Submitted: 01-21-2004 by heronsflight
I am a Master Maine Guide for Sea Kayaking and work alone, with an outfitter, and race besides. I have owned a kevlar Isle au Haut for over two years. I honestly can say that I use it over most of my other boats or those that I have access to (Wilderness Systems, Current Designs, Hurricane).
It is easy to carry especially after a long paddle when you are tired. It follows a line easily and performs well whether using a regular touring paddle, a wing paddle, a bentshaft paddle, or a greenland style. The chines make it very stable (great for rescues of others). I don't weigh very much, yet I find that it tracks well regardless of wind, wave, and other conditions even without a rudder or skeg. Before I have to deal with weathercocking, others have lowered their rudders or deployed their skegs.
I have raced in it and found that it wasn't quite as fast as some of the 15' boats, and without a rudder very difficult to turn a quick hard hairpin turn needed sometimes in racing.
I would prefer to have a few of the extras found on the Eggamoggin (day hatch and special cockpit storage). My biggest complaint comes in the back band/rest assembly. It just doesn't work as installed or even changed. I would suggest that the rear of the coaming be lowered to allow easier greenland style rolls and to change the backband/rest to a different model and installation.