But, I'll not abuse you today. Plenty of canoes should do what you want. Old Town's Camper Canoe ($950; www.oldtowncanoe.com), for instance, is designed specifically for the sort of leisurely camping trips you describe. It's a beamy 16-foot boat that's very stable and has a 900-pound capacity to hold you, the kids, gear, whatever. Plus, its molded hull stands up to plenty of abuse if you drag it over gravel bars or rocks on a beach. Another good boat for this purpose is Mad River's Explorer. It's a little pricier ($1,300; www.madrivercanoe.com), in part because it has extra hull detailing, such as a more pronounced V-bottom for better tracking. It also holds a bit more1,100 pounds. But like the Camper, it's a boat for laden, leisurely trips on lakes.
As for carrying that puppy, you might be able to get by with a simple foam-block canoe-carrying kit. These consist of four big foam blocks that snap onto the gunwales. Put the canoe top-down on the camper shell, then use tied-downs to hold it in place. You can buy a whole kitblocks and straps, the lotfrom Campmor, among other places, for $30 (www.campmor.com). Beats investing in a rack, or even finding a rack that's compatible with a shell.
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