Lining inflatable canoes upstream?
How easy are these inflatables to line up river? I have done several hunts through the years lining my canoe up river to beat the crowds. Hess creek was a favorite, Koyukuk on the haul rd, and rivers on the Kenai penn.. Is the pro pioneer suited for this?
I am also looking at an idea of carrying a small raft(or a grader inner tube) and staying with my hard shell canoe(inflate the small extra flotation only if I get a moose). This gives me the option of leap frogging through shallow spots if I need to, and distributing the weight(talking rivers with little or no difficult water). These new inflatables almost make it too easy..lol Half the fun for me has always been solving the riddle of getting the meat out....and i sure love paddling my canoe. I looked at the idea of taking two pontoons from a 9 foot one man fishing raft, and carrying them deflated and lashing them to the sides of the canoe once it was loaded with meat. Or there is always the fall back make two trips option I know pretty well. Just hate to give up the canoe..
I do it all the time. Here's a shot of me and a partner retrieving another partner's bull caribou that floated down over a mile after the killing shot. We floated down to catch up with the bull and then loaded it aboard the Pro Pioneer, then lined it back upstream through class I and Class II riffles. Current was about 5 mph, but the going was suitable.
I also prefer the Pro Pioneer for accessing the upstream spots that many hunters don't pursue. They line easily with one or two people.
Good luck.getting butchs bull.jpg
Is the raft suitable for one guy? I look for ridiculously shallow rivers that deter most folks(guess I should just break down and pay someone to fly me out, though even that isn't enough sometimes these days).
I know you have an interest in selling rafts.. but what do you think of carrying a pack raft in a hard shell canoe? I am still stuck on coming up with a solution to getting a large bull out in one trip with a canoe..lol
What I am looking at is.. eventually you ground out.. it's unavoidable... and you need to pack downriver to more water.. if you have a raft and a canoe.. you can put most the weight in one craft, and drag what you can to a blue tarp down river, make several trips, and start again.. it would take time, but would open up some places to hunt most won't go...
and it would a whole lot of fun...
the caribou is a great story. I never pass up a shot in the water.. I hunt alone most the time, and carry a rope come along with 1/2 inch low stretch poly line(150 foot). I shot a bull moose in waist deep water on the Kenai peninsula(Tustamena lake), and was expecting, and prepared for a big ordeal. When i waded out to get him , it took about 15 pounds of pull to get him to the beach, put a come along on a hind foot, drug him up, and was out in short order(got pretty lucky). The rope come along though is something I won't hunt without.
The PP goes upstream pretty well. Run a fixed line to the stern and a line with two loops at different lengths to the bow. Hook the loops over the horns of your packframe where they clear riverside brush. Vary the bow line length to ride out in the current with high drag or in close on clear bank with low drag. Bow line position can be changed on the fly, pretty easy.
I'm not trying to sell them, I just like mine alot. I do plan on getting a PP someday to round out my boat needs but the boat I have now is the Traveler from Alaska Raft. They also have a smaller version. The boat rolls up relatively small and paddles quiet well with one person in it, even without a rowing frame. It might just be the second go-to boat you have in mind. I'll need a PP for a serious float trip but for a second boat for towing, the Traveler cuts the water quite nicely due to the construction. It'd be a lot less to handle.
Just did a drop off at a lake with the Traveler. We paddled the boat all over the place, it was our primary transportation. After looking at my pictures vs. the PPs on the water loaded, I don't think I'd want to float trip my Traveler, it's just not as large and load capable. But by talking to PP owners, the PP isn't as fast on still water. Why's this relevant? I believe you COULD load an entire animal on the Traveler and then some as long as it wasn't your primary vessel. It would most definitely be easier to tow/drag. It would also have other attributes to make it better as the second vessel vs the larger, beefier PP. Also, the Traveler drains so if it's raining, no big deal. It cleans easier too because of this. A bottle of soap, a scrubbie, and it's a five minute job to degunk the thing. (nice) Without seats, it's about 42lbs.
Now, I've got to save up for my PP for next season!
thanks Vek... interesting idea.. have to play with that one. It's amazing sometimes the track a canoe wants to take.. seems to defy logic and physics. The stern line I will definitely play with... is it moose season yet? 11 months to go?..
Originally Posted by Vek
I looked at the Traveller, and it looks like an extremely capable boat... I am trying to get a hold of one of these boats to try out... and I do have a bit of time till moose opens again..lol
In spite of the pro pioneer being a bit large for my needs, it seems to be a lot of bang for the buck.
If my son goes with me next year, we will just take two hard shell canoes. If I end up going alone again, I will probably break down and get one of these two inflatables ..
I am going to get a large inner tube and play with dragging weight down the river by my house here. The hard shell, and a second carry along inflatable still seems interesting..
thanks for the help.
While it is certainly "do-able", I have found lining inflatables of any type upstream far more difficult, eventually exhaustive, than lining hard shell canoes upstream.
Or perhaps I just get tired more easily than some others.
hey anchor, i've tried the innertube idea and it works, but marginally. The hardshell canoe has a narrow margin for hull modifications, meaning they are designed to track well given its pointed bow and stern shape. when you attach an innertube that's wider than the stern, it creates some serious drag, which interups your tracking and maneuverability. be cautious with loads and maybe just experiement with your skillsets to find a suitable load that works for your gear.
Otherwise, inflatable to inflatable rigging with an innertube or packraft works very well. I've hooked my pro pioneer and big rig packraft together and paddled 60 miles this fall. i've also done it with the big rig and an alpacka explorer. both styles worked, but sluggish in fast water.
hope this helps, bud.
I've tried to "pull" extra loads that were attached by long rope to my oar powered raft, and found that since rowing moves the boat backwards I had to put the towed device in front where it would stay out of the way of the oars. Even then it was tricky trying to keep the towed boat in front at all times. If you tie it tight against the raft end it sort of works, but I still had better luck with it in front. Paddle powered craft would be different of course, since the primary stroke if forwards, but you still need to keep it tight against the back (or front) lest it come along side and mess with your paddling strokes.
I'm just thinking that tying a round anything to the point of a hard shell boat would be difficult to keep it from swinging along side. I'm sure it could be done, but an inflatable, especially something with a wide bow/stern like a Soar, would make life easier. Personally, if I was using a pointed canoe, even an inflatable like the Aire, I'd look for the extra boat to also be pointed, and I'd tie it along side and paddle from both, cata-canoe style. Only works with two paddlers of course. ------ I'm just thinking out loud here.
thanks for the feed back. I know having a second boat of some kind would be a pain, and wouldn't go overly smoothly, but once the game is in the boat, you cannot wipe the smile off my face, and the game of getting it out is more than half the fun for me. I've walked beside, and drug canoes for 30 miles with a moose, and loved every minute of it. It doesn't get any better as far as I am concerned..lol After two days on the bone and completely cooled out I like to start breaking it down a bit if legal.. set up a camp.. bone the ribs, shoulders, and even the hams sometimes. We sure are lucky to live here eh?
seems a guy could design a water tight river bag(top loading) with an abrasion proof bottom that a guy could load, inflate and drag. It could weigh very little, and easily be good for 2-300 pounds(if the abrasion side was wide enough).. being water tight, it could go in a bit of white water as well...
i dunno, flotation is fun to play with.
Really sound like the traveler would be the answer, and at just over 50lbs it's alot easier to handle.
Originally Posted by tboehm
yea, it's an attractive boat.. if I can talk my 18 year old son into going along(he wants to go to South America this Summer for skiing), we'll just take two hard shells(he's only helped me with two moose, I'm pretty sure the kid contract states a son has to be involved with at least three, and he can carry the caribou tag...lol).. if I go alone again I'll need to come up with another plan.
I had so much fun this year I can't wait to go again, .. might have to chase a black bear or something with what is left of Fall, shoot some grouse. Getting run off the Kenai penninsula with the new regs might be a blessing in disguise, great to get out and see more of the state. The the added pressure we Kenai penn folks are putting on the other areas is a concern... is what it is..
Thanks for the response.