Submitted: 06-18-2009 by WeeHooker
Just an update to my earlier review.
Having had a chance to row this boat a few times now, I figured I'd pass on some thoughts. The Osprey 155 comes with 4 oarlocks that can be set up either side of the center seat. If you sit facing aft in the center seat, the aft oarlocks are positioned about 12" behind the leading edge of your/center seat. If you turn around to row, the forward oarlocks are about 15" from the seat. I found rowing from the 12" position tight and limiting in stroke length (note: the oarlocks are low as compared to a traditional rowing boat.) However, in the latter position, it's much more comfortable and less restrictive. It also allowed me (@ 5'8 or so) to rest my feet on the front seat edge as kind of a foot brace. In this position, the 155 moves like you would expect from a properly trimmed 15+' double stem boat. i.e. efficiently and quickly. With a set of 6.5' aluminum oars, a light stroke pushes the boat nearly a whole boat length without loosing momentum and with no tracking issues ( even with a light/mod crosswind.) There is no doubt that of the traditional paddling, double paddling and rowing I've done in this craft, the oars will give you twice the speed at 1/2 the effort. The only downside to rowing the boat is that you need a good 10-12' of clear water width to move the boat. This could be an issue if you frequent tight/turning creeks and streams where there are obstructions.