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Decked Canoe Paddle & Compare?

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    Decked Canoe Paddle & Compare?

    It is a shame that Dogbrain and Deerfly’s creations, and others belonging to decked canoe padding CT’ers and friends, are all so geographically distant and widely separated.

    Just among Canoe Tripping contributors, Dogbrain in Montana, Kim in Maine, Doug in New Hampshire, GDWelker and others in my home State of Maryland. JoeWildlife in Missouri. Deerfly and others in Florida. Probably left a few out; no doubt there are a bunch of decked canoes hanging around Michigan from Kruger/Sawyer production.

    A Bring Your Decked Canoe Paddle and Compare, even a lakeside car camper like the early Raystown Solo Canoe Paddle and Compare, would be an interesting gathering, with opportunity to paddle different decked canoes and get outfitting ideas.

    Just throwing an idea out. Not sure of a convenient-to-most State/location, but if it were within an 8 hour drive I’d go and bring at least a couple.

    I can suggest some venues but for decked canoes to shine they must be in their element.. That can be any element but my favorite rendezvous place Lobster Lake in Maine seems a little tame though it has a rep for being as nasty in its own way as its larger neighbor Chesuncook Lake which can be decked canoe nirvana. But it has fewer beachy campsites. It is more than 8 hours to those who suffer from living in Maryland.

    Seems mr McC that you are more centrally located and Assateague is a place I have not paddled at.

    But I think that limiting to decked canoes limits participation.. It would be nice to have a venue that is safe for everyone to swop and play no matter what they bring.


      That would be a lot of fun.



        Assateague would work well. Protected enough for the first two paddle in campsite routes that a decent open boater could make it, but likely to have enough wind to show the merits of decked boats. Needs to be before the last frost, or you will be feeding the ticks and mosquitoes.


          A decked canoe paddle and compare gathering was just a wild idea, one that will most likely never happen, although I remain smitten with the idea.

          Not at Assateague, for a number of reasons. While Chincoteague Bay would be an ideal testing ground the off-season weather is too unpredictable for group trips with a date selected far in advance.

          I have been on some fantastic group trips at Assateague, and some wonderful solo trips. But I have also organized two group trips held on pre-determined dates that simply fell apart due to overly challenging weather, including oppositional 30 mph winds, snow and intense cold. While those trips were certainly most memorable, they were not conducive to doing much comparative paddling.

          We did do a group decked canoe paddle and compare multi-day camper behind Assateague back in 2005, with all of the (then) currently manufactured decked canoes, and were blessed with decent weather and enough wind & white capped wave to make comparisons. We got off-season lucky.

          In another paddle-in-trip complication I know a couple folks willing to bring two (or more) decked canoes, a scenario where a more Raystown-ish car camper “Leave them all on the beach in front of the campsites to test paddle at will” would be easier.

          Provided someone else brought a Monarch I’d bring a couple of our 1970’s European-style decked touring canoe to solo tripper conversions oddities. Probably never going to get another chance to paddle (and sail) a‘71 Old Town Sockeye, a ’77 Hyperform Optima or a ’77 Klepper Kamerade.

          Hell, I might need a trailer. Soloized, the 1st generation Pamlico T145 is the best inexpensive-used, plastic, ruddered, sailing pocket tripper ever made. Laugh all you want, the early P145T is great little decked sailer.

          Just standing around a variety of manufactured and home-built decked canoes on the beach, talking construction and outfitting and etc, would be a blast.

          Originally posted by yellowcanoe View Post
          But I think that limiting to decked canoes limits participation.. It would be nice to have a venue that is safe for everyone to swop and play no matter what they bring.
          I don’t want to be restrictive “You can’t come”, but I do not have the fortitude to recreate a Raystown type event, with a 50-person mass of paddlers, and boats from solos to tandems to sea kayaks to strippers. Those were good times, never to be repeated.

          Although. . . . . Raystown Lake in south-central Pennsylvania would offer everything else; a beach in front of the car camper sites at the Senoia loop, fronting a large, wind protected no-wake cove, off a big, open, often windy and choppy lake.

          Raystown is close enough to Savage River Canoe; Diller might be coerced to show up with a demo Falcon, Osprey, Loon and decked Wee Lassie. I really want to see and paddle some of those Savage boats.

          Not too far from the folks at Jem Watercraft in NC (Northwind), or from Chesapeake Light Craft in Annapolis (Mill Creek, micro-Bootlegger, Wood Duck).

          Hmmm, maybe someone has a Wenonah Canak for folks to try. Or one of Swift’s (discontinued) oversized cockpit rec kayaks, a hull begging for a raised seat and rudder. (What was that rec boat, the Adirondack 13.5?)


            Upper MN, WI, or MI would give you access to Lake Superior under good conditions with lots of inland lakes/rivers if Superior isn't doable.



              I think any canoe gathering is a good idea.

              Decked canoes is probably too small a universe to get good attendance. Non-decked canoeists should be invited so they can try decked canoes to see if they like them.

              My proposal would be more expansive, a rendezvous of OTCAORC's -- other than Canadian-American open recreational canoes. This would include canoes that only a minority of paddlers have: e.g., decked canoes, outrigger canoes (I'd bring mine), pack canoes, racing canoes, endurance-expedition canoes (Texas water safari, Watertribe), war canoes, inflatable canoes, dugout canoes.