BWCA TomT - Your Swift Canoe/Kayak Boundary Waters Listening Point - General Discussion
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WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 03:27PM  
Prior to getting a canoe to take on my last trip, I'd been a kayaker for a long time. I like it. A few years ago I had noticed the Swift Pack boats on a youtube channel (Joe Robinet) and I thought "BRILLIANT!". Until then I had noticed several canoe/kayak hybrids but didn't think they had hit the mark (my personal one) just yet. The Swift's look like they do.

So ... how do you like yours? I noticed it in a trip report I just read. How long did you spend in a canoe before getting that? Care to compare and contrast?
 
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01/20/2022 04:22PM  
Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it. I bought my next solo in 2001, a Blackhawk Starship which I used for 8 or so trips to canoe country. I loved that boat as it was big enough for 2 weeks of gear and my 50 lb. dog. Great boat but I'll be 62 this month so wanted to get an ultralight.

I bought this Swift Shearwater in 2019. It's big enough and at 32 lbs. exactly the weight I want. There's much to love about this boat but I will say the profile is not as low as the Blackhawk so it will catch more wind. The heavier lower to the water Blackhawk was so stable in a crosswind. Now, I need to pay attention to my trim. I bring 2 dry bags that I can fill with water if I need to trim an end. With 2 packs and a dog it's sometimes difficult to get it right in a wind.

That said, I love this boat. It should be my last tripping solo. They discontinued this model but can build one on order if you like. They still have the mold.

 
01/20/2022 04:41PM  
The swifts are great and the pack boat concept is appealing for good reason.
I'd also look at Placid Boatworks, the Northstar Trillium and perhaps the Savage River line. But I think Placid has the most similar hulls to the Swift packs...and they are lighter. A couple of the Savage rivers can be built at 20 lbs and even less.
 
01/20/2022 04:53PM  
TomT: "Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it."


Oh, and you don't think we're going to nibble at this one? Beans, spill!
 
dschult2
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01/20/2022 05:32PM  
I'm not Tom but IMHO Swift makes the best canoes hands down. And their beautiful to boot. I love my 2 (Prospector 14 and Keewaydin 14 pack). Not cheap but well worth it. Here are a couple video reviews from my YouTube channel.

Keewaydin 14 pack

Prospector 14
 
WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 07:43PM  
Thanks! I'm a heavier guy, even if I'm in great shape, so I may need one that rides higher. On my Northwind when I turned it around to go solo I had to fill up some drybags to keep from doing wheelies. Thanks for the response!

TomT: "Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it. I bought my next solo in 2001, a Blackhawk Starship which I used for 8 or so trips to canoe country. I loved that boat as it was big enough for 2 weeks of gear and my 50 lb. dog. Great boat but I'll be 62 this month so wanted to get an ultralight.


I bought this Swift Shearwater in 2019. It's big enough and at 32 lbs. exactly the weight I want. There's much to love about this boat but I will say the profile is not as low as the Blackhawk so it will catch more wind. The heavier lower to the water Blackhawk was so stable in a crosswind. Now, I need to pay attention to my trim. I bring 2 dry bags that I can fill with water if I need to trim an end. With 2 packs and a dog it's sometimes difficult to get it right in a wind.


That said, I love this boat. It should be my last tripping solo. They discontinued this model but can build one on order if you like. They still have the mold.

"
 
WonderMonkey
distinguished member(781)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
01/20/2022 07:44PM  
sns: "The swifts are great and the pack boat concept is appealing for good reason.
I'd also look at Placid Boatworks, the Northstar Trillium and perhaps the Savage River line. But I think Placid has the most similar hulls to the Swift packs...and they are lighter. A couple of the Savage rivers can be built at 20 lbs and even less."


I will certainly look at those. I'll probably purchase in 2023.
 
WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 07:45PM  
sns: "TomT: "Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it."
Oh, and you don't think we're going to nibble at this one? Beans, spill!"


Yeah!
 
WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 07:46PM  
You make a fine Tom substitute! Thanks for the videos, I've queued them up to watch.

dschult2: "I'm not Tom but IMHO Swift makes the best canoes hands down. And their beautiful to boot. I love my 2 (Prospector 14 and Keewaydin 14 pack). Not cheap but well worth it. Here are a couple video reviews from my YouTube channel.


Keewaydin 14 pack


Prospector 14 "
 
jillpine
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01/20/2022 08:05PM  
Tom, curious about the yoke you’re using on the Swift.
Thanks!
 
WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 08:11PM  
sns: "The swifts are great and the pack boat concept is appealing for good reason.
I'd also look at Placid Boatworks, the Northstar Trillium and perhaps the Savage River line. But I think Placid has the most similar hulls to the Swift packs...and they are lighter. A couple of the Savage rivers can be built at 20 lbs and even less."


The Placids do appear to be closest to the Swifts. I may have to find an outdoor show where all of them are so I can put my hands on them. Not many comparison places here in SE Ohio.
 
01/20/2022 08:59PM  
jillpine: "Tom, curious about the yoke you’re using on the Swift.
Thanks!
"


They give us 2 options. The conventional clamp on style and this new design that has threads installed in the gunnels on each side where you screw in to secure the yoke. I used this style but was a dumbass and broke the threads on one side this year. If you're not hard on your gear I would go with the screw in yoke. If you're a bull in a China Shop type then go with the conventional clamp on.
 
01/20/2022 09:03PM  
sns: "TomT: "Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it."



Oh, and you don't think we're going to nibble at this one? Beans, spill!"


I was young, dumb, and didn't understand the power of moving water. In Quetico it rained every day of my route for 8 days. The portages were flooded and rivlets flowed down to the lakes.

I came to a creek flowing out of Isabella toward North Bay. Not the twisty turny one but the other one. Normally you portage alongside it but because of the flood conditions, after portaging my packs first, I got in the empty canoe and proceeded down. All went fine until near the outlet. There was a little drop of 2 feet maybe in rushing thigh deep water. So in all my brilliance I decided to get out and let it ride over the drop and I'd catch up in the eddy.

It went over, hit a rock and turned sideways wrapping around the rock. I waded in and after a struggle was able to free it. The gunnels were mangled pretty bad but the real problem was the foot long "L" shape tear in the stern.

Luckily my last night on Isabella I shared the site with a couple who got there close to dark. They were paddling out the same way to Moose Lake so we travelled together. I ended up taping the gash and riding and paddling in the middle of their canoe. They were lifesavers because if I was still alone I would have been in a heap of trouble with no way to communicate with anyone. I don't enjoy talking about this event as it really sucked. It was a beautiful brand new white Autumn Mist and I was a big idiot. I sold it to a guy who worked at the Chicagoland Canoe Base for $50.

 
01/20/2022 09:04PM  
This might be a good option.
 
WonderMonkey
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01/20/2022 10:05PM  
Ouch!

I know the creek you are talking about, we did the portage next to it.

You were fortunate that you could do a fix.

TomT: "sns: "TomT: "Sure! I bought a Sawyer Autumn Mist solo in 1987, took it to Quetico and promptly totalled it."



Oh, and you don't think we're going to nibble at this one? Beans, spill!"



I was young, dumb, and didn't understand the power of moving water. In Quetico it rained every day of my route for 8 days. The portages were flooded and rivlets flowed down to the lakes.


I came to a creek flowing out of Isabella toward North Bay. Not the twisty turny one but the other one. Normally you portage alongside it but because of the flood conditions, after portaging my packs first, I got in the empty canoe and proceeded down. All went fine until near the outlet. There was a little drop of 2 feet maybe in rushing thigh deep water. So in all my brilliance I decided to get out and let it ride over the drop and I'd catch up in the eddy.


It went over, hit a rock and turned sideways wrapping around the rock. I waded in and after a struggle was able to free it. The gunnels were mangled pretty bad but the real problem was the foot long "L" shape tear in the stern.


Luckily my last night on Isabella I shared the site with a couple who got there close to dark. They were paddling out the same way to Moose Lake so we travelled together. I ended up taping the gash and riding and paddling in the middle of their canoe. They were lifesavers because if I was still alone I would have been in a heap of trouble with no way to communicate with anyone. I don't enjoy talking about this event as it really sucked. It was a beautiful brand new white Autumn Mist and I was a big idiot. I sold it to a guy who worked at the Chicagoland Canoe Base for $50.


"
 
WonderMonkey
distinguished member(781)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
01/20/2022 10:06PM  
boonie: " This might be a good option."

Well well well! Look at that! This year I'm scheduled for a fly-in fishing trip, but I'll mark that page.
 
01/21/2022 06:21AM  
I always seem to have something going on then too, but one of these times I'd like to make it.
 
beanpole
member (36)member
 
01/23/2022 04:35PM  
Not TomT but both myself and significant other have Swift Packboats. Promptly bought after paddling a used Swift Keewaydin 16. We thought the canoe was so amazing the packboats had to be light years better than our Menards special kayaks. Perfect for gear and even great when you have nothing along with you. My other half is 6 ft 280 lbs and has no problem paddling his Swift Cruiser 15.8 - his packboat is just a half foot shorter than our canoe. The packboat (expedition kevlar) weighs 38 lbs and the canoe (kevlar) weighs 42 lbs. The seats are JUST so comfortable. The balance is incredible.

I do have some videos of us in the boats if you're bored. Bill Swift has some great videos showing what his boats can do if you check out YouTube.
 
WonderMonkey
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01/23/2022 04:57PM  
beanpole: "Not TomT but both myself and significant other have Swift Packboats. Promptly bought after paddling a used Swift Keewaydin 16. We thought the canoe was so amazing the packboats had to be light years better than our Menards special kayaks. Perfect for gear and even great when you have nothing along with you. My other half is 6 ft 280 lbs and has no problem paddling his Swift Cruiser 15.8 - his packboat is just a half foot shorter than our canoe. The packboat (expedition kevlar) weighs 38 lbs and the canoe (kevlar) weighs 42 lbs. The seats are JUST so comfortable. The balance is incredible.


I do have some videos of us in the boats if you're bored. Bill Swift has some great videos showing what his boats can do if you check out YouTube."


I'm 6'2" and bounce between 240-275 lbs, so similar to your husband at times. And yes, I am bored enough to look at your videos!
 
beanpole
member (36)member
 
01/23/2022 05:11PM  
I edit and post my videos more for myself than an audience. (It's something I can enjoy when I can no longer trip.)

The test run with our gear before we took the packboats to the BWCA:

Video of too much wind

One of the first outings in the boats:

First trip in the packboats
 
WonderMonkey
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01/23/2022 09:22PM  
beanpole: "I edit and post my videos more for myself than an audience. (It's something I can enjoy when I can no longer trip.)


The test run with our gear before we took the packboats to the BWCA:


Video of too much wind


One of the first outings in the boats:


First trip in the packboats "


Thanks! I'll watch these tomorrow.
 
WonderMonkey
distinguished member(781)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
01/23/2022 09:26PM  
WonderMonkey: "beanpole: "I edit and post my videos more for myself than an audience. (It's something I can enjoy when I can no longer trip.)



The test run with our gear before we took the packboats to the BWCA:



Video of too much wind



One of the first outings in the boats:



First trip in the packboats "



Thanks! I'll watch these tomorrow."


Those links didn't work but I was able to get to the videos.
 
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