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Submitted: 07-19-2000 by Curt Russell

This canoe is a great compromise for those who want both a down river boat and a tripper. Payload capacity is great, with lots of room for kids and gear. The down river maneuverability is its weakness, at 17' with moderate rocker, complex rapids are a challenge. I have run lots of Class I and II rapids with no difficulty, and a half dozen ligitimate Class III's without dumping it (and with a 10 year old bow man). Rapids higher than Class III would likely require floatation bags unless you're really good. For flat water, this canoe tracks very well and glides effortlessly. Its has great stability for squirmy kids. If you're intent is downriver running only, with lots of intense rapids, there are better boats. As a tripper or lake runner, this boat is excellent. For a compromise between down river and flat water, I give it a 9 rating, as this is a difficult compromise to achieve. The Penobscot 17 serves these purposes well. Happy canoeing!
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