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Thread: Aire Traveler/SOAR Pro Pioneer

  1. #1

    Default Aire Traveler/SOAR Pro Pioneer

    I am considering purchasing either the Aire Traveler or SOAR Pro Pioneer. The SOAR PP claims to have a much higher payload which would be an advantage. They appear to be about the same size and I do like the ability of pairing 2 Travelers to make a catacanoe. I assume the same could be done with the PP.

    Does anyone have any observations/comparisons?

    Also, what class of rivers should these products be limited to in their single configuration or paired?

    Has anyone used one to fish the Kenai or similar rivers?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Member BlueMoose's Avatar
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    There has been a ton of debate concerning this very same subject and you have pro's / con's with both. You should also look at the Sotar that G.V. Alaska Wildwater has been pushing out. Again each boat has its plus and minus thing going on. If you use the Application versus cost versus warranty question you might answer your own question.

    As an example if you wish to have a self bailing boat the Soar PP if I am not mistaken is lacking. If you are looking for a general use platform for extra load it is tuff to beat the Cata-canoe with two travelers. If your just looking for a single boat solo trips the PP Does offer additional pay load in ruffer water but by no means and again this is my opinion is ment to handle that extra load in middle to upper clasiffications of white-water. Still all and all what it was designed for it meets its application and the same goes with the Traveler.

    It is all in the eye of the holder.

    Good luck and happy shopping.

    Moose-O

  3. #3
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    The Aire Traveler is probably closer in comparison to the Soar Canyon at 15'. The primary reason for the difference in weight capacity is the Aire is self bailing and the Soar has an inflatable tub floor that does not bail. Either boat could work as a catacanoe, but they create quite a wide craft at 8' with no gap in the middle. The Aire is one inch narrower; not enough to matter. Still an 8' wide raft is going to require long oars and a wide path.

    14" tubes are small for a raft, so plan on taking quite a bit of water over the bow and sides in any kind of a splash. Since the Pro Pioneer or Canyon are not self bailing this would severely limit them to relatively flat water in a catacanoe configuration. I have heard there is a simple way to convert them to self bailers, but the small drain holes will be slow in self bailing, and doing so will greatly limit their capacity. I think if making a catacanoe is a serious thought on your part, the Traveler would be a better first choice.

    If you're not serious about the catacanoe option then you have to ask yourself questions like; how much weight will you need to haul, do you need/want self bailing, etc. I think they are both great designs but for slightly different purposes.

    I've used a much smaller catacanoe (2 Aire Lynx) in class III & IV water, but it was a seriously wet ride. Stable & fun though.

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    Ive used the aire outfitter II (slightly larger than the Lynx) loaded with about 500 lbs, myself included, and it handled class III well enough it was a wet ride but lots of fun. I've never used it as a cata-canoe though.

  5. #5
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    The Aire Trav and SOAR Pro Pio are quite dissimilar. Tho' they may overlap somewhat application-wise, these are completely different boats.

    Catacanoes are an expensive mistake for the most part. These are pretty much a way to justify a need for having two canoes and all the accessory expenditure that go along with them. When compared with Catarafts and Self-bailers... I see Catacanoe modifications as mostly a case of contraption more than anything practical or providing any real savings. They have sluggish handling and are complex as well as heavier. It is my opinion, you are much better off in the long run to have a canoe or two plus purchase a raft.

    A good boater C-1 (or pair C-2) will be able to run through class IV to -V whitewater. Big water volume and reversals would be the worst of scenarios in both boats... yet here the Trav design holds a true edge in that it is designed better for paddling whitewater (except the crappy seating), is self bailing, has faster acceleration for wave punching, rigidity for responsiveness, more rugged, and way easier to self-rescue (right and get back into). Paddling limitations would be more on the user's end of things. If rowed as a single canoe or when paired up - I do see several limitations particularly and much more-so in the Catacanoe configurations.

    I do not enjoy either of these boats drift fishing and regard them as poor choices on swifter/larger rivers or twisty-turny streams. Lack of roominess, comforts, containment, stability, etc. all play a role in my kind of fishin' decision-making.

    CIMG2369-1.jpgCIMG2384.jpg

  6. #6

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    Thanks for the input and observations.

  7. #7

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    actually, the Pro Pioneer can be self bailing easily enough. Two ways to make this happen: 1). pull the patches off the bail holes that come from the factory, which are located in each of the four corners of the floor. 2). ask me to punch the holes for you, many hunters do on the old models without factory bail holes. too easy either way.

    If i'm running whitewater in my Pro Pioneer, i take my self bailer model, otherwise i keep it dry and go with my non-self bailing mode.

    Patches over the bail holes are easily removed and replaced with shore adhesive.

    But as for your catacanoe concept...i agree with brian richardson. not a perfect or ideal system, but it does work for some applications.

  8. #8
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Bartlett View Post
    actually, the Pro Pioneer can be self bailing easily enough. Two ways to make this happen: 1). pull the patches off the bail holes that come from the factory, which are located in each of the four corners of the floor. 2). ask me to punch the holes for you, many hunters do on the old models without factory bail holes....
    Larry,

    How large are those bailer holes, and are they located all the way around the floor or just toward the ends? Do you have a photo you can post?

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
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  9. #9

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    Hey Mike, as on other SOAR Models you can expect bail holes to be located in each of the four corners as described, with hole sizes to be 7/8" around and 4-5 ea per corner, spaced about 1.5" apart.

    With these bail holes open I have comfortablly run class IV whitewater under loads and bail time depends on water volume isnide canoe, but let's say 50 gallons of water over the side tubes, usually empties in 75 yards river length (or about 30-45 seconds). This assumes much for river speed, of course, but it seems fast enough under most whitewater scenarios.

    Pictures? I'll see what I can dig up, but don't recall having taken photos of the just the bail holes. I'll ask SOAR to take a digital pic if I can't find them in my stock, and then i'll post here.

    stand by.

    larry

  10. #10

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    Bail holes on the Pro Pioneer

    bail holes.jpg

  11. #11
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Bartlett View Post
    Bail holes on the Pro Pioneer

    bail holes.jpg
    Excellent, Larry! Thanks for taking the time. Sorry about my memory; I just could not remember if the holes ran around the perimeter of the floor, or were at each end. Seems to me if you had a light load you could just pick one end up and let the water drain out if there was any residual sitting in there... Do you find water sitting in the center section much, or does the design allow it to run out okay?

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  12. #12

    Default self-bailing Canyon

    I concur with Larry; the Soars are self-bailing if you want them to be. I have used the Pro Pioneer, Canyon and S16 as self-bailers. I remove the patches from one end of the boat, and leave them on the other end. Then I make sure that the holes are in the stern when I'm packing up. All the water that comes in migrates to the stern and goes out. If I don't want a self-bailer, it's easy to throw some duct tape over the hole on the inside of the boat.

    The Canyon and ProPioneer have a MUCH greater capacity than the Traveler. The main criticism is their weight.

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