Phoenix Sport Utility Solo
Model + Weight
|Star Lite||27 lbs|
|Black Lite||29 lbs|
Ted Bell's sport utility solo canoe. It as designed with rivers in mind, yet handles lakes comfortably. It excels at everyting from backwater bays to gentle whitewater streams. Carries a load and maneuvers easily.
|Rocker Bow/Stern||2.5" / 2.5"|
From Cliff Jacobson:
NORTHSTAR PHOENIX REVIEW
The Phoenix is a larger version of the no longer manufactured Bell Wildfire/Yellowstone solo canoes. Its extra volume is carried more forward and aft than in the aformentioned smaller boats which seriously ups capacity and whitewater performance. Unlike the smaller Wildfire/YS which tend to knife through big waves, the Phoenix confidently bucks over over them. I weigh 132 pounds and at first thought the Phoenix was too large for me, but with a good load it's just right. I recently paddled the Phoenix 150 miles on the upper MIssouri River; my total load was about 265 pounds (no portages; we carried ice and went heavy) and the boat barely drew three inches of water and it never lost its lively feel. LIke the Wildfire/YS, the Phoenix pivots on a penny without the need for extensive leans. I rate the boat competent in high Class II where big waves and quick turns are the rule. Add a spray cover and I'd trust her in low Class III.
Wind: One look at the comparably high-sided Phoenix and you may think it will be a handful in wind. I found it wasn't. Paddled empty (but well), there is minimal concern. Add a light camping outfit and the boat cruises easily. There is no serious tendency to spin into the wind.
If you want a do-it-all solo cruiser that's at home in the BWCA and well beyond, the Phoenix is a great choice. Oh, did I mention that this canoe is gorgeous? Important: Order the Phoenix with the HIGH seat drops. Sitting low, with your armpits in the gunnels--or kneeling beneath a dangerously low seat (foot entrapment!) discourages control and defies smiles.