Submitted: 07-28-2003 by LGraubner
I bought this canoe 4 years ago at my local REI store. I was looking for a canoe for my family (3 young sons aged 2, 5 & 7 at the time) that wouldn't break the bank and would give us lots of fun paddling. The boat has been out lots on area lakes and slow rivers. It is heavy, ponderous and not nimble in the least.
But when I bought it, I didn't know why I would want more or less rocker, bow height, depth, etc. I was a canoe novice.
It carries a lot of gear (1,100 lbs.) which was good for a week-long trip on the Buffalo River in Arkansas. My oldest son is now 11 and we had to work to paddle this beast for a week. It wasn't as bad as some of the other boats in the trip and the high sides were good for some of the rapids we ran. I didn't get any water in the boat, even heavily loaded.
The boat weighs 85 lbs. which is simply too much. Maybe someday I'll give it to my teenage sons, but for now, I lend it to church groups and I've added more boats to my "fleet" to give me what I want in a canoe.
I recently paddled a Merrimack Kevlar 16' Prospector and ordered a NovaCraft 17' Prospector. The difference between those boats and my Old Town Discovery 169 is night and day.
I also built a 15' cedar strip Bob's Special. This boat is great for fishing and is also much more nimble than my Old Town.
I rate this boata 6 because I bought it in my ignorance and wish now I had purchased a lighter boat with more flexibility. At the same time, what did I expect. So now I own 5 kayaks and 3 canoes. I'm well on my way to owning my own fleet.