Submitted: 10-25-2010 by Thom
In 2010, we purchased our first Swift Mattawa for canoe tripping in and around Algonquin Provincial Park, ON. Of course all based on proven first hand in-field experience performance.
During the Summer of 2009 my then 7 year old son and I used a 15 foot Peterborough Cedar strip canoe on a 4 day canoe trip with our good friends and neighbors who took along their new Swift Winisk 17'6". While on our trip, we were constantly finding ourselves paddling 4 strokes to their effortless 1 just to keep up with them. Not to mention the BIG WAVES we ran into on the East end of Ralph Bice Lake while heading into a VERY STRONG West wind. Our friends rounded the corner first into the open water where they were met by the 3 foot rollers first. We just hung back a bit to watch them cross cut through them with complete ease and stability. At that very moment I knew I was sold on the Swift design and had to have one!!
Fast forward to 2010, we once again found ourselves on a Algonquin canoe trip with our neighbors, but this time be both took our new Swift canoes. My 8 year old son and I in our new Mattawa and Brian and his son in their Winisk. What a difference in joy, speed, stability and safety we experience! On the last day of our 4 day trip, we meet a fierce West wind on Smoke Lake just after finishing the Kootchie Lake portage. The portage was just being pounded by 3 foot plus waves where we needed to put-in on Smoke. Having pushed the front adjustable seat all-the-way forward, along with our two packs positioned, one in front of the bow seat and the other behind. And I only having my 40 lb., eight year old son in the bow seat, my only worry was that we did not have enough weight in the boat. Being that we choose to buy our Swift Mattawa in Kevlar Fusion with carbon/Kevlar integrated gunwales, our boat only weight-in at a super light 35 lb. +, so we needed more weight. Brianís son Tristan piped up and offered up one of their packs, since they had a longer boat and both out weighting us. All loaded and balanced up, we shoved off! I knew we were in for a paddle and that our new Mattawa could handle it, but what a pleasant surprise to see our Mattawa perform!!! I was watching the tree line as we paddled and were never stopped moving forward, despite the heavy West wind and waves we were padding into. Oh, and for those of you who know Smoke Lake in Algonquin, their wasnít a single motor boat out on the Lake that day to give you an idea of the conditions. Well, except for the O.P.P (Ontario Provincial Police) jet boat that met us at the landing and gave my son a t-shirt for wearing his life jacket.
Bottom line, we love our Swift Mattawa!! First, because we know we can count on it to perform to enjoy and second, we know we can count on it to perform to keep us safe when we need it to!!! Canít wait until 2011, thank you Swift!!!!