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Submitted: 06-25-2010 by TJBeechcraft
Pretty good boat for rec use...very stable, comfy seat, easy access rear hatch. I can even reach the rear hatch while on the water and the cam locks make it easy to open/close. Never any issues with water tightness, but front 'day hatch' can get a few drops. Not very fast, but makes up in roominess.
One drawback is weight. Old Town made an attempt to lighten in 2009 models by going to what they called a 'variable layer' design (as opposed to the traditional 3 layer). It does save maybe 6 or 7 pounds, but because it is thinner and uses less plastic, I can actually feel the hull flexing in the water at times. Much different from the 3 layer Old Town 'Loons' we used to rent that were very stiff. If weight is an issue, go with the 2009 variable layer. If you prefer better build quality, check for the tri-layer (easy to spot as it will have a beige-colored interior layer). Looks as if Old Town has gone back to the 3 layer design from the looks of their website.
I give this boat an 8 out of 10 due to its moderate speed and fair build quality. Perhaps a different model year and I would give it a 9. Does very well for its intended purpose (small to medium sized flatwater lakes, slow rivers; do not recommend Great Lakes). Very stable and virtually indestructible. Even with those good qualities, I feel the rear hatch is one of its best features...lots of storage space and cam lock system is super easy even from a seated position. Some earlier models did not come standard with a paddle holder, but this one did; it is well positioned (much more so than my touring boat that cost twice as much).
Even though there are less expensive rec boats out there, this one is a pretty good value for the price; 12 feet of boat is more than enough for anyone in the novice/intermediate stage and it's hard to damage the rotomolded plastic.
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