Wenonah Jensen 17 vs Escape

Considering these two for rec. racing. Should they be about equally fast? Shear is 20.5 13.5 17 inches front to rear for the Escape and 17 12.5 16 for the Jensen. I’m favoring the Escape for performance in possible rougher conditions but will the depth be a problem in the wind? I know everything’s a tradeoff but any thoughts on which would be better all around? Thanks.

Very Close
Choosing between these two for racing is a hard pick. So long as the rules where you race allow 17’6" either will be very competitive. Some places cut off rec class at 17’even.

You are right about the Escape having an advantage in rough water. Wave height is what limits when you can paddle the Jensen. If the races include pro-boats and competition cruisers, the Jensen is fine; the race will be called off because of the cruisers and pro-boats before its too rough for the Jensen. The Escape can be paddled hard in waves where you will have to hold back with the Jensen.

In the tight stuff the Jensen has a slight edge, and in the wind a light team will fight the Escape more. Two guys at 200# or over, not so bad, two guys at 140# might wish they were in a Jensen.

I’ve had a 17’Jensen since 2001 and have raced and tripped with it over a thousand miles. Had the Escape existed when i bought the Jensen, I probably would own an Escape instead.


Are you talking solo or tandem racing
when I bought my Jensen 17 it was billed as the only canoe that was made for both solo and tandem


At 5’-9" I gave up on the solo, but my wife and I have won a gang of medals in it in tandem races.

It was also billed as the fastest recreation canoe, but unfortunately as the paddler above mentioned different races classify it in different classes.

At the Adarondak 90 miler we have to go in with the 18 footers.

For what it is worth, we were out training in it today for an upcoming race and averaged right at 5.1 for eight miles.( we are what you would call “grand , grand masters”)

You also have to figure what materials you will be getting in your boat.

The Jensen 17 comes in several models.

Mine is their kevlar ultralight at 39 pounds.

Good luck on your decision.



Forgot the weight factor
In most of our races in New York, they define recreatiional class as 17’6" maximum length and 55# minimum weight.

Jack L’s 17’ Jensen in UL Kevlar has to go in Stock Class cause he is under the 55#. Mine is core-stiffened Tuffweave at 56# and can run Rec Class.

Minimum weight was put in the specs for the portage sections, big advantage carrying a 37# canoe vs a 56# canoe, or an 80# canoe, when the carry is over a mile.j

Hey Bill
We are planning on doing the 90 this year.

Red Cross Randy and his lovely wife Pat said they would “pit” for us.

Now all we have to do is talk Brian into leaving the lights on for us!



Great Jack
The PlaidPaddlers will be going in C-4 again this year. #3 Son and his new Canadian Girlfriend will be trying to enter my Jensen in C-2Rec Mixed Open.

Hopefully our Pitcrew will include the equally famous OMS, Patmandu, Alex Tahou, and chef Hilary Ross.

This is the 25th Adirondack Classic so it will be interesting to see what special touches Brian puts on the race this year.