|NATIONAL PARKS QUICKLINKS|
Backpacker Magazine – May 2008
Some of the country's best wilderness is accessible only by boat. To help you get there, our testers picked the top canoes in six key categories.
OLD TOWN KORU
Meet the canoe equivalent of a 1966 Shelby GT: fast and sexy. The Koru is a head-turner with traditional, pleasing lines, a hull made with a lightweight Kevlar/carbon composite, and a performance that's totally modern. "This boat slices through the miles," said one tester. On Yellowstone Lake, the sleek boat cut easily through the water, held a straight line, shed choppy waves, and seemed immune to crosswinds. A shallow vee-shaped hull provides solid tracking, and an ergonomic hull shape makes for easier reach and more efficient strokes. Flotation chambers add buoyancy, and the sliding bow seat allows easy weight adjustment (though it shifted a bit when we paddled hard). Caution: A flat keel line reduces agility in swift currents. Capacity is 1,000 pounds. $2,999; 17' 5"; 50 lbs. (800) 343-1555; oldtowncanoe.com.