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Submitted: 11-09-2012 by loucksgl
I own a Mistral 17.5, Champlain 16' and now a Attikamek 16. The Attikamek is very similar to the Champlain. The width and depth are a bit deeper and wider on the Attikamek @ 15.5" depth and 36" width. I would like to have seen a wider canoe here. The big difference between the Champlain and Attikamek is the rocker. The Champlain carries a 2.5" rocker bow and stern while the Attikamek is 1" stern and 2" bow. The weight on the Attikamek comes in at 48 lb advertised and the Champlain weighs 54 lb advertised. All my canoes have ash trim.
How's it paddle? Primary stability is average. A new paddler should be very cautious. After seated the secondary is fine. This canoe demands the paddler to exercise good technique. Once under way the canoe is solid. Although it has a tippy feel - it is a reliable canoe that can be maneuvered quickly around obstacles. The boat flies. It is very fast. Kevlar canoes remind me of a leaf floating on the surface. They are light weight and sit high giving the sensation of instability... The boat, however, is very stable. Its a matter of familiarizing ones self with the canoe and then driving it.
The Attikamek turns on a dime and gives change. Loaded with gear - it is a great, quality, stable traveler. The reduced rocker front and back make this boat easier to control than the Champlain. It is not as sensitive to wind either but, wind will have its way with this kevlar boat. Its all about paddling skills.
The two places extreme caution needs applied is entering and exiting the craft. This is not a canoe to stand and pole in. It requires low center of gravity. There are canoes that exhibit greater primary and secondary stability. Stability is a subjective issue. I have no trouble with it. The boat is well made. I put it in the water and I drive it and have fun. Rather than pick a canoe apart on technical this or that - I accept it for what it is and go enjoy it.
The Attikamek is a fine canoe. I'm satisfied with its performance and I enjoy it thoroughly.
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