Canoe QuartetFour new , highly specialized rides


DOWNRIVER WEEKENDER

Esquif Pocket Canyon
$1,320esquif.com

  • L: 14 ft 6 in
  • W: 34.5 in
  • D: 15.5 in
  • 59 lbs.
  • Available in: Royalex


A radically downsized version of Esquif’s expedition-oriented Canyon, this tandem canoe is designed for moving water, tight maneuvers, and a modes load. Four inches of rocker lends quick pivoting ability and the short length makes the boat easy to handle. The Royalex Pocket Canyon comes standard with vinyl trim and web seats, but can also be set up with a saddle for longer, solo tripping. This is not, however, an entry-level canoe; develop your paddling chops a bit before you hop in.



TANDEM CRUISER

Nova Craft Cronje
$1,449-$2,999, novacraft.com

  • L: 17 ft
  • W: 35 in
  • D: 21/13/21 in
  • 47 to 60 lbs
  • Available in Kevlar, Kevlar/ Spectra, Blue Steel, and Royalex Light


Another offering in Nova Craft’s line of hulls resurrected from the Chestnut Canoe Company, the Cronje conjures images of the Boundary Waters’ furthest reaches. The shallow hull, arched bottom, and almost flat waterline make the Cronje a machine for connecting Point A to Point B. Winds don’t push it around; it tracks fast and true across open water. Recurved ends give it classic lines and a bit of tumblehome encourages ergonomic strokes—all with the ability to carry 1,000 pounds with six inches of freeboard.



SOLO TRIPPER

Wenonah Wilderness
$1,099-$2,529, wenonah.com

  • L: 15 ft 4 in
  • W: 30.5 in
  • D: 19/14/17 in
  • 31-47 lb.
  • Available in: Royalex, Tuf-weave Flex-core, Kevlar Flex-core, Kevlar Ultra-light, and Graphite Ultra-light


Known for their big tandem canoes (and as pioneers of three- and four-person boats), Wenonah scaled down their latest offering. The Wilderness fills the solo expedition gap in Wenonah’s extensive catalog, combining load-handling volume, wave-shedding depth, muscle-soothing tumblehome, and a hint of rocker for maneuverability. With nice hull speed, adept ferrying ability, and stability to keep you dry, this is a great boat for, say, the Northern Forest Canoe Trail.



TOURING TANDEM

Mad River Reflection 17
$1,180-$1,580, madrivercanoe.com

  • L: 17 ft 4 in
  • W: 35.5 in
  • D: 17/13/17 in
  • 66-70 lbs.
  • Available in: Royalex


Mad River has revived several popular and successful Dagger canoes, including the Reflection 17, which takes a 900-pound load and tracks true across open water, but has enough bow rocker that it won’t fight you on moving current. Lightweight and surprisingly nimble for a longer canoe, the Royalex hull can be outfitted with aluminum, wood, or Mad River’s patented IQ gunwale packages-which feature tracks that accept various accessories, from spray covers to dry bags to cup holders. Perfect for getting away from it all—without straying too far.

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Buyer's Guide

Buyer's Guide