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Submitted: 08-22-2013 by Jarrod
My wife and I have owned the Quetico 18.5 composite canoe for about 8 years now. We have paddled the canoe in Northern Ontario for extended trips ranging from 3-10 days. We have also used the boat for coastal paddling in British Columbia and the East coast for trips ranging from 2-12 days.
The boat is certainly built for capacity and tracks very well. It is not the most agile boat in moving waters and the composite material is not really designed for running large rapids (ie. Rocks). We have taken it through short runs up to Class II rapids while tripping and it has done the job. We have also paddled it in tidal currents and it has provided surprising stability when caught in thermal winds opposing tidal currents on the coast of BC (however, this was unplanned and not recommended...)
The capacity is second to none and has held gear, food etc for 12 day trip along with 2 labrador retrievers quite handily (with third seat removed). For a large boat it is also quite light for portages (~50lbs with third seat removed). We have also enjoyed it with the third seat installed for taking others around on short day trips.
The lightweight materials do require some maintenance and I have give the hull a light sanding and finished with spar varnish (as per recommendation from manufacturer) every year and the material has stood up. The boat is very well used however, still looks like new. That being said we have treated it very well by always storing indoors and preventative maintenance as stated above.
I would highly recommend this boat especially for a tripping boat.
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