MarkP of Kruger Canoes, also known as Manitou Cruiser of the WaterTribe, has graciously offered me us his Kruger Cruiser for the River Sections of the Ultimate Florida Challenge (UFC). I can’t imagine a better boat for us.)
My first encounter with Kruger Canoes was in 2005 when Mark invited me up to Michigan for a week long expedition in his DreamCatcher which he lent me for the 2006 UFC. I wrote an article after that trip titled “I’ve been Krugerized“. The boat then became my DreamCatcher after having won the bet of finishing that Challenge.
A Kruger Canoe is up for any kind of challenge. Much bigger (it’ll hold my folding bike for the 40 mile portage) and heavier than your typical sea kayak, they are made to be strong and tough, the ultimate tripping canoe. The Cruiser is also surprisingly fast doing extremely well each year in the Everglades Challenges when paddled by NightSong and NightNavigator (who have finished 7 challenges). It’s also known for setting a world record racing the length of the Mississipi River. Of course everyone knows speed if really about the paddler not the boat, yet I think Alan (SOS) and I will do well in this Cruiser, offering us the comfort, stability, and the toughness needed for this section of the challenge.
Even better, this canoe had done these Rivers before. Mark paddled this boat in the 2002 Cross Florida Challenge (CFC), so it already knows the way I can’t imagine success in any other boat on the Rivers.
Picture above of Marty (SaltyFrog) with his wooden kayak and Emily (who partnered with Mark) with the Kruger Cruiser during 2002 CFC.