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Thread: Load Position

  1. #1
    Member Hoyt's Avatar
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    Default Load Position

    I've canoed many times, including several long trips, but always with another paddler in the canoe. What is generally the best load positioning method, for a larger, say 18ft, canoe with just one paddler? For arguments sake, assume 300-350 lbs of camping gear, and one average size person. Paddler at the bow gear toward the stern etc... Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
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    If the canoe has a keel, I would sit in back and arrange cargo slightly ahead of center to balance canoe....I have traveled hundreds of miles this way but if the canoe does not have a keel, it probably won't track very well.

  3. #3
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    Default load position

    When I solo, all cargo/weight is distributed evenly. I seat in the back seat (3/4 back), most of the gear in front of me, and some behind me. I am able to control the canoe very well from that position.

    Rainydayhunter

  4. #4
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    I have found that when I solo canoe the best position for me is to paddle "backwards," that is, I sit in what is normally the bow seat, facing what is normally the stern. This puts my position (and weight) closer to the middle of the boat and the pivot point, and I load my gear just slightly ahead of the middle thwart. With both myself and gear loaded mid-boat, I find I have excellent control for maneuvering. However, when your paddling closer amidships, it takes a bit more effort to paddle in a straight line (a more pronounced "j" stroke).

    My normal tandem rough water canoe is a Royalex 18' Old Town Tripper. For calmer waters, also tandem, I like to use my 18' Old Town Discovery. For solo canoing and camping, I use a 16' Mohawk. I must admit, though, as the years pile atop of me, I am seriously considering buying a light weight Kevlar boat. Those Royalex tugboats seem to get heavier with each passing season!

  5. #5
    Member Hoyt's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info!

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