the BS 6" freeboard method MR, OT, and many other companies use?

I have often admired the Itasca, but never paddled one. I would guess it could carry 600 to 650 pounds of paddlers and gear without degrading its lake performance. If you were trying to paddle it on a Minnesota river with occasional shoals, like the St. Croix, I would not take more than 550 pounds to avoid dragging and to preserve maneuvering ability. The Itasca has some rocker, more than, say, the MN II.

My best guess
is 650-700. We have the slightly smaller Odyssey. That carries 600 lbs.

A warning. Neither boat is meant to be paddled with just paddlers and no gear. Both are specialty boats. The Itasca perhaps more so with its extreme pinched ends.

My friend and I are attempting to paddle from our home town in Saint Joseph IL to the Gulf of Mexico. We are raising funds to buy our boy scout troop some badly needed canoes. So real life figures are what I am looking for. We have already completed around 400 miles. We did the prior trip in sea kayaks and just bought a Itasca for the last part. Whatever weight is recommended I will definitely be pushing on the high end. We are already 430 pounds with just body weight! Thank you for your input.

Check out Clipper’s site

– Last Updated: Nov-12-12 12:16 PM EST –

I agree the 4" or 6" freeboard figures aren't that useful, but Clipper publishes the displacement at each inch, which is nice for comparison. I don't think the Itasca is in the same class as the Mackenzie, but I bet it would be comparable to the Sea Clipper in terms of volume (Wenonah's can be tricky with their razor-sharp entries that add waterline but not much volume).


My best guess would be that you could expect a maximum displacement of around 1400lbs, with about half of that being a comfortable/manageable load. A 17' Prospector can hold 600 pretty well, so I expect the Itasca could do this or a little more in fine style.

my test paddle
I never paddled one loaded. I test paddled one once with a friend, and 135 lbs of dog (ok, two dogs). My friend and I were both about 240 lbs each at the time, and I don’t think the canoe knew we were there.