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Thread: Canoe vs Jon Boat

  1. #1
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    Default Canoe vs Jon Boat

    Good Afternoon everyone. I am in the market for a boat for the upcoming summer/fall months. I am a school teacher on the Yukon with a small family (3 yr old and 5 month old) and am trying to decide between a canoe or a jon boat. I have looked into getting a boat freighted out here (Lower Yukon/Kuskokwim Delta, though I am on the Yukon) but the price is scaring me off. I have a few leads on some "gently used" jon boats and a canoe already out here. The canoe has either a 3.5 hp or a 5 hp motor.

    I'm leaning towards the canoe for efficiency and stealth but that Yukon is pretty big. I like the jon boat for set net fishing.
    I checked out the powerboat forum but not sure if that would be where I would want to look.

    What is the advantages of a canoe over a jon boat? No one here uses a canoe b/c everyone wants the power and speed of a river boat. But I honestly like the slow pace of a canoe.

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    The primary object of the canoe is fuel economy.....slower yes .....but your probably paying $8/gal.

    How big are the canoes out there?

    I would be tempted to advertise for a large canoe/boat from folks that are floating the Yukon and would prefer selling their canoe/boat rather than shipping it out.

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    You would want a pretty wide stable freighter canoe. Most of the village used outboards that I've seen have been rode hard and....as long as you always head upriver, and you can paddle back home. A 3-5hp outboard is going to be pretty slow heading upriver on the Yukon. You may be better off with the Jon boat....

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    I considered the big freighter canoe but after checking out a few scott freighters at the boat ramp in Circle I was not impressed at all and it would not work for me and my family. I'm running a 20'x48" flatbottom with a 35hp Go-devil surface drive and it works great for me..................
    I once held the yardstick of anothers perfection, I threw it down and carved my own................

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    the 2 rigs are different as night an day jodn boat can go faster [ large motor] the canoe go slower [ better Miles per gal.
    there are a few canoes that would be the size you need . the ""lund boats" are long an narrower better MPG , than a john boat it take a little
    know how to get the canoe to preform like you want , a boat is more forgiving that a canoe on the water , my 2 CTS SID

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    Yeah. I've spent a little (I mean that literally) time in a canoe. Mainly lakes and small slow rivers. I've spent a little more time in a Jon boat but not a whole lot more. As a matter of fact I've spent more time on a surf board than a boat.

    My dilemma is time and cost. I have no idea how long I get to stay where I'm at. I'd hate to drop $8k and then get sent to the kuskokwim. Most my time will be spent in sloughs or on the innoko (federal land for hunting). I'd only be available to go out on weekends so a little speed would be nice but I'm notmsuremif I could afford the gas to get out like I'd want.

    Im not sure I'm willing to tackle my set net wi a canoe. However I'm not sure if I really want a Jon boat because I would be limited on some of the sloughs I want to tackle.

    It seems from reading here that a canoe could be useful for what I want to do, once I get across the Yukon. Anyone out there run both?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yukon Cornelius View Post
    Im not sure I'm willing to tackle my set net wi a canoe. However I'm not sure if I really want a Jon boat because I would be limited on some of the sloughs I want to tackle.
    If your reasoning here is less tippy, you can solve that with canoe selection. The scott brand canoes in particular are very very stable. When my 19' scott canoe is loaded, I can walk either gunnel stem to stern without it tipping. Of course your jon is going to haul a heckuva lot more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    If your reasoning here is less tippy, you can solve that with canoe selection. The scott brand canoes in particular are very very stable. When my 19' scott canoe is loaded, I can walk either gunnel stem to stern without it tipping. Of course your jon is going to haul a heckuva lot more.
    As I'm doing my research I have discovered that some of these freighter canoes are very stable. I was dead set on getting a Jon until the moose season when I encountered two hunters who paddled the innoko to my village across the Yukon in an inflatable canoe. They had a 55" bull and a small black bear plus all their gear. I was impressed. I have a small net (60footer) and would only be setting it out until I had enough fish for the family. I mainly want to use it for moose hunting and getting out of the village for some free time.
    There are plenty of used cheap Jon boats. But canoes are almost nonexistent where I'm at.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sid View Post
    the 2 rigs are different as night an day jodn boat can go faster [ large motor] the canoe go slower [ better Miles per gal.
    there are a few canoes that would be the size you need . the ""lund boats" are long an narrower better MPG , than a john boat it take a little
    know how to get the canoe to preform like you want , a boat is more forgiving that a canoe on the water , my 2 CTS SID
    You know, I'd have to go with Sid on this one, and put in a recommendation for a Lund V hull. I spent the last year or so workingo ut the same question as you in my head and Lund (or a similar Lowe, Tracker, what have you) was up there high on my list. I grew up on the water in the south, and have used V-hulls, jon boats, canoes, fiberglass, composite, metal blablabla. I wen with a a square stern canoe over the Lund v-hull solely because i wanted to get into very shallow backwaters, but if I knew my primary waterway was going to be big, wide, fast rivers, I'd have bought the V-hull in an instant. By the way, a jon boat was never, EVER on my list. Been there, done that, never going back. Those flat hulls "feel" stable but they really aren't. It doesn't take much to rock a jon boat, especially the smaller ones, the same as a canoe. I've just never like them.

    Checkout the Lund Utility line of boats and the Alaskan line. Pretty awesome-maybe I'll buy one someday anyway. BTW, they're bullet proof.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FL2AK-Old Town View Post
    You know, I'd have to go with Sid on this one, and put in a recommendation for a Lund V hull. I spent the last year or so workingo ut the same question as you in my head and Lund (or a similar Lowe, Tracker, what have you) was up there high on my list. I grew up on the water in the south, and have used V-hulls, jon boats, canoes, fiberglass, composite, metal blablabla. I wen with a a square stern canoe over the Lund v-hull solely because i wanted to get into very shallow backwaters, but if I knew my primary waterway was going to be big, wide, fast rivers, I'd have bought the V-hull in an instant. By the way, a jon boat was never, EVER on my list. Been there, done that, never going back. Those flat hulls "feel" stable but they really aren't. It doesn't take much to rock a jon boat, especially the smaller ones, the same as a canoe. I've just never like them.

    Checkout the Lund Utility line of boats and the Alaskan line. Pretty awesome-maybe I'll buy one someday anyway. BTW, they're bullet proof.
    I'll check out these lunds. I'm a little concerned about the draft though. I'd only be on the Yukon for a short time. So many options. My main reason for thinking canoe is the energy efficiency. But what good would an efficient canoe do me if I died crossing the Yukon. Lol.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    The Yukon is not bigger than the water here around Wrangell. I have a 14' lund with a 20h/p and a 16' canoe with a 3 1/2 h/p. both work fine but the canoe for sure can get in thin water better. When the seas are four foot and blowing 30mph the Lund is less scary. Both can go up the Stickeen the fastest river in Alaska. Its a easy guess which one I can pull out of the water.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    as you can see there is no single answer to your question ,every one is a litle different , they have the fix for there rig , an it might not be for you /
    most of there rigs are for the one or two things they like to do the most, or 1, 2, 3 other rigs to do different jobs , if they only have one rig they have work around or don't do it , if you plan to run a net in the river you will need a very latge canoe or a boat as it very hard to pull from the side of a canoe [ tippey ] on small canoe's , you will need a 20 ft or more unit to do what you want an be safe I thnk , moose hunt can be in a 16 to 17 FT but a lot better if 19 or 20 ft , some people will say they can do it in a 16 to 18 ft ,an it can be dun, but a lot better in the 19 to 20 ft units, the small rig you can move it by yourself [ no help ] an as you get larger units you will need help [ some ] a lot of the people just evolved to what they have today , it is the free money [ spendable ] they have to play with like my self 19 FT SQ , lift with 2 out board motors 15 hp 2 cycle &
    10 hp 4 cycle, also being out there in the bush you will have to deal with what is out there or bring it in [ lots of money ] there is no single rig
    if there was we would all have it I THINK SID

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sid View Post
    as you can see there is no single answer to your question ,every one is a litle different , they have the fix for there rig , an it might not be for you /
    most of there rigs are for the one or two things they like to do the most, or 1, 2, 3 other rigs to do different jobs , if they only have one rig they have work around or don't do it , if you plan to run a net in the river you will need a very latge canoe or a boat as it very hard to pull from the side of a canoe [ tippey ] on small canoe's , you will need a 20 ft or more unit to do what you want an be safe I thnk , moose hunt can be in a 16 to 17 FT but a lot better if 19 or 20 ft , some people will say they can do it in a 16 to 18 ft ,an it can be dun, but a lot better in the 19 to 20 ft units, the small rig you can move it by yourself [ no help ] an as you get larger units you will need help [ some ] a lot of the people just evolved to what they have today , it is the free money [ spendable ] they have to play with like my self 19 FT SQ , lift with 2 out board motors 15 hp 2 cycle &
    10 hp 4 cycle, also being out there in the bush you will have to deal with what is out there or bring it in [ lots of money ] there is no single rig
    if there was we would all have it I THINK SID
    thanks so much Sid. unfortunately i don't have funds for multiple units. i really want a canoe for sloughs and moose and the jon type for the net. it will come down to what is available b/c of cost to get here. i think the plan is to beg and borrow while i save up for what i really want. i only do a set net for a few days. i dont need a lot of fish, but it is fun giving the fish away to those that can't get out.

    thanks to everyone for providing information to me. it all helps me make an informed decision.

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    Why can't you run a jon boat in the sloughs? or do you mean sloughs off the river? I have a 16' canoe I throw in my flatbottom that I use in the sloughs and lakes off the river I think I paid $100 for it used. Sounds like maybe you just need to make some friends with a boat lol..........
    I once held the yardstick of anothers perfection, I threw it down and carved my own................

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    Quote Originally Posted by thunder chicken1 View Post
    Why can't you run a jon boat in the sloughs? or do you mean sloughs off the river? I have a 16' canoe I throw in my flatbottom that I use in the sloughs and lakes off the river I think I paid $100 for it used. Sounds like maybe you just need to make some friends with a boat lol..........
    this is what I'm thinking. With a Jon boat I could pretty much get anywhere. The canoe idea came about because of the stealthy capabilities and the fuel efficiency idea. You get tired of dropping $80 a day for gas. Ideally I'd get a canoe and bum a ride across Yukon or get closer to federal land before I put in. Then catch ride home on Sunday. I got friends that took me out this year but our schedules didn't always collaborate. Unfortunately or maybe it's fortunately I have a Monday through Friday job. This summer I have access to both a canoe and Jon but I would like my own so I could do my own thing.

    Do you run your canoe with a motor?

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    My go-devil sips the gas and I can go where the guys with the props can't but I use paddles for the canoe because I drag it up over the bank and back to lakes and sloughs, if it's a good spot I usually just leave the canoe there so I don't have to drag it all the time.....................
    I once held the yardstick of anothers perfection, I threw it down and carved my own................

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    Thanks everyone. I got a lead on a very affordable Jon boat. In town but it is a friend's boat so a good deal. I'm going to get a small canoe to throw in the boat for my slough paddling to save money. I can get a cheap canoe here in he village. And then save my money for the canoe I want.

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    Great that it came together for you,enjoy. My canoe is an old coleman heavy but stout,cheap and does the job.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Wise choice....................
    I once held the yardstick of anothers perfection, I threw it down and carved my own................

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    My canoe is an old coleman heavy but stout,cheap and does the job.
    I grew up hating and despising those things...BUT...they are kinda bullet proof. Funny how your priorities and personal tastes change after you've been in Alaska a few years.

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