My husband and I own both boats. My husband paddles the Shearwater sitting, but I paddle it kneeling. Yes, it is large, but we are not small people, and we both like the boat. It's stable, easy to turn, easy to paddle seated, great for Adirondacks camping, pleasant to paddle, can put a dog in it, and it's lightweight to pick up. My boat is the Osprey, which I mainly paddle kneeling. The Osprey is extremely responsive. I don't think of it as a smaller Shearwater, and I usually paddle it kneeling, rather than seated.
We specifically bought our Shearwater for canoe camping, not for day tripping, and as a stable platform for my husband to sit and paddle. It serves its purpose well for us. Ask yourself where you are going to use the boat you want to buy next, and what you are going to use it for. That helped us narrow down the choices.
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