Submitted: 11-28-2004 by BCcanoeist
I bought the Vagabond this past summer after experience with a compromise tandem/solo, the Clipper Tripper S (16'6"X33"). The Vagabond is a much better solo boat. It is both more responsive and less susceptible to winds with its considerably lower profile as well as shorter length.
My only reservation is that the good tolerance for winds leads me into waves that make me nervous. I have experimented in shallows and find a distinct point of no-return in the righting moment. This is very unlike the rounder-bottomed Tipper S. It can be heeled well over and remain stable. I have wondered about the oil-canning of the bottom others have mentioned and I have noticed. I weigh 185 lbs. My boat is the more flexible Royalex (or is it Royalite?). I have wondered if its 'shallow arch' bottom becomes shallower, flatter, with flex? Could this be reduced with a strut between the seat and an inside keel, a keelson?
I am impressed that at least one reviewer, heavier than I, has used his boat in white water. I too have purchased and will be installing float bags; mostly in hopes of improving self rescuing capability for the coastal waters I like to paddle here around Vancouver Island (British Columbia). I am 'bucking the trend' here by not paddling a sea kayak.