Your PakCanoe is an amazing craft. I love it, truly. On the Tat it performed beyond any of my expectations. It takes big waves better than anything I’ve paddled and it is fast, so making moves is easy – technical rapids, no problem at all.
The Tat is a very difficult river for canoeing, as the consequences of a capsize are much more in that extremely swift and glacial water. Not many people ever canoe this river for that reason, but also because to fly their canoes out is way too expensive, thus, the PakCanoe is the perfect craft (for a wheel plane take out and because it is so stable and well designed for big water).
About the PakCanoe 17.0
The PakCanoe is a bit of a challenge to put together the first time, but after that, it just gets really easy. Every buckle, elastic, etc. has a purpose and it is a feat of engineering how it all comes together into such a paddleable, stable, light craft, yet again packs up (really fast!) into a duffel bag or pack.
It might be a tiny bit slow on ferries and eddy turns, but tracks very well and is astonishingly fast to what you would expect as a result. It’s great for flat and whitewater.
It being so light, portaging is a breeze, compared to other plastic boats. Though I would suggest selling a sculpted yoke with the boat, rather than the straight one. Much more comfortable and easier to keep the boat balanced.
It really performs well in boily water with funky hydraulics, like in canyons and large volume rivers. It was the perfect boat to run the Tatshenshini/Alsek with, for instance. Its “slinky” nature keeps it from being grabbed as violently by the water coming in different directions, and is very stable for that reason. The flex in the PakCanoe 17.0 makes for a smooth, stable ride in big standing waves and pushing through stoppers. Even if you do end up full of water, and I mean full, you feel stable from the flotation on either side as it keeps you high enough to paddle to an eddy and bail.
I truly mean it when I say I would take this boat anywhere, anytime.
by Laurel Archer