Hunting With A Canoe: Which Option Is Best For You?

Whether your after deer, ducks, turkeys, or a different animal a canoe is a great way to get you from A to B. if you are in the market for a canoe for the upcoming season then give this article a read. I have been using a canoe for the past 2 seasons here in the Midwest and it has become an important tool for me. Not only is hunting with a canoe fun and a nice change of pace from walking to your stand but it is invaluable when accessing hard to reach locations on public or private.

Personally I think a canoe is a better option than a kayak and have written another article going more in depth on the why and how hunting with a canoe can help you become a better mobile hunter. This article though will be focused on different types of canoes and which one would be the right fit for you.

The article will cover the following options.

  • The Solo Hunter
  • Ultralight And Compact
  • The Workhorse
  • Budget Canoe

From currently owning an older model Old Town Sportsman I can tell you firsthand the quality of their canoes. This is why you will see multiple Old Town canoes listed in the article below. I’ve put in the time and research to provide you with information on great products that are worth your money and will last you a long time. Old Town is the largest and oldest canoe and kayak manufacturer and are produced in Maine.

With that, let’s get into it.

 

The Solo Hunter: Old Town Discovery 119 Solo Sportsman

 

 

If you’re looking for a single person do it all canoe this is a great option. The Solo Sportsman was designed specifically for hunting and fishing and has plenty of room for tackle box, poles, decoys, guns, tree stand, and all the other gear you may have.

Features:

  • Recessed Thrawt Accessory Rack: Can Customize
  • Padded Kayak-Style Contoured Seat: Adjustable Backrest and Padded Armrests
  • 2 Flush Mounted Rod Holders
  • Adjustable Foot Braces
  • Open and Spacious Hull For Gear
  • Weight Capacity: 350lbs
  • Weight: 57lbs
  • Length: 11 Feet 9 Inches
  • 2 Camo Options
  • Durable 3 Layer Polyethylene Construction
  • Made In the USA
  • Lifetime Hull Warranty

 

 

This is the perfect hybrid between a canoe and a kayak. At 11’9″ it can easily fit on top of a car, SUV, or in the bed of a truck. I will say the weight capacity is on the low side but that is the trade off for a smaller sized canoe. If your interested in the Discovery 119 Solo but can do without the creature comforts Old Town does offer a more basic model.

 

 

Ultralight and Compact: Inflatable Sevylor Ogden 2 Person

Heading out on a backpacking float trip and want to keep weight down? Maybe you just need to cross a creek or drainage ditch that is too deep to wade across for accessing a spot? Need a space-saving canoe that can still get you where you need to go? For the right situation an inflatable canoe can be the best option.

 

 

Features:

  • Heavy Duty PVC Construction
  • Polyester Cover To Provide Protection From Punctures
  • Multiple Air Chambers: Will Stay Inflated In The Event Of A Puncture
  • Airtight System: No Leaks
  • Adjustable Elevated Seats
  • Carrying Handles
  • Includes Pump, Air Gauge, 2 Paddles, Carrying Case
  • Weight Capacity: 355lbs
  • Weight: 27lbs
  • Length: 10 Feet 3 Inches

No doubt an inflatable canoe does not have the durability of a hard sided canoe but at only 27lbs if weight is a concern this is a great option. Also, coming in at a cheaper price than a normal canoe it would be hard to pass up.

 

The Workhorse: Old Town Discovery Sport 15 Flat Stern

This is the canoe for the guy or girl who wants it all. A canoe you can take hunting, fishing, camping, family trips, etc. No matter where you want to go or what you bring this canoe can will get you and your gear there with no problem.

 

 

Features:

  • Square Stern: Handles Up To A 4hp Outboard Motor
  • Dry and Stable Ride: Stabilizing Chine, High Side Walls, Wide Design
  • 3 Nylon Webbed Seats: Fast Drying, Comfortable, UV Resistant
  • User Capacity: 3 People Without Motor, 4 People With Motor
  • Weight Capacity: 1,650lbs Without Motor, 800lbs With Motor
  • Weight: 113lbs
  • Length: 15 Feet 3 Inches
  • Durable 3 Layer Polyethylene Construction
  • Made In USA
  • Lifetime Hull Warranty

 

 

Yes, this is a heavier canoe but with the ability to haul almost a ton it is a fair trade off.

 

The Workhorse 2.0: Old Town Discovery 158

Like the Discovery Sport 15 but want something a little lighter? This would be the canoe you want to check out. At 26lbs lighter than the Sport 15 it can still haul over 1,000lbs. The Discovery 158 follows the original canoe design and does not have a flat stern.

 

 

Features:

  • Sleek Design Allows For Easy Handling
  • 2 Nylon Webbed Seats: Fast Drying, Comfortable, UV Resistant
  • Weight Capacity: 1,150lbs
  • Weight: 87lbs
  • Length: 15 Feet 8 Inches
  • Durable 3 Layer Polyethylene Construction
  • Made In USA
  • Lifetime Hull Warranty

 

 

At only 3lbs heavier but capable of hauling 385lbs more it gives the Sun Dolphin Scout SS below a run for its money.

 

Budget Canoe: Sun Dolphin Scout SS

If you’re looking for just the basics then this is the canoe for you. Nothing fancy here but it will get the job done and at a price of approx $550 you cannot beat it for a hard sided canoe. With the flat stern you can easily hook up a trolling motor or small outboard to increase the distance you can cover.

 

 

Features:

  • User Capacity: 3 People
  • 6 Rod Holders: Built Into Canoe
  • Length: 14 feet
  • Weight: 84lbs
  • Weight Capacity: 765lbs

 

 

One thing I have learned from my canoe is that plastic seats are uncomfortable after a couple hours. Not only from a cushion and support standpoint but I have noticed if my shorts get wet I will become uncomfortable after a while. There isn’t any room for air to circulate and dry out. Not a deal breaker but something to keep in mind.

 

Conclusion

No matter what option you go with, hunting with a canoe is a great way to differentiate yourself from the other hunters while giving you an advantage over them regarding access and ability to cover more ground. Water barriers are one of the top reasons why hunters will not access public land.

If you have any questions below regarding hunting with a canoe or one of these options mentioned below please leave a comment below. I would be happy to help.

Stay safe out there! Always have a life jacket on you while on the water.

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