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Thread: Norfolk newbies needing advice

  1. #1

    Default Norfolk newbies needing advice

    Hi all

    Last year, I had my first trip out on the Norfolk broads by canoe and knew fairly soon that this was something I needed to pursue.

    we did about 15km of the norfolk broads between aylsham and coltishal. One of the best bits about this stretch was the fact that the majority of it was only accessible by canoe so lots of unspoiled areas and we saw some great sights(including cows and calf’s bathing in the river as we floated past!)

    I am now looking to purchase my first family canoe. This will be for 2 adults & 2 children and the plan is to have something fairly versatile to last many years to come. I’ve been looking at the nova craft prospector 17 which seems to tick all the boxes so any advice or recommendations on this would be appreciated.(particularly on how easy it is to handle solo)

    Also, my youngest child is 6 months. I have found certified life jackets for babies and toddlers, but I wondered if anyone has any comments or advice on taking children so young out in a canoe???

    Great to see such a community around such a great thing to do. I look forward to exploring the rest of the content on here.

    cheers!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    20,812

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    Hello and Welcome!

    You're obviously already well and truly hooked...

    No reason you can't take a young child out with you, just plan a simple trip and take the obvious precautions. I'd think hard about keeping them warm enough in winter, but its still perfectly possible. If you search for blogs by "Lynne" you'll see that they've been taking their lad Tobey out in the canoe since he was even younger than that, and have had some pretty impressive adventures since. Also have a look at my "Pirate" blogs for inspiration on how adventurous families can be - I just go along on my own and watch in Awe as my friends take their kids into the wilder parts of the UK.

    A 17' does sounds ideal for the family trip, though is a little long big for soloing, particularly when lugging it about off the water. Certainly if you're thinking of the SP3 version, this will be very heavy. Assuming your other child is still fairly young, you might get away with a 16' for a few years - you can always upgrade and as canoes hold their value well, you won't lose much.

    If you give an idea of budget, we might be able to recommend other canoes. Prospectors are good all rounders, and many of us paddle them, but if your tripping is almost all stillwater short trips, there are more efficient designs.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Somerset
    Posts
    3,379

    Default

    Welcome.
    If you can afford an NC prospector 17' in Tuffstuff or one of their other composites, you'd have a nice and relatively light and stable family boat. Beware though, as where you live is very flat and wind prone, so solo you might well find a prospector shape a bit of a handful. It can be done, but as Mal says above, there are more efficient shapes around,
    If you like NC boats, and bearing in mind you have two dealers near you, have a look at the Cronje and Haida, both 17' boats and similar in weight to the prospector, but less freeboard, so less prone to windage.
    Have a chat with Norfolk Marine and see what they have in stock, or what they might have on the way from Canada, as I think you're more likely to get a test paddle from them than you are from the other dealer. Always ask though, I could be wrong.
    If it's the cheaper SP3 version you're considering, try lifting one .

    Can't help with advice on very young children, but I took 3 of my grandkids (6,7 and 8, and not all at the same time)) out in my canoe for the first time last year, and they absolutely loved it. They'll like it even more if you take the means to cook them sausages/burgers etc on the river bank.
    Nin Wanakiwidee Tchiman

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Derbyshire
    Posts
    99

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    What a good idea you've had!
    Norfolk Marine offered me a test paddle. NC canoes in TuffStuff are relatively light and well made.
    At this time of year you could screw them for a good price, the one I bought in September is £200 pounds
    less now than when I haggled.
    Good luck.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Somerset
    Posts
    3,379

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    the one I bought in September is £200 pounds
    less now
    Yes, same as - bunch of baskets !!
    Nin Wanakiwidee Tchiman

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    S. Yorkshire
    Posts
    666

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    I have a cronje in tuffstuff, bought for loaded trips on flat water and easy rivers. It's been great so far - have a look at my blogs from this summer. Having started in a prospector a few years ago, I definitely prefer this boat for open water - much faster, better tracking and a lot better at shedding the wind.
    I realise I'm a fair way from you but if you are passing through South Yorkshire and want a test paddle let me know.

  7. #7

    Default

    Many thanks for the advice. I’ve contacted Norfolk marine and a few others on what they have in, so will see what comes back. Good shout with lynnes blogs. Will give me some nice reading while I wait. Nice blog Gordon! I’ll let you all know what I end up with! Thanks again!

  8. #8

    Default

    Hello and welcome to the forum!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Wirral
    Posts
    696

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    Hi and welcome. If you would like a test paddle of an Apache Tribe, let me know.
    "I'd far rather be happy than right any day"..........Slartibartfast

    http://apachecanoes.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Stone , Staffs
    Posts
    1,814

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    Norfolk based Silverbirch Canoes now offer a 17ft canoe .. pop in and have a chat with Steve or James at the boathouse their shop on the factory premises ..

    https://www.facebook.com/silverbirch...09699155747073

  11. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pipster3 View Post
    Norfolk based Silverbirch Canoes now offer a 17ft canoe .. pop in and have a chat with Steve or James at the boathouse their shop on the factory premises ..

    https://www.facebook.com/silverbirch...09699155747073
    Hmm, I'll be taking note of this as well.

  12. #12

    Default

    So after endless review searches, speaking with other canoeists and reading almost every forum ever posted on SOTP, I finally made my mind up and put my order in on Saturday. I decided to go for the Silverbirch Broadland 16 in duralite. It ticks all the boxes for what I need (for now) and budget wise is a happy medium, sitting between the sp3’s and TuffStuff alternatives out there. Should be picking it up within the next month so cannot wait to get on the water. I best get busy finishing off my storage bench project ready for it!

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