Trying out different boats is popular with my kayaking friends. I found a vintage Betsie Bay Manitou for sale in the early fall. The Manitou is one of the first 10 of that model made by Al Anderson from Betsie Bay kayaks. New Manitou’s weight less than 35 lbs. My vintage version is about 45 lbs., heavier than new Betsie Bay’s but lighter than my other boats.
The Manitou is a larger volume greenland style kayak. It’s 22 inches wide and 18 feet long and it built with more depth for larger paddlers which I really appreciate with my size 13 feet. The Manitou has become my favorite kayak to paddle. It’s fast and very maneuverable for an 18 ft kayak. A little lean and it responds quickly. The Manitou is almost an equal in speed to my Current Designs Extreme.
My friend Bob likes to roll. He wanted to put the Betsie Bay to the test of his rolling and bracing skills. The Manitou was a little too roomy for him but he gave the boat high marks for it’s rolling and maneuverability. Check out some of the photos I snapped while Bob was playing.
Rolling and Bracing Slideshow
For another view check out the video of Bob playing in the Betsie Bay.