I have been terrible at taking pictures this past 5 months, although I have some that I will put together in a random batch.  But this blog is not just about photography, it is also for all my hobbies.   That being said, most of my hobbies are friendly to photography 🙂

During my trip to Bermuda in June, I spent a lot of time researching solo canoes.   I have never really enjoyed my kayak.  I know many people love them but I just never felt at home in one.  I have grown up around canoes and a number of years ago I picked up the kayak for those solo days.   Those solo days have become my normal with very few people available to go canoeing with me.   And camping, forget it.   The kayak just does not fit my gear, which I don’t feel like replacing.  It can’t be portaged.  It is a pain to get up on the roof of the car.   It is a royal pain to get in and out of.  And I get super stiff and uncomfortable in them.   I do like them for photography as you can steer with the rudder and they are super fast and quiet.   But overall not for me.

The frame completed.  Cherry accents.

I was horrified to see the prices on new solo canoes.   They cost as much, if not more, then a good tandem.    I basically gave up and was spending time on how to convert my 17′ tandem to be more friendly to a solo paddler.   In my search I came across a guy who was rebuilding a Scott Trillium (also what I have) and digging deeper I found his website.  Backcountry Custom Canoe.   (Currently down as he is rebuilding it – stay tuned) I feel in love with what he builds.  My goal was to get a new boat for spring 2020.   I spent numerous hours researching skin-on-frame boats and talked to many of his customers.   I then had a long chat with Jon himself and I made up my mind to purchase one.   I won’t get into pricing but the boats are significantly less expensive.   He indicated it would be ready mid-Aug but after talking to his customers I knew this was going to be unlikely haha.   He is not know for meeting deadlines – but as I found out this week, it is completely worth the wait.

Skinning the boat with ballistic nylon
Skin in place, next is goop’ing it 🙂
Drying in Jon’s livingroom.  Gotta love a craftsmen who brings it into his home.

Many emails back and forth and a very long phone call and he knew what to build me.   He really does customize the boat for each customer.   You get what you need, it is not a box store where you buy the same canoe over and over.   I took possession of my new boat this week and spent every sunny day out in it.    28km’s over 3 days of paddling to get a good feel and to build my confidence level on how it reacts.   I am now hoping for a clear long weekend before winter hits to get out on a nice long camping trip.    Fingers crossed.

Signature seat strap.


Taking possession 🙂

My goal was spring 2020, got it fall 2019 and got enough time in it for me to fall in love with this boat.   I see a winter ahead of trip planning for next year.

It is so light, about 27lbs
Yoke not even needed.   So light.   I think I am actually smiling, despite the rain.
Maiden run early the next morning.
Isn’t she beautiful?

Now a bunch of shots from out on the Rideau River over 3 days of paddling 🙂 .  I just missed the leaf colours by a week but still lovely time of year to be on the water.