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PostPosted: December 28th, 2020, 7:33 am 
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Location: Geraldton, Ontario Can
I know this is an old thread, but what river in Northern Ontario are you going to spend a month on? Be hard pressed to think of many that would take that long, unless you were going to paddle the length of the Albany or something. The osprey was my primary tripping canoe for many years, at your weight, it should be fine for a month if you pack conservatively.


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PostPosted: December 28th, 2020, 8:11 am 
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Find a Swift Raven. Heavy but tough in the RX layup. It is a mack truck but still a solo


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PostPosted: December 28th, 2020, 8:46 am 
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Joined: March 12th, 2018, 8:18 am
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My raven is still for sale


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PostPosted: December 28th, 2020, 11:41 am 
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Joined: August 7th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Duluth, MN
RHaslam wrote:
I know this is an old thread, but what river in Northern Ontario are you going to spend a month on? Be hard pressed to think of many that would take that long, unless you were going to paddle the length of the Albany or something. The osprey was my primary tripping canoe for many years, at your weight, it should be fine for a month if you pack conservatively.


Planning on upper Albany, and then cutting over to the Attawapiskat.


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PostPosted: December 28th, 2020, 12:00 pm 
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Location: Geraldton, Ontario Can
ya, osprey might be a bit small for that, some big lakes on that trip. Too bad they never made the raven in kevlar, that would have been the ideal canoe.


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PostPosted: December 29th, 2020, 11:44 am 
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Location: Duluth, MN
Been considering a Hemlock SRT.


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PostPosted: January 11th, 2021, 6:51 pm 
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Joined: April 14th, 2013, 9:49 am
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I have soloed the nova craft Prospector 16 and Bob Special and both are nice. Depending on your gear weight the bob might be a little small but the prospector 15 or 16 would be decent.


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PostPosted: March 8th, 2021, 8:36 pm 
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Joined: February 26th, 2021, 7:25 pm
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I'd like to find a super lightweight canoe that can handle anything and make it across the country. Solo. Using kayak paddles.

Read about these "swift" "packboats". But I'm unsure about them.

I thought it might be interesting to bring along a bicycle like the "Paratrooper", folds up and supposedly a good bike, along with a trailer to pull the boat and cargo through highways or roadways and paths.

Wanted something that could carry that and some more equipment and food and such.


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PostPosted: November 22nd, 2021, 11:23 pm 
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Joined: August 7th, 2002, 7:00 pm
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Location: Duluth, MN
I'm still pondering this question. And one thing I keep coming back to is comfort vs. efficiency. The SRT is intriguing. I like (at least on paper--never paddled one) that it's an efficient hull, but it has the depth, etc. to swallow up a lot of gear. Having said that, I've also heard that the efficiency comes at the cost to initial stability. Now I kneel more or less all the time, with short breaks to work out the kinks, so in that sense the SRT is right up my alley.

On the other hand, comfort is important on long trips. It's nice to be able to take off your rainpants without dumping the canoe, for example, so on some level it would be nice to have a wider, more comfortable/stable canoe, or at least find a canoe that splits the difference--reasonably efficient and yet 'comfortable.'

Then again, with increased efficiency, one could spend less time on the water overall....round I round I go. Anyway, interested to hear other thoughts about the sweet spot of comfort vs efficiency for a longer solo. And I'm interested in hearing more thoughts about the SRT, if others have them. It seems as though it's designed for my intended purpose in mind, but being from MN I never see them in these parts.


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 8:43 am 
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Joined: January 3rd, 2017, 1:48 pm
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Location: St. Catharines, Ontario
What is it that sets apart the SRT for you from say something more locally available that seems to fill the same niche like a Northstar Phoenix or Northwind Solo?


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 10:42 am 
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Joined: January 8th, 2007, 9:56 pm
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Location: Wisconsin
tom-o:

I have a Hemlock SRT as well as a Novacraft Supernova and a Bell Yellowstone Solo. Note, I've paddled the Upper Albany (solo), Otoskwin (tandem), and Pipestone (tandem), so I'm familiar with what the rivers are like in the area you are interested in. If I were to paddle the Upper Albany/Attawapiskat, I'd be torn between taking the SRT or the Supernova.

I considered purchasing a Northstar Phoenix in IXP instead of the SRT. But when I put the Phoenix side-by-side with my Yellowstone Solo, the hull shapes were virtually indistinguishable (the only difference being that the Phoenix is 6" longer). I know from experience that the Yellowstone Solo does not have enough volume to serve as a river tripping canoe for me. It's just way too wet of a ride in any waves/rapids for me. But then I outweigh you by 40-50 lbs, so perhaps a Phoenix could work for you, but it was a non-starter for me.

I purchased the SRT in March 2020 (just at the start of the pandemic), so I haven't had a chance to paddle it yet on a longer expedition like you're contemplating. But I have paddled it on several 4-5 day outings in northern Wisconsin and the U.P. of Michigan. It sheds waves and carries a load well (as does the Supernova).

Both the SRT and the Supernova have a fairly rounded cross-section, so can feel a little tippy when unladen. But I feel primary stability of either is OK when carrying a load. Secondary stability on both is excellent.

The SRT is quite a bit narrower than the Supernova. As such, it's easier to paddle with an efficient vertical stroke. The SRT also weighs 20lbs less than my old royalex Supernova, so it's way more pleasant to portage.

I've had the Supernova for years, so I'm very used to the way it handles. I know how it handles entering and exiting eddies. There are no surprises.

The SRT handles like no other boat I've ever paddled. The SRT carves turns like it's on rails. The more you lean, the sharper the turn, but it's difficult to get it to just spin in place. I'm not saying this is good or bad, it's just different. I'm still learning how it handles different situations, so I'm not as comfortable in rapids as I am in the Supernova, yet. There is a learning curve when it comes to paddling the SRT.

As others have mentioned, it's difficult to beat royalex or T-Formex when it comes to durability on northern rivers. I don't worry about abusing my Supernova. I feel like I have to baby the SRT (quite) a bit more.


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 11:18 am 
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Location: Duluth, MN
I'm not sure what keeps drawing me back to the SRT. I think it's the depth and efficiency. Being a little longer/deeper than the Phoenix, for example, makes me think it could provide a dryer ride through waves. I have been looking into the Phoenix as well, and I've heard great things about the IXP layup. Certainly, for where I live, it will be easier to test paddle a Phoenix than an SRT.

Thanks for sharing your perspective, du Nord! I've heard the paddling experience with the SRT is unique. I spoke with Dave Curtis recently, and he reiterated the learning curve, and suggested making the SRT one's 'go to' canoe to really dial it in...Having done most of my river tripping in the Royalex era, I am fearful of needing to baby a composite canoe.

I see you're in WI. Last summer I had a lovely trip in my Swift Osprey on the Flambeau, from the Turtle Flambeau Flowage to Beaver Dam Landing. Fun times.


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 11:27 am 
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Joined: January 3rd, 2017, 1:48 pm
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Location: St. Catharines, Ontario
Thanks for that comparison duNord. I've been very interested in the Northstar lineup in IXP and being 6'4" and 230lbs I keep coming back to canoes that top out efficiency at around 350-400lb.

I was pretty impressed by Bear's video showing the wear on his B17 in IXP. https://youtu.be/CsA-s1h478o?t=431

tom-o; I 100% agree with your reservations about a composite canoe. I do love the Basalt and Innegra layups. I also don't think I would ever purchase a canoe that had a gel coat and a "good" chance of finding rocks fairly often.


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 12:31 pm 
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Joined: January 8th, 2007, 9:56 pm
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Location: Wisconsin
When I spoke with Dave Curtis at Hemlock Canoe Works, he said they had done some experimentation with basalt/innegra layups (like IXP) but weren't happy with the results. He didn't elaborate.

Novacraft's Tuffstuff layup is basalt/innegra, but they cover it with gel coat. I friend of mine that works in a canoe store says that it's difficult to make basalt/innegra look good when wrapping around the stems, so Novacraft uses a gel coat layer to hide the flaws.

I would like a Hemlock SRT in Northstar's IXP layup please.


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PostPosted: November 23rd, 2021, 1:33 pm 
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Location: St. Catharines, Ontario
I would agree with your friend.

Novacraft was prototyping some 16' Prospectors the basalt/innegra layup with clear epoxy finishes. I saw the same thing on them, very rough / wavy looking stems. I passed on them for a TuffStuff Expedition grade canoe.

Novacraft also use to boast about having the best gelcoat guy in the business. Kevin Callan's (https://i.pinimg.com/originals/ea/41/a5 ... 3862b8.jpg) Canada Day canoe is an example of his work.

Maybe the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, but I feel like every outfitter I visit now is extolling the ease of returning epoxy finished canoes back to "like new" after a season of hard use. I was specifically told Northstar canoe's are about as easy as it gets.


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