The Best Canoes

Review Year
Best in Class
Overall Rating
Price
Name Overall Rating Ratings The Good The Bad Price
Wenonah Minnesota II
89
Tracking/Ferrying 9
Hull speed 10
Maneuverability 7
Initial and secondar... 7
Overall comfort 8
Value 8

By far the fleetest of the lot.

Ridiculously light.

No frills besides the ability to go fast.

MSRP
N/A
BEST DEAL
Mad River Expedition 176
88
Tracking/Ferrying 9
Hull speed 9
Maneuverability 7
Initial and secondar... 8
Overall comfort 8
Value 7

Street cred: One of our trip members promptly bought it at the take-out.

It weighs just 60 lbs. (with aluminum gunwales), meaning you can make miles with smiles.

Very aesthetically pleasing...make you feel like a true canoeist.

A bit delicate looking, creating a phobia of all things igneous.

Comfortable and breathable cane seats, but one tester found that the black gunwales burned her legs when heated up in the hot desert sun.

Our test model was white, leaving it with a muddy bathtub ring from the silt-carrying Green River at every camp.

MSRP
$2,599.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Nova Craft Prospector 17
88
Tracking/Ferrying 8
Hull speed 7
Maneuverability 8
Initial and secondar... 8
Overall comfort 8
Value 9

Wide and stable.

Hull is self-righting when placed on edge.

Uber cargo capacity.

A bit cumbersome for a quick evening solo paddle.

Seems to handle better loaded with gear.

MSRP
$1,679.00
BEST DEAL
N/A
Old Town Saranac 160 XT
86
Tracking/Ferrying 6
Hull speed 6
Maneuverability 7
Initial and secondar... 9
Overall comfort 9
Value 9

Very comfortable.

Lots of extras, such as cup holders, rod holders and molded-in storage trays.

The price.

Not a true expedition canoe in comparison to others in the test.

Built-in storage compartment got in the way of carrying larger items.

Upgrade in comfort was not matched in cruising ability.

MSRP
$699.99
BEST DEAL