Depends on the section you are paddling
Posted by: waterspyder on Apr-26-12 3:57 PM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Apr-26-12 4:05 PM EST --
As I'm section paddling the NFCT I've found that while one boat may work great for a part of the trail it may not be the best choice for other sections. As far as carries (portages) weight is going to be an issue and some of them like the one around Raquette Falls are not cart friendly. In other sections you wouldn't want to take anything but a tough royalex or plastic boat. Having said that the argosy would work on the NFCT but in some areas you are going to love the boat while in others you'll be dreaming of something else. I'd be willing to take the Argosy if I were through paddling knowing somedays it's the best choice and others I'd have to compromise.
The advantage of being a section paddler is that I can switch boats depending on where I'm paddling. A plastic kayak for shallow rocky areas, the Rapidfire for sections where rocks aren't an issue if there are carries (portages) and my seakayak for the larger lake sections.
No matter what boat you chose paddling the NFCT is great.
Almost forgot to mention - get the best cart you can find. Some of the portages are long and cart friendly. The trick if you are section paddling is to read the material put out by the NFCT and anything else you can before paddling that section to get a good idea of whether it's cart friendly and how long the carries are; if the carries are short you may want to just do two trips one carrying the boat and a second with you gear.