How to Carry a Canoe


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heat and provide a cooling effect, check ’em out at Exofficio.com Lifting and carrying anything 16 feet long
is always going to pose some problems. With that said, canoes are surprisingly easy
to move around. We’re going to take a look at ways for both
one person and two people to lift and carry a canoe, starting with the one person lift. When lifting a solo canoe, if you’re right
handed you’ll start on the left side of the canoe, and if you’re left handed you’ll start
on the right side. Start at the center part of the canoe and
grab the closest gunnel with your hands about shoulder width apart. Now, bend your knees and lift the canoe onto
your thighs. Your legs should now be bearing the weight
of the canoe. With a gentle rocking motion, use the leg
closest to the stern of the canoe to lift the far gunnel so that you can grab it with
the hand closest to the bow. You should now be holding the near gunnel
with your stern side hand. The far gunnel will be the hand closest to
the bow. To get the canoe over your head and the yoke
on your shoulders, you’ll start with a light rocking motion and then lightly kick the canoe
up with your knee as you lift and flip the canoe. Make sure that as you’re doing this, duck
under the gunnel and rotate your stance so that you finish facing the bow. You can then gently drop the yoke onto your
shoulders. If you’re doing this properly, you won’t feel
any strain on your back as it’s your legs that will be doing all of the work. To put the canoe back down, you’ll simply
reverse the lift. With a good grip on the gunnels, bend your
knees bounce the canoe off of your shoulders and rotate your stance to face the canoe as
you flip it back down onto your thighs. A little trick that can make both lifting
and dropping the canoe easier in the beginning is to keep the stern end of the canoe on the
ground. This helps keep the canoe balanced as you
flip it. A two-person lift is very similar to the one
person lift except that one paddler will position themselves at the bow thwart and the other
will be at the stern thwart, or seat. From this position, you’ll use the exact same
lifting technique that we just looked at, only you’ll do it in unison. Once the canoe is above your heads, the person
up front will walk their hands forward and rest their bow on their shoulder. The person in the back will drop the stern thwart or seat onto their shoulders as if it were a yoke. Something to keep in mind when setting up
a two person lift is that the bow person gets the lighter end and it’s going to be a lot
easier for them to see where they’re going. If lifting and carrying a canoe is going to
be a real problem, another great option is a canoe cart, although they don’t work well
on really rough terrain. With that said, there are a few important tricks that will make lifting and carrying a canoe a lot easier.

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