What was your first boat?

I just ordered my eleventh boat. Thirteenth, if you include boats other than canoes and kayaks.
I’ve had more than I thought. Took me a while to remember them all.
When I was in high school, my dad bought a couple of aluminum canoes, but I’m only counting ones I bought myself.
My first boat was an Old Town Discovery 174. A real freighter. Weighed a ton but could carry a ton. Almost indestructible. Went on a lot of trips in that canoe.
I’m a little sorry I sold that boat.
What was your first boat?

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Our first one is an ‘89 Mohawk 16’ royalex canoe. We just bought it a few months ago.

First boat was a well used Blue Hole OCA tandem whitewater canoe. The Royalex hull had dents, deep scratches, and the starboard gunwale was bent but it was a canoe and got me through Class II and III whitewater.

Fond memories but I can’t say I miss that boat. To be fair to the canoe, I had it set up for solo white water. Probably was a decent tandem WW canoe. But it was very heavy and I moved on to a true solo WW canoe.

First new canoe was a Wenonah Odyssey Kevlar cross-rib. Still own (and use) that canoe.

I was on a trip with someone that had a Blue Hole.
It was pretty highly regarded while in production.

(I moved these comments about the OCA to my original post.)

a 1969 Grumman bathtub. It was literally that … 15 feet long. We tripped in the Boundary Waters etc for 20 years with it and then decided it was too small for more than five day trips and heck it was gaining weight ( or something like that).

Then the craziness started…

Wenonah Jensen 18 ordered from an appliance shop in Ann Arbor. Yellow gel-coat, Cross-Rib layup with a layer of Kevlar. Talked a buddy into going haves on it with me. It lived with me for a good while and then in 1990 went with him to Missouri where, as I heard, it was loaned to some people who stuffed it into a log jam & broke it.

When the Jensen when with Martin in '90 Ruth & I had just married. We used our wedding money to buy a Sawyer Cruiser that we still have.

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A 12’ Perception Acadia ; a rec kayak. Did some paddling around the ICW . Realized quickly that 12’ is a little boat.

I’m also new to Paddle boating and this spring I bought a used OT Guide 147 from a neighbor when taking a walk. I asked him how he liked it and I was thinking of a canoe and he said he bought it the year before from a friend and never had it in the water.

I wanted a solo and spent a couple months tearing it apart and making it into what I wanted by trial and error.

I’m almost 66 and you other thread hit a cord with me you titled “The last boat you might buy” I like this boat enough and this could well be my first and last paddle boat. I will never wear it out that’s for sure. It lets me fish. It lets me enjoy our river and local lakes. Many here I notice are focused on the equipment but fondly remember the experiences when maybe the equipment wasn’t the best.

I’m trying hard on just enjoying my first and maybe last boat. :canoe:

First solo kayak: Seaward Endeavour
The cockpit was larger than an ocean cockpit, but not by much. Someone called it a ‘slalom’ cockpit. In any case, the cockpit was too small to exit/entry for my somewhat inflexible back so I sold it. That led to a long series of kayaks, the neverending story. Currently I have a Valley 17.3 Étaín.

Old Town 158 Discovery, used from an outfitter. Heavy and worn. Replaced it with an OT Camper.

In 1999 I ordered (2) Wilderness Systems Cape Hatteras kayaks. They turned out to be solid beginner boats and we got a lot of use out of them.

First paddle craft was a 13.5 foot Perception America. Already had a Jon boat, 12 footer.

A 1930’s Old Town Guide I bought for $15.00 in 1959 when I was 12 yera old. Still have it.


First ones l got regular use of were a big old wooden “war” canoe and the occasional rowboat. First family boat was an open motored 14 footer my father built.
First kayaks were Swifties where we rented in the summer.
First owned boat were a pair of Dagger Cypresses, when it became apparent the Swifties would not go where me and my husband wanted. First sea kayak was a CD Squall when we realized the same was true of the Cypresses.

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First personal boat was in 1978, a used styrofoam Sea Snark sailboat with the Kool cigarettes logo on the sail (the tobacco companies used to have coupons in the packs that smokers could use to buy branded outdoor gear - I got my first backpacking tent, a weird little flat-roofed Coleman, by picking up discarded butt packs in the parking lot of the convenience store where I worked during college.). It had a wooden rudder and daggerboard and was so small and light I could carry it on the cheap ski rack on my 1978 Datsun B210. Lots of fun sailing it solo or with a friend on local lakes. Paid $50 for it and sold it 20 years later for $75.

First paddle craft was a new Feathercraft Kahuna folding kayak in 2002. Had learned of this type of boat when I met a guy who took his vintage Klepper tandem to Alaska with his grown son every year and I loved the idea of a light and portable boat. I lived in West Michigan at the time, 5 minutes from Reeds Lakes in East Grand Rapids and 40 minutes from Lake Michigan — local dealer had the Kahuna on display and I had a new Mastercard burning a hole in my pocket. To this day that was the most I have spent on any boat ($3300). I had many great trips with that kayak in the Great Lakes, along the Connecticut coast and lakes and rivers of PA, NY, WV and Ontario before selling it for $1800 in 2009 to buy a longer and faster Feathercraft Wisper.

Guess I should add that I just bought my 4th Feathercraft 3 days ago, a vintage Java for $650 that is on its way by Fedex from NC.


I consider $3300 a lot for a boat in 2021. That was a ton of money in 2002.

That’s amazing, SoloBill. Is it worth a lot now?

One of the boats I’ve owned was a Dagger Legend canoe.
I recently found out it is considered one of the best wilderness tripping canoes ever made.
I guess I should have kept it.

Bought a used Necky Looksha 17ft for $650 in 1995ish . Rotomold, no rudder or skeg. Sold it in 2011 for $600 & many times since I wish I had not sold it. Learned lots in that old kayak and lucky to have lived through some of the adventures. Glad I discovered British style sea kayaks as paddling became much easier.

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