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Reviews for Freedom Tripper 17 Canoe by Bluewater Canoes


Rated: 8.88/10 Based On: 8 Reviews

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02-26-2014
Submitted by: Ed SmithSend Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     I've owned this canoe for over 15 years and used it for flat water day trips and up to 2 weeks of camping. It's served us very well. I think it paddles better with a camping load. It's easy to get blown around empty (wife and I weigh a little over 300 lbs combined).
My only complaint is I wish it tracked a little better but in tight places it turns easily.

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07-20-2011
Submitted by: View Profile Send Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     My wife and I have had a Tripper 17 for a couple of seasons and have used it in a variety of ways. We have paddled several different canoes over the past 30 years including the Pat Moore Peter Pond, Mad River Malecite, and Mad River Explorers (glass and Royalex). We are vigorous paddlers and our total weight is about 260#. The seats are not original, so I will note that both are about 10 inches above the floor of the boat.

This boat measures about 13.375" deep and jigs about 30.75" at the 4" waterline. The layup is nylon/kevlar with gellcoat. The weight 50#. As a tripper, it is small. We have had it on choppy lakes with about 400# in it and were getting an occasional slop over the rail. The speed is good but it is a rockered hull and will go into a slow spin rather than coast in a straight line when the paddlers stop paddling. Stability is adequate but not totally relaxed. The maneuverability makes it a very nice river tripper for class I, twisty water.

Paddled without a load it is speedy, very maneuverable, and durable. Stability is a little vague at our seat heights but kneeling or a foot brace works wonders. It will handle easy class 2 whitewater and is fast enough for paddling upstream on easier rivers. The gellcoat is extremely chip resistant and the layup can take some impact though is not Royalex. It tracks well enough to paddle hit and switch and is stable enough for us both to paddle hard on the same side without drama.

We have had it out in 18 to 24 inch surf and it did very well, dry enough to go out with some baling, fast enough to surf in, and maneuverable enough to make a quick turn at the beach to go back out. Compared to the Malecite it is equal speed, much more maneuverable, runs noticeably dryer in sloppy water but is more wind blown. Compared to the Explorers, it is much faster, turns better, is less stable and forgiving, and has much less capacity.

Because this canoe is light weight speedy and a fair whitewater and tripping boat, it is our best all-rounder.

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07-16-2009
Submitted by: JaS
Rating: 10 of 10

     I purchased a Tripper in fiberglass and the boat is the fastest boat I ever paddled and moves with so little effort. It felt tippy at first so I lowered the seat about 1 inch and its a lot better now. It takes a little practice to keep it tracking straight but once you do the boat is unbelievable, so fast and a joy to paddle and the sray rails on it worked excellent in rapids. A dream boat
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03-19-2008
Submitted by: Pat RSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     It will easily go over 10 km/h (6 mph) and cruises at 7 km/h. It turns quickly and does need some experience and attention to keep it straight when not loaded. It is a little wet with it's low profile but the compromise is well worth it. At just over 50 pounds and with a perfectly balanced carrying yoke portages become less of a chore. The special edition that is finished in cherry is beautiful enough to distract you from your surroundings.
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03-18-2008
Submitted by: Pat R
Rating: 9 of 10

     Cherry gunwales, yoke, kneeling thwart and seats make it beautiful and comfortable. Made of vacuum packed Nylon Kevlar and has knee pads.

It will easily go over 10 km/h (6mph) and cruise at 7 km/h. It turns quickly and does sometimes demand attention to keep it straight. It is a little wet with it`s low profile but this aspect also has it`s advantages. At just over 50 pounds and with a perfectly balanced carrying yoke, portages are as pleasant as they can be.

I rate it a 9 because nothing is perfect but this canoe is surely close.

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03-04-2002
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 7 of 10

     I paddled one of these canoes in a spring run-off race that had grade 1-2 water and many oxbows. We were very impressed with the speed. We won our race. However, I felt that the rocker is overkill for a boat that seems to be meant for tripping more than whitewater. I assume that it would track better with a loaded canoe though. However, in the type of water that we were in, we found it esay to oversteer. The result was excessive energy used to make it track. It is advertised as a boat for the experienced tripper. We found it stable; it would be more user friendly and almost a perfect boat if it had the rocker reduced.This kevlar canoe also lacked some rigidity with the seats wobbly for the kind of hard paddling that we were doing. I like all other aspects of this boat. Good looking, and dryin chop due to the nice spray rail.
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06-18-2001
Submitted by: xavierSend Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     We looked around and tested quite a few boats, and after 5 years with the tripper we are still extremely pleased with this boat in all aspects. great for day to week trips, its fast, well constructed (proven through a few unplanned hits), great boat well worth the money (I would buy it again in a second)
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10-17-2000
Submitted by: Tom
Rating: 10 of 10

     Killer boat...this is a magic canoe. It's narrow for it's length...intended for paddlers with a little experience (and - when my 70 pound dog moves around in this boat you will notice it more than in other tandems). If you are willing to kneel in it - it will reward you. If you don't like to kneel you might find it a bit tippy. This is a fast boat...it will handily smoke my Bell Northstar - and the Northstar is a hot boat. The quality of Bluewater boats is absolutely top notch...I haven't found any better-made boats (they use epoxy reson - it's harder to manufacturer but makes a stronger and lighter boat. This boat handles wind and waves extremely well - lots of fun to take out on a windy day. The boat turns beautifully too - very capable and also very graceful. This boat even makes an incredibly good solo boat - fast, easy to paddle, and also wonderful for freestyling. This may not be the ideal first boat (nor the ideal family boat) but if you have a little experience and want something with great performance and workmanship I think you'll love this boat.
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