|Nick Schade's Solo microBootlegger - the ultimate leisure kayak|
Unfortunately, there was not a single microBootlegger in attendance at the most recent OkoumeFest and CLC did not have any microBootlegger demo-boats either. Bummer!
Note to CLC: consider adding a microBootlegger to your demo fleet.
|Paddling Dan Thaler's Great Auk 14|
Dan let me test paddle his boat and without question, the Auk performed exceedingly well in terms of tracking, maneuverability and stability. It was just fun to paddle. So, clearly, this was a boat I should be considering.
Even so, I was still leaning toward the microBootlegger (simply smitten with the design!) even though I had not seen or tested an actual specimen. I did however have a chance to chat with Nick Schade during the OkoumeFest about this design.
Shearwater Sport on my short list. I was hesitant at first simply because I was really hoping to build an all-strip boat. However, after reading the details about this exceedingly versatile kayak design, I came to the conclusion that this boat might indeed be the most suitable match for Iris.
|This is my new SWS getting wet for the first time|
After a couple of weeks of further 'yak-trospection, I went ahead and ordered the Shearwater Sport Hybrid kit which had been sitting in my garage, patiently awaiting the arrival of fall.
In the meantime, back to the drawing board - doodling with possible deck designs!
Iris is fond of Navajo designs and I was hoping to somehow invoke that First Nations spirit. The stylized "thunderbird" motif used by CLC on the front deck of one of their demo Shearwaters seemed perfect for that purpose and hard to improve on. So I decided to start with that and then develop my own counterpoint for the back deck.
|Here the SWS is finished - ready to go to sea|