Submitted: 12-12-2004 by 50 DOS
I have had a Coleman 17ft Ram X since 1992. I've paddled it in Lake Ontario, in all conditions including the quick fierce storms that spring up there. I bounced down various creeks in the Adirondacks. I paddled for miles on the Erie Canal. I have countless hours on VA Eastern Shore salt marshes, Cheasapeake Bay creeks, and have even surfed her on the Ocean Side on 4 ft waves. (I tried anyways). Eastern North Carolina rivers and estuary's have been a favorite. Whitewatering on the James River near Richmond and some fun 3-4 rating rapids on the Appomatox River in Petersburg VA. I have rigged sails for it for the lakes and oceans and I carry a 13 ft pole for poling up rivers and rapids.
It is not a fancy canoe but it will carry tons of gear and three 220lb'ers albeit with only a few inches to spare on the gunwale. I am ready to graduate to a "fancier model" but I'll always keep my Coleman 17. It has quite a few scratches on her bottom due to scraping up on oyster bars, river gravel, and flying off the car once. The scratches are the only damage sustained after 12 yrs of abuse and neglect. I've gone through many paddles and she keeps going. I love it for extended camping trips and often carry a 3.5 hp outboard bolted to a 2x4. I highly recommend her if you are starting out or want a tough dependable slow boat. See you on the water.