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What is the Proper Way to Solo Paddle a Tandem Canoe?

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I just got back from Cambodia, and got to see some local paddlers on Ton Le sap, a very large lake in the middle of the country. People live on the lake in stilted houses, so boats are the only means of transportation. Here are some pics of single (ne solo?) paddlers. Most of the boaters are paddling their dugouts from the bow, with a single paddler regardless of the load, as seen in the first pic. The canoes have a narrowed bow section, and the women are usually sitting with knees up. Watching my pilot, sit and switch is the norm (photo 4), with some draws and pries. I could not see any cut, J, etc. variations of the power stroke. It was fun watching though!
 

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While not a tandem (who knows? I wouldn't doubt they could fit another kid in it), here's another variation:sized_0Q7A2728.JPG
 
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Glenn MacGrady

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I just got back from Cambodia . . . .

. . . he casually tosses off, as if just returning from the grocery store. CAMBODIA! The only folks that go there that I know are James Bond, Ethan Hunt and ASMR haircut/massage YouTubers.

Anyway, in this picture . . .

sized_0q7a2662crop-jpg.133247


. . . the boat is so wide that the extreme bow is the best place to get a perfectly vertical stroke, which can be pulled close and parallel to the keel line, without having to worry about the paddle hitting the gunwales and without having to bother much with yaw correction, as would happen in the stern. In addition, the boats are so heavy that they don't go wildly out of trim with a paddler at the end, and the slightly raised stern probably reduces water friction drag by shortening the waterline.
 
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I spent a lot of time with a 15' fiberglass Great Canadian. Its a heavy boat with a shallow v bottom. I paddled it successfully seated on the rear seat, with a rock or a couple milk jugs holding the bow down. I generally healed the boat as much as comfortable and was able to get the paddle blade under the boat. If necessary because of wind or waves would go to my knees a paddle heeled over. Not quite proper Canadian style. I did get to blow my cousins mind a bit this summer "free-styleing" his family's 18' fiber glass White. The lake was glass smooth and my audience had never seen this particular party trick, but the boat had good secondary stability, so I'd like to spend some more time with it.
 
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. . . he casually tosses off, as if just returning from the grocery store. CAMBODIA! The only folks that go there that I know are James Bond, Ethan Hunt and ASMR haircut/massage YouTubers.
Don't forget Joe Biden. He was in Phnom Penh while we were in country.

Knowing of the Khmer Rouge and having seen the movie "The Killing Fields" about its atrocities, and knowing of Nixon's bombing campaign during Viet Nam, it's hard to visit there without deep sorrow for what has happened to the country. They even have a land mine museum (to which I didn't go), as well as another "Killing Fields" museum complete with lots of skulls (didn't go there either--Killing Fields is actually a place). The people were delightful, though.
 
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Try em all. The real answer is what ever you like.
I mostly go on overnight trips from the stern seat.
For day trips bow seat turned around. I often bring a kayak paddle for solo paddling on lakes.
 
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@Glenn MacGrady, in that picture of the Lady; i look over her shoulder to the fellow behind her. Apparently he spends enough time perched on that bow to warrant “upholstering it” !
Maybe it’s a Cambodian bow pudding?

I never left anything in that part of the world that would warrant a return trip!
 
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That little guy doesn't weight much for that big wooden canoe, so the weight distribution isn't so bad. He probably isn't struggling too much.

He's young too. Kids do all kind of goofy stuff, even when they've been taught right. Adults are barely better.
 
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A canoey friend of mine spent time in Guyana.. He did spot some solo canoeing from the bow though the natives paddled and poled from all over the dugout.
 
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Speaking of poling, native poler in Bostwana. The dugout was much narrower than in Cambodia. Having tried it, balance is sort of important! Those are hippopatamuseseseses in the background, always keeping an eye on the boats. They didn't appear to be good swimming partners.sized_0Q7A0636.JPG
 
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That's a nice looking dugout. It probably gets its' stability from its' length, it looks longer than the Cambodian one.

Good for you for being able to try some of these Native boats, something I'd like to do.
 
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. . . he casually tosses off, as if just returning from the grocery store. CAMBODIA! The only folks that go there that I know are James Bond, Ethan Hunt and ASMR haircut/massage YouTubers.

I spent three weeks travelling in Cambodia in 1996 and believe me, I'm not Bond or Hunt, and nor do I have any experience with ASMR. Just a 25-year-old kid that wanted to see the world. It's was an incredible place to travel then, and I'm sure it is now. Unfortunately, I didn't pay much attention to their boats at the time. The people I met there were amongst the most friendly and hospitable of any place I've traveled to. Our visit to Angkor Wat was accentuated by the government tanks driving through the area on their way to finding the last vestiges of the Khmer Rouge that were still milling about in the jungle not too far from Angkor. Periodically, we would hear the guns going off in the distance. It was unnerving and unforgettable.
it's hard to visit there without deep sorrow for what has happened to the country.
I felt the same way then, and it's even more tragic that it is equally felt 27 years later. It'll take generations to get over those atrocities.
 
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