(Another) help me find a new solo canoe

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I preferred the Prospector over Keewaydin when i test paddled in 2019, but a lot of folks here suggest a more efficient design is desirable, which I think the Kee is.
 
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I paddled the 14’ Swift Prospector for a trip a couple years ago. I really liked it. Carbon package with foot braces. The keewaydin is more nimble, but less initial stability from what I hear. I am 220 with 50lb pack for reference.

Bob
 
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Grand Rapids, Michigan
I would never recommend anything kayak related like kayak foot braces. ?

In hindsight I wish I would have gotton the carbon footbar instead of the kayak braces but that's what happens when you go against your gut and try to save money. You end up regretting it later on. At least they give something to brace against. That's why I say get what you want the first time so no regrets. Buy once, cry once.
 
G

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Never had a seat back either. Never bothered me, even on a 6 to 8 hr paddle day. Tried one once or twice and didn't like it.

My legs are either feet flat on hull (most), legs crossed at ankles and heels almost under seat, or legs out stretched straight (least).

Bill, you are definitely made of tougher stuff than me, but then most paddlers are; I am an acknowledged canoe comfort wimp. The mere thought of spending 6 to 8 hours in a canoe with my feet flat on the floor, knees raised like I’m using a Squatty Pottie, makes my core muscles ache. I would have a hard time putting any effort into a paddle stroke, especially using a double blade.

I never liked any of the rigid-frame seat backs either, they all poked me somewhere and inferred with torso rotation. The back band is low and flexible and presents no such issues for me.

Locked in” with a foot brace and back band would help with leaning on seated turns. Maybe even help with

I bet that Tranq will turn if you use a bow wedge but there are no guarantees about you staying in the boat.
 
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About 15 years ago I fractured my L1, and only knew it about 10 years ago. Causes pain in sciatic nerve, left leg only. Sporadic and bad to severe. Feet flat most often is comfortable. I hike and it may come on. If I sit, it usually goes away in a minute. Never know when it will reappear - minutes, hours, days, sometimes weeks, but always on guard. But sitting straight with feet flat almost always stops pain, which is like a hot poker throughout my leg, foot to hip.
 
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My sciatic nerve problems only affected my right leg. Some simple core exercises have helped me a lot.

I have to put in another plug for the Keewaydin 15. I've had mine out in the some serious wind and waves and it is not pushed around at all and the efficiency helps you keep making good progress in wind. The maneuverability is good. I think the stability is very close to the Prospector 14 if not equal.
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Joined
Feb 11, 2021
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Clayton NY
So I paddled a Northstar Phoenix and a Swift Keewaydin 14 pack today at Raquette River Outfitters. Great people! I didn't dump in the Phoenix as I half did in the Hornbeck, but still not as stable as I am used to and like. Does not track very well, and I'm a hit and switch paddler. I couldn't switch fast enough. They had one so I tried it.

The Kee was a lot more stable - in very calm water - and tracked well. It was a 14, and I knew going in a 15 would have been more stable. Loved the kevlar thwarts and gunwales. Most important was the swift pack seat is quite tall, and I suspect near same height as the bench in my Tranq. No problem getting in and out, much different than Hornbeck pack seats.

So, I'd like to test a Swift Prospector 14, probably pack. But closest is at an outfitter in Rochester, and I'd feel bad for the other whether I bought from them or RRO. The trip yo Rochester does allow me to test it a Hemlock Peregrine. But I probably could order a Prospector and never look back. And RRO has a regular customer with a 5 year old Prospector - reported to be in immaculate condition - who wants to trade in on a carbon version - but wonder if I should just ante up for exactly what I want. The price does NOT seem irresistible - like 80% of new today.
 

Glenn MacGrady

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wonder if I should just ante up for exactly what I want

I think this is exactly what you should do, Bill, even though I can't quite follow all the Oswegatchie-like twists and turns in this thread.

However, to confirm "exactly what you want," I suggest you do take this two boat test trip:

So, I'd like to test a Swift Prospector 14, probably pack. But closest is at an outfitter in Rochester, and I'd feel bad for the other whether I bought from them or RRO. The trip yo Rochester does allow me to test it a Hemlock Peregrine.

In the end (if there is an end), don't feel guilty about where you buy an expensive canoe. It's your money, supply is limited and wait times on new builds are long -- so grab "exactly what you want" wherever and whenever it's available. Otherwise, you may always wonder: "if only I had gotten the . . . ."
 
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Agree that you should get exactly what you want. Highly recommend trying a Peregrine. I had a Peregrine and would get another in a heartbeat.
 
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"I can't quite follow all the Oswegatchie-like twists and turns in this thread."

40+ years if design and I always looking at every option in exhaustive detail for clients. I think I owe thst much to myself.

Two of those for the Prospector that are major cost items: the Carbon Detachable Yoke - $500!!! - just slightly less than I paid for my Tranquility;. and I never thought I really cared about color - excuse me its colour for Swift -but quite smitten by their Canada Package.

I thought I'd use my Spring Creek ash yoke with bourquin pads.
 
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Just to keep in mind if you are a sit and switch paddler. . The partnership is half you and half the boat. You can make a straight tracking boat turn with a lot of boat heel ( changes the hull shape underwater). And you can take a highly rockered boat and paddle it arrow straight with a good hit and switch stroke where the paddle shaft is always perpendicular to the water and is well ahead of your body.

We used to have to pass "tests" in Freestyle that involved turning no rockered boats like the Tranquility around a buoy and paddling parallel to a buoy line with a WildFire or similar with 2.5 inches of fore rocker and the same in the stern with a bent shaft sit and switch. Yaw of more than five degrees was frowned on.

Its all about the learning journey,

the carbon detachable yoke.. barter for it. A sheet of plywood ought to do.
 
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Yellowcanoe - I really appreciate your advice but I just don't lean well, and work hard to stay upright. I just don't think my balance can be improved at my age I feel I can turn better in Prospector than Tranq and track well enough at least with double blade.

So the used one became more appealing with more data. 2018, reported in immaculate condition, includes carbon yoke and carbon everything and in range of 30% below the new price. It isn't the layup with basalt/innegra but is of course 4 pounds lighter.

What to do.
 
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Yellowcanoe - I really appreciate your advice but I just don't lean well, and work hard to stay upright. I just don't think my balance can be improved at my age I feel I can turn better in Prospector than Tranq and track well enough at least with double blade.

So the used one became more appealing with more data. 2018, reported in immaculate condition, includes carbon yoke and carbon everything and in range of 30% below the new price. It isn't the layup with basalt/innegra but is of course 4 pounds lighter.

What to do.

No No (Frantically waving hands;)) You don't lean. the boat does. Butt cheek pressure on one side will accomplish this. You of course want to stay with your torso parallel to the tall white pine tree trunk!

Prospectors are river boats historically meant to turn well on rivers.. Tranq has a different background. Lakes are a challenge for Prospectors but you can co exist with using a double blade..A gain well forward . Don't bring the blades too far back .. you don' t want sweeps.

Balance is the hardest thing to work on. I am trying to stand on one foot for thirty seconds.. One foot works the other doesn't. And hell where did this fear of falling come from?
 
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Jun 22, 2017
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What to do.

Let me help. You have access to a Swift Prospector 14 at around 30% below list price? Buy it for sure. It's a fine boat and you know that you like it. It's exceptionally stable with high capacity for a 14 footer and pretty much kills the others on your list. It turns way better than your Tranq with just a slight lean....seems ideal for you. It has only 1 inch of rocker so much less than most traditional Prospectors. Super friendly, comfy and versatile boat. All Swift lay-ups are meant to be used. Get it and see if you can wear it out.
 
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I started this in February and hoped I'd have it for next season. All my career projects usually lasted between 3 snd 10 years, so this seems fast. I think if the used Prospector is as reported I'll go for it.

I appreciate the help.
 
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I don't know...4 months later he still has no real direction....?

maybe the hunt is half the fun. Now I am not accusing Bill of being anything but a guy but most women kinda like the hunt( I don't). The trouble is in the hunt they "kill" everything they are remotely interested in then return almost all of it so any similarity ends there

comments written with a smile :)

Bill go to the Western PA Rendezvous to add to the huntable game.. Yes its about seven hours from you. But canoeheads travel that far routinely.

Or in 2022 go over to Paul Smiths College for the Adirondack Canoeing Symposium.. I should say also go no matter what boat you have.
 
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Jun 22, 2017
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If it helps I'll mention that the Peregrine doesn't turn that well so it's almost certainly not the best choice for Bill even though I like the boat.
 
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Jun 22, 2017
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Congratulations Bill. Swift makes very fine boats and that Prospector is a special canoe.
 
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