-- Last Updated: Jun-10-12 8:36 AM EST --
No offense but I have to disagree with that for three reasons. First, he's 13. He's small, and it would be a mistake to make the boat wider and heavier. What he really needs is a boat that fits him. Second, being small, he'll be able to shift his weight all over the place in a narrow boat without tipping. My first solo canoe was a Wenonah Vagabond, and I was warned about how tippy it would be. Darned thing felt like an aircraft carrier to me, impossible to tip over as long as my head stayed inside the gunwales, and I probably weigh twice as much as a fit 13-year-old. Third, the kid will learn quickly enough how to keep the boat upright. The biggest problem is likely to be whether Dad is lucky enough that the kid will "take" to canoeing and stick with it through the stage of learning to paddle in a halfway-decent fashion, but I only say that based on "average" kids - I don't know this one. Kayaks are a lot easier for kids, and are more easily found which fit them well, but it would warm this semi-geezer's heart if the kid ended up in the right boat and learned to love paddling the thing.