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Reviews for Georgian Bay Kayak by ClearWater Design


Rated: 8.58/10 Based On: 12 Reviews

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07-17-2012
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     The Georgian Bay is a very enjoyable boat to paddle. Its hard chines allow course changes simply by leaning, the clean hull design slices through water very easily and the bow handles the waves quite well (have not yet had water come into the cockpit). My 1.8m, 85kg frame fits nicely in the cockpit and the rudder controls and thigh braces are conveniently placed.

Placing my camera (3kg) on the top deck or my dog (6 kg) on the cockpit edge alters stability very little. Hatches are very nicely designed. Boat itself is quite stable (though bouncy) in 0.5m waves. Wind tends to draw the boat toward itself but the rudder compensates very nicely. Have paddled calm streams and rivers as well as Lake Ontario (waves up to 0.5m) and have had no problem. When I broke the rudder mount on rocks (getting in too close to shore during a heavy swell) ClearWater Design replaced it at no cost!

I am very pleased with this boat and the with its manufacturer and would recommend both to anyone.

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03-14-2008
Submitted by: KA
Rating: 8 of 10

     This is my second ClearWater Design, (also have NuNu).
Pros: Comfortable seat, roomy cockpit, spacious hatches for plenty of gear. Does well on the rivers but better in the bay where it shines, the "dolphin nose" stays above the waves rather than cutting through or going under, less water in the cockpit! The rudder works very well & solves weathercocking problems.

Cons: A little cumbersome (compared to the Tsunami 140) Hatches do leak terribly but hopefully can be fixed as mentioned by another reviewer. Does need thigh braces but they can be added.

Conclusion: If you are looking to have fun camping and kayaking in an economic boat the Georgian Bay is for you. If you are looking to clock speed in something sleek and nimble - it is not. A great deal for the price.

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11-01-2006
Submitted by: CherylSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     I bought this boat used last winter and I just love it. I', abput 5'2" and I moved from a 16' boat. I find this one to be not as fast, but still zippy enough for me, it tracks true and is easy to paddle. I actually prefer it over my larger boat.
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03-17-2006
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 6 of 10

     This boat is comfortable and nice looking. It is not as stable as I had hoped, relative to Wilderness Systems, of which I'm familiar with 3 different boats. But, for the price and quality, I'm happy to put up with feeling more "tippy".
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03-09-2006
Submitted by: Bob S.
Rating: 10 of 10

     Great day tour boat or light overnighter. Easy to maneuver. Tracks straight and is stable. The rudder helps in a wind. Easy to car top alone.
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03-09-2006
Submitted by: View Profile Send Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     A smooth tracking, exceptionally stable little craft! I switched to this from a 17' sea kayak and have absolutely no regrets. And, most importantly, I can paddle for hours with no discomfort -- the inflatable, adjustable seat is a remarkable addition!
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09-01-2005
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     I got my Georgian Bay from Joe Signs Equipment on eBay for 680 including shipping. This was including a rudder. The boat has way more storage than I expected. I pack light, and I could fit 3 or 4 weeks of food in it w/ gear. Iím 6'2" and 180 lbs, and i found the entry to be easy. My size 12 feet had to be angled like a previous review, but i do that anyway, so its no problem. The boat is about average as far as rolling goes. It has no knee braces, but it is designed with semi knee coverage in the hull. The inflatable seat back is nice. The pad on the bottom could use some help though. The boat is very fast and responsive, tracks above average, and responds well to leaning turns. The rudder ill-advised if you can turn the boat w/out it. It gives lots of drag and slowed me down a lot on a calm lake. It was also difficult to let up and down. I am thinking of taking it off. The hatches are moody. After a few minutes of rolling, the front was filled with water, and the back was 1/2 full. I emptied the boat, readjusted the covers, and tried again and they were bone dry. You have to get them just so in order to have them work right. The bulkheads are sealed good. Overall, the boat is well worth the money. No boat is perfect, and this one does exactly what i want. It also took boat wakes like nothing.
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09-01-2005
Submitted by: Michael
Rating: 7 of 10

     Iíve paddled a Georgian Bay for four years now, and find it a great boat for the price. It has decent speed, tracks well, turns easily, and surfs pretty well on smaller waves. The problem I have with the boat is the outfitting. I found the backrest hard on my back so I ripped it out and installed an IR backband. I also added hip pads and had to pad the knee area because of the lack of knee braces. Itís now a comfort machine! Iíve also had problems with the hatches leaking water after rolling, which was easily fixed by lining the covers with a strip of cell foam for a better seal.
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07-20-2005
Submitted by: Send Email
Rating: 10 of 10

     My wife and I just purchased two Georgian Bay kayaks after much searching and researching what is the best kayak for the $. Neither of us has had any paddling experience, but we knew we wanted a boat between 10 and 14 feet (the longer the better) with plenty of storage (aka stern AND bow). Our limiting factor was cost. After talking to several kayak dealers in the area, we were convinced we would have to settle for a recreational kayak rather than a touring which we really wanted. I then checked out E-bay and found a dealer in NY that would ship to TN and was offering great deals on the 14' Georgian. For $1460 (less than the price of one of any other company's 14 footer) we got two Georgian Bays with rudders, two spray skirts, and shipping on both boats. I took mine out yesterday for the first time, and I must say, I was amazed. We had tested two Necky Zoars (also reviewed) and enjoyed them, but I really like the Georgian Bay better. Even though the Georgian is 2 feet shorter than the Necky, it tracked much better without the rudder than the Necky. I had little use for the rudder, but I know my wife likes using it and it is nice to have. The seat is also very comfortable, and the boat comes equipped with plenty of deck rigging. There is more than enough storage for a weekend camping trip (we could probably do a week if we packed both yaks). I have noticed that several people complained about the cockpit size. I am 6'1" and 170 lbs. with size 11.5 feet. I could see how larger individuals might have a tough time getting into the cockpit as I did bump my shins a time or two, but I had plenty of foot room (this may be because I paddle bare-foot). I will agree that the carrying handles are uncomfortable, but the easiest way to carry a kayak is to place the hand under the hull, so I did not feel that that was an issue. Overall: If you are looking for a touring kayak but have limited resources ($$$), the ClearWater Design Georgian Bay is a PERFECT boat (I still can't believe how little I paid for them at Joe Signs' Equipment on E-Bay). I can't stop singing this boat's praises. I will be sure to post again once my wife and I put some more hours on the boats.
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09-20-2004
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 9 of 10

     Just picked up two GB's for the price of one from a fabulous outfitter in the Kawarthas. Service second to none!

Now we must admidt this is our first - never rented, borrowed or snuck a paddle from a kayak before - so no comparisons on a professional basis here. However, for those who just might be in the "same boat" my better half and I will vouch for it's comfyness - very adjustable seat and foot rests - a bit cramped in the foot room for Hubby size 12.5 feet, but I find it okay with water shoes - anything bigger I also have difficulty as I have a bum ankle with no forward pointing range of motion. So far this is the only neg we can find.

Lots of room to store things in the hatches, below -in the cockpit and on top - for the day trips and weekends. With no lessons (yet!) She seems to handle really well - a bit tippy for the beginner, at first, and very close to the water line leaving no room for error - tee hee - but once you get that "centre of gravity" or "in the zone" it is really nice and instills confidence.

Have not a clue if we are paddling correctly but we can both get a pretty good wake going at full tilt and she flys like a feather across the water. Does seem to pull/track to the left a bit - but that could be our dominant right hand stroke. (Canoe paddlers for years).

For our first "Yak" as some say and for the price we got the deal of the year (in fact the last two they had!). For the money saved we may consider installing the rudder system in the future. (all depends on the trips we intend on taking.)

Wanting to get in some fall paddling (cautious paddling) to see the colours - so next Spring will be the big test and get into some chop, ride the boat wakes and maybe take on a few low grade rivers - after of course some serious lessons on safety and technique!!!! Happy Yakking all!!

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06-09-2004
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 8 of 10

     A great deal found at $500 the boat has given me everything I expected. Good tracking, lightweight, comfortable seat and dry storage. Only drawback is the lack of space for my ankles: the foot pegs make me angle my toes out and keep my heels together, but its a small price to pay for such a nice and Inexpensive boat.
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12-09-2003
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 9 of 10

     This is my first kayak so I do not have comparisons other than rentals but I am impressed with this boat. I could not find any reviews on it so I was skeptical but it had all the elements I was seeking for the right price. Specifically, I wanted something I could handle carrying on my own as well as a cockpit I could move in. For $700 - I got a rudder, a roomy cockpit, 2 hatches and a boat under 50 lbs. The only minor drawback I discovered so far is that the handles are extremely uncomfortable for carrying the boat. Otherwise, I am pretty happy with it.
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