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On the water, the Shacho is fast - one stroke acceleration at it's finest. Initial stability is good, one feels right at home. The hip pads that come with John's standard outfit connect you to the boat, almost as if they had glued you in.... Eddy turns, wave turns, surfing, all within the first 1/2 hour on a class 3 river- never felt that confident from the start in a new boat. The narrow cockpit together with the pronounced tumblehome make off side strokes a breeze. Tiny eddies catches the boat almost on its own, surf waves also- big ones and smaller ones. For the tiny waves, one has to use his strokes, though. After all, we do this to exercise?!
The Shacho is asymmetric and mine is trimmed a bit bow light. Meaning, I need to lean into the strokes to peel out fast. But again, acceleration is great. The soft chines don't engage as much as the more modern ww solo boats but this is what I like! I feel more in control this way. Final stability is very good as well- can lean the canoe to the gunnels and right it up again without feeling the need for a roll.
Bottom line: if you are a white water open boat addict and like a fun boat that is not breaking your back (or your Bank), have a look at Millbrook's!
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