Submitted: 05-15-2006 by Canoehead
I have had one for a couple of years and find it to be really well suited to mixed tripping. I'll try not to confuse the rating of this canoe with prospector canoes in general. Prospectors are all good at combined flat/moving water. None of them track well, and they all tend to be nice solo boats. I like Trailhead's design because it is deeper than the others and it is adequately stiff. This stiffness also holds its strong rocker, making it very responsive. I prefer this canoe to an Old Town tripper in whitewater and big waves. I suspect a tripper would be faster if paddled hard.
Compared to my Mad River explorer, there is no contest - the prospector is a better tripper. Compared to the XL Tripper, the prospector is more maneuverable and lighter, but both perform well on big lakes (I'd take the prospector and put a spray cover on it). Compared to the Nova Craft Prospector, the trailhead boat is a bit stiffer and deeper, but not quite as flat, so it has a bit less initial stability.
I give it a nine so I have room to credit any new boats. It is my favourite tripping boat right now, though.