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Submitted: 03-27-2000 by Brad K.

I bought the (fiberglass, no skeg) Caribou last year, and it is a thing of beauty that feels exquisite in the water. The lack of a skeg does show up slightly in a crosswind, but you can use the hard chines (with some practice)to compensate. I find the back pad inadequate, leaving my spine exposed to the unforgiving back edge of the cockpit coaming, so I corrected that problem with a larger piggyback pad. I had to cut additional slots in the footbrace anchors, because I found them too short at the longest setting, and I'm only 5'11'', which is a little puzzling, but now it's just perfect. And the cockpit opening is wonderful - you can straddle the boat and simply sit down with your legs dangling over the side, then draw your legs in one after the other, without risking the embarrassment of a wet exit before you even start off. This is a pleasant surprise in such a narrow kayak. This boat strikes a nice balance between tracking and turning. It has a noticeable rocker (midship keel lower than ends) which allows easy turning, but I suspect the acute V near the ends combined with the hard chines might explain why the tracking is also quite good. I love this boat. In spite of the tweaks I felt were necessary for my use, it rates a 10.
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