Submitted: 09-09-2002 by vw
Guess I'll put in my two cents. I give this canoe a 9, not because it's the best canoe out there, but because it's one of the best values out there.
I have had a Ram-X 15 since 1987 or so! Talk about a boat that has seen abuse. Initially I used this boat on the Erie Canal in NY, where launching almost always consisted of sliding it down a sleep slope of large rocks. For lack of a better location, the cannoe was stored outside, ucovered, through hot summers and cold winters for at least 10 years. I used the canoe heavily in the Genesee River and all the Finger Lakes. I remember once taking the canoe out on the south end of a lake in 40 mph gusts (not kidding), blowing from the north, just to see what it could do. I had a second paddler and all we were able to do was paddle into the middle of the lake and keep the canoe pointed into the waves and wind. It was a fun ride cresting over waves that were several feet high, and the canoe never took on more than a bit of water. I'm sure if we had turned broadside we would have been over immediately, but head on into the waves this canoe does an excellent job. It was definitely a confidence builder for future outings in not so rough a water.
Later on I moved to Indiana, and here I have used the canoe on large lakes with lots of boating traffic like Lake Monroe and Patoka Lake, and the White and Blue Rivers. Anyway, after almost 15 years of abuse, this canoe is scratched beyond belief, faded, etc.., but it works as well as it did the day I bought it. I think I paid around 200+ when I got it back in 87 and I can imagine anything that I have paid so little for and gotten so much enjoyment from. I agree it's heavy, and doesn't paddle like a $1000 canoe. I have paddled and portaged aluminum canoes that make you think you are paddling a pontoon boat when you go back to the Coleman. I'm a weightlifter and although I can get the canoe on a truck rack, it's not fun by myself. Still, I have decided that after 15 years I want a little more room and the ability to mount an engine (for long upstream runs), and what am I going to...the Pelican (Coleman) Gamefisher. I'll still have the weight issue, but after all I have been through with my first purchase, I know 100% that I'll get more than my moneys worth from this next purchase. I'll write a review of my new boat as soon as I get it shipped and can get it out on the water.