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Submitted: 06-28-2004 by wildernesswebb
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Mad River now calls this an Explorer 14tt. Unsure why the name change, since this adds yet another "Explorer" to their line, confusing things greatly! I used this boat both tandem and solo on Ozark streams. Initial stability very good, secondary excellent. Very good boat to fish out of, if you fish on rivers. This boat is not designed for lakes! Tracking is poor, requiring frequent corrective strokes, especially with a bit of wind. The boat works well as a solo canoe with the canoe turned arround and sitting in the bow seat facing the stern. It actually is one of the best "Tandem" boats that can be used solo very easily. A few pounds of ballast in front, and you're good to go. The St. Croix I owned arrived with some hull deformity, probably due to the polyethylene boat having been hauled improperly by the courier. It did not seem to affect the paddling, and the deformation was minor. Fit and finish were very good for such an inexpensive boat. Lots of "Bang for the buck," in my opinion. If you need a boat to paddle rivers, especially Ozark streams, both solo and tandem, this is the best boat I've paddled for that use. I'll reiterate, don't buy it for the lake! I give this canoe a "9" if using it for it's intended purpose, with "Extra credit" given due to the fact that it performs so well both tandem and solo. It is slow, it doesn't track well, and it's a tad heavy for it's size. But for day in, day out, abusive use on rocky, twisty streams it's an excellent choice.
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