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Submitted: 08-21-2013 by Eric Leon

Northshore is now owned by Valley Kayaks but not back when they were building the Freewater. The interesting thing is the Freewater has Valley hatches and looks like a Valley product on close inspection. I own several Valley boats. As was mentioned by the other review, the Freewater was the predecessor of the Shoreline AKA Atlantic LV. I also heard they made these boats in Denmark under license after North Shore discontinued the model.

The Freewater is a classic Greenlander and had enough storage space in the stern while I was exploring the coast for several days. There is not a bow hatch but instead a flotation bladder. I have replaced and put a heavy duty one in. I sat inside with the cockpit full of water once and she just floated. These boats are hard to find now and I have only seen one other in my time kayaking. They are amazingly seaworthy kayaks and easy to do backward leans and role. I have pushed the limits of wind and ocean with this kayak and have built a sturdy trust in it.

I own a Valley Skerray FG and a Pintail. This kayak is closer in looks to these boats and behaves somewhere in between like a bigger boat even though it is a foot shorter. The initial and secondary stability is excellent. It does not have a skeg or rudder like the other two boats and I am not in a rush to put one in. It measures 16' in length, just under 22" in width, and a little over 12" in depth. I believe it is glass and diolene and it is very light, under 38 lbs. The kayak edges and maneuvers well in the rock gardens. It has a good speed for its size and keeps up with the longer boats with medium speeds.

All in all this has been a real fun boat for day tripping or weekend tours. It is one of the best looking boats of the 20 boats I have owned. I think it deserves a 10 because of the fun and enjoyment it brings.

Without the front hatch and just the air bladder, I have room for a dry bag as well as a storage net that hangs under deck that I have rigged up. The back hatch is a Valley with lots of room & it is water tight. This kayak has enough hatch room for several days of touring. The deck line and bungees are laid out simple into recessed fittings. I have worked as a shipwright and the inside resin & glass finishing is excellent.

I agree with the reviewer below on just about everything else he has covered. "I gave it a 10 as compared to other boats from that era, in design, maneuverability and practicality. It is very light for a non-Kevlar boat, very seaworthy for it's size and of course has beautiful lines. If you can find one of these little beauties at a good price grab it. You won't regret it.

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