Posted by: plaidpaddler on Jun-09-11 4:32 PM (EST)
The Minnnesota II is a great tripping canoe that will go fast with a load and will carry what you are suggesting. But your past experience in AlumiCraft and the other mentioned canoes suggest you might be more comfortable in a more stable canoe.
Test paddle both the MN-II and Champlain. The Champlain is 18' in length, but much fuller over its length than the MN-II. It was designed for big guys and big loads. It is not a slug by any means, it will outdistance all the other canoes you mention with your specified load. Only the MN-II has more speed and there is a loss of stability vs the Champlain to get that speed.