This is the canoe that got me into paddlesports. I knew nothing at all when I bought this on E-bay. Didn't even know that I needed a solo canoe for what I wanted to do. Luckily, the next thing I bought was a pfd, and I set out to learn.
This canoe is everything the reviews say it is and more. I have rolled it over alone and with a buddy (who now has his own boats), but I did learn. Mine is a 1991 which was stored inside before I bought it and I took good care of it afterward, as a result it still looks like new. It is good for almost everything you would want a canoe for and is indestructible. It is reasonably priced and carries a tremendous load, but I personally think that it has beautiful lines of the older canoe's. That is why I would never sell it even though I have bought 5 more boats of different makes for different purposes. You cannot go wrong with this canoe.I got a Discovery 158 5 years ago used from an outfitter for $275 and it is a great family canoe for local lakes and rivers. I bought portage pads from Piragis that bolt on to the thwart and I don't have too much trouble portaging shorter distances (half mile or less) but this certainly isn't the canoe to take to the Boundary Waters.
It's very stable for the kids and it is a tank. If I'm worried about a tricky landing and the kids dumping us out, I can ram the bow right up on shore and I have no concerns about how the boat will handle it. You won't win any races in this boat but it is a good all around family trooper. Using the bent shaft paddles on the lakes seems to help quite a bit and I paddle it solo by turning it around backwards and kneeling while resting against the tractor seats. I'm not running races or doing anything worse than class II all over Ohio - for that, I couldn't ask for a better boat and value.It's a tank. Heavy, flat bottomed, and virtually indestructable but definately not a graceful boat. It's slow on flat water and doesn't lean well (because of flat bottom) in WW. Some folks report "oil canning" problems in the middle of the hull. It's a fine beginner boat but, if you find out you really like the sport, you'll probably regret not buy a better boat.
I doubt I'll ever sell mine as it is my first canoe and will be a good "loaner" but, I wouldn't buy another. Save your money for another month or so and buy a better canoe...there really is a difference. They say, "buying the good stuff only hurts once." It's true.