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Submitted: 07-27-2013 by tugboat
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I am new to canoeing having only been in the USA for just over a year. I live in Tennessee and looking at the rivers in this state decided a canoe was the best option to follow my hobby of photography. I researched looking for a canoe that would meet my needs in the years ahead. I did not want to lose my camera equipment so a stable platform was needed.

I am now 63 years old so light weight was essential in order to get it on the roof of my vehicle. And it had to be pleasing on the eye. I made contact with Randy at Merrimack canoes and was invited to meet him at his workshop. He made myself and my wife feel very welcome, like old friends. He showed us the production progress, from the beginning to the end. The different canoes that he produces and, he took the time to explain their different paddling characteristics of each model. He also provided a lot of information on paddling the local area.

I was initially looking at the Osprey designed by his grandfather, but eventually decided on the Tennessean. A compromise between ease of paddle and stability. I have been out on the rivers several times and unfortunately put a few scratches on the beautiful finish by hitting a few submerged rocks. But I purchased this work of art to use not look at. Despite my novice status, at no time do I feel unsafe paddling alone, and my cameras have remained dry.

It is very responsive for a lone novice paddler, and also for a duo. Plenty of room for my gear, easy to connect my camera mount to and a very nice backrest to just sit there and fish. I took part in our local paddlefest for local children. A lot of comments and admirers of the canoe before during and after the 8 mile paddle.

Anyone looking for a quality canoe, made by a gentleman craftsman or just looking for sound advise should contact Randy at Merrimack Canoes. Hopefully you will come away as pleased as I am. Even if you do not purchase, just to listen to the history of Merrimack canoes from Randy as he speaks about his family involvement, past, present and future will be a delightful and educating experience.

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