More on Keels

by Steve on September 20, 2011


This image is a testament to several points:

Why you don’t want a keel under you on a river.

The durability of good old marine enamel paint and wood canvas construction in general.

Why you don’t run rivers around here in August.

The flash accentuated the scratches none of which actually went through the paint. Some of you are undoubtedly thinking “Why on earth would he run a river in a wood canvas canoe?” For the same reason drivers of high performance cars occasionally mash the accelerator to the floor – what’s the point of owning something if you never use it for its intended purpose? After a few seasons I’ll sand the hull and repaint – good as new. Scratch up plastic, Kevlar, or fiberglass and it stays that way.

Did you know that with a pole you can push your way upriver with very little effort? Back when streams and rivers were the major transportation routes wooden canoes were poled upriver to deliver supplies (your mother probably told you to never stand in a canoe) and then run back downstream. Using a pole to slow your way downstream and reposition the boat is called snubbing. Standing also gives you a much better view of upcoming rapids. Snub your way down to the top of a rapid or shoal, position the boat above the line you want to take, then sit or kneel to take up the paddle and shoot the line. Good times.

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