Savage River Harmony ? (Read 315 times)
jac
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Savage River Harmony ?
Oct 9th, 2023 at 8:34pm
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Long time lurker here - thanks for all the stories, recipes, pictures and recommendations!  I'm wondering if anyone has any experience/advice about the suitability of a Savage River Harmony (15 foot tandem weighing in at 28 pounds) for week long trips in the Q.  Having decided at age 70 that I needed a lighter canoe for portaging, I had decided on a SR Deep Creek, only to see a used Harmony for sale locally.  It would cost about half of what I would pay for a new DC and I could have it now.  My concerns are about stability primarily in big water and load capacity.  I don't want my love of a bargain to put a third boat in my garage that isn't right for the use I intended!  Happy to hear from anyone with an opinion, informed or not!
  
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Jimbo
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Re: Savage River Harmony ?
Reply #1 - Oct 10th, 2023 at 6:39pm
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jac,

I'm not familiar with this specific vessel but my instincts tell me it would never work for the way I travel... especially for a party of 2.  So, I'd have to echo your concerns about load capacity.  Admittedly, I'm a notorious "over-packer" and my motto: "If you don't bring it, you ain't got it" often gets me into trouble. 

On the other hand, it MIGHT work well for you IF: 1) you intended to use it as a solo boat, OR 2) you are a single-portage packing sort of guy. 

Me? I have plenty of challenges fitting what I need as a solo paddler into my Wenonah Prism... which is a full 1.5 feet LONGER than the one you're looking at.  Of course, I'm packing camp chairs, extra tarps, plenty of fishing gear, etc. & so on AND I'm usually out for at least 14 days at a time.

Savage River has a fine reputation for making very seaworthy boats.  Doing a little research on-line, about the only negative comment I discovered was over on BWCA.com.  The fellow who posted really liked his Savage River, for the most part.  About his only beef was that it "wasn't the fastest boat on the water"... which he went on to say that he didn't care about that, anyway.

If you are a "minimalist" OR a solo paddler, it would be my guess that it is likely a good deal for you. If you have some questions, it might be a good idea to request a "trial run."  Take the boat out on a local lake & pack it like you would for your typical Northwoods week-long adventure.  That should address whatever concerns you might have.

That's my 2 cents worth, anyhow.  Good luck with your decision!

Jimbo   Cool
  
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solotripper
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Re: Savage River Harmony ?
Reply #2 - Oct 10th, 2023 at 8:18pm
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Quote:
If you are a "minimalist" OR a solo paddler, it would be my guess that it is likely a good deal for you. If you have some questions, it might be a good idea to request a "trial run."  Take the boat out on a local lake & pack it like you would for your typical Northwoods week-long adventure.  That should address whatever concerns you might have.


That's good advice from Jimbo. If possible that will tell you more than other's telling you how that canoe works for them.
  I solo in a SR 16 tandem because I like to keep my packs below the gunnels. My packs have side pockets I added. A narrow solo canoe for the way I pack doesn't work for me. I like the ease of loading and how stable it rides. Side by side with a true solo,  same weight, I won't be able to keep up, but I won't be that far behind. My double paddle works for me as well. Other's hate them.

  You'll know real fast if that canoe fits your style of tripping. If you plan on soloing in it, paddle from the front seat sitting backwards, that will help with control.
  
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Solus
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Re: Savage River Harmony ?
Reply #3 - Oct 11th, 2023 at 12:40am
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I own a Savage River- build quality is exceptional. If you are looking at the Harmony for a tandem tripper I'd be cautious- not loads of space to throw gear. It the intended use is for solo travel I think I'd jump on the Harmony and consider a center mounted seat.
  
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jac
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Re: Savage River Harmony ?
Reply #4 - Oct 30th, 2023 at 11:26pm
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Reporting back - I bought it.  Measured carefully and decided that load capacity would be manageable.  Didn't have a chance to paddle it, so I negotiated an even lower price.  Worst case - next year after some trial runs, I might decide it was not the boat for me, but at the price I paid, I won't lose much.  And, who knows? Maybe it will work fine.  I appreciate those who shared their wisdom and opinions!  Maybe you'll see me in QPP next year!  Thanks all.
  
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