Is the Beginning of a New Era

(This is a follow up to a previous post titled The End of One Era)

With the decision to sell the boat and use the funds to purchase a canoe made – it was time to put words into action.

I spent the better part of a day off breaking “The Boat” out from its five year slumber by excavating it from its burial spot in the garage.  No, not buried as in underground – buried as in under five years worth of “garage stuff”.  The boat (placed upside down on it’s trailer) became an all too convenient storage shelf for long boards and other hard to store objects.

On a side note, one added benefit to having the boat out of the garage was a bunch of newly established “real estate” space in the garage for “stuff”

Before being able to sell it, I needed to obtain a new trailer license sticker.  With the State of Minnesota’s Governmental Shutdown – that became a task I could not complete.  So I turned my focus on to craigslist – watching for a good deal on a used canoe.  (Actually, I had been watching (casually) for a couple of months now.  I wanted to get a vibe on what was selling, and for how much.)

I spotted many different possibilities.  Every time I found a canoe that met my criteria at or under my budgeted amount – it was sold (often sight unseen and within minutes of the ad going public).  After several failed offers, I expanded my search parameters.  I could make a “road trip” if the deal was good enough – and I could also recruit Best Bud Ed into being a set of eyes and ears for me if one were to show up on his side of the state.

Then, I spotted it.  It was actually listed in the wrong “region” on craigslist, but just so happened to be a few miles from my home.  The ad was for a wedding dress, a tiara, and a canoe.  The canoe portion of the ad read…

Canoe original over $1,000 asking $___/OBO only used a few times comes with paddles and foam for top of vehicle.  (Photo below is actual photo from craigslist ad)


Hmmm.  It was a little bit over my budget, but as you can see from the photo, the boat looked like it was in wonderful shape, and included a few “accessories”.  I sent off an inquiry email expecting to hear the typical “it’s already sold” message back, but in this case, I did not hear back from the seller (also not unusual on craigslist).  Several days pass, and several other possible canoes come and go.   Then, unexpectedly (having all but forgotten about this ad) I received an email that says the canoe is still available.  Over the next two days we exchanged some info and I make arrangements to see the canoe.  It looked even better in person than it did in the photos!

We settled on a price that fell right between my budget and their asking price, and made arrangements to pick it up the following day.  My Facebook friends were deluged with a nearly constant stream of posts sharing my excitement.

Osagian Canoe LogoHere are some details…

- The canoe is a 1983 17’ Osagian Classic.
- It is 17’ long – 36” wide – 13” deep.
- It is made with .050 Thick 6111-T6 (Aircraft grade) Aluminum.
- It weighs 79 lbs and has a 780 lb capacity.

Osagian offers optional built-in “sponsons” (those bulges you see on the side of the canoe).  They add stability and additional capacity.   

I was nervous about “cartopping” the canoe.  I knew it could be done, but with my smallish car, and this largish canoe – I did not know what to expect.  The night before, I received an email from a friend providing me some tips (which, by the way, worked out great).  When I brought the canoe home the following day, it rode “cartop” like a dream!  I set the cruise control at 60mph and neither the car or the canoe protested whatsoever.

Cartopping the canoe Cartopping the canoe


Pristine Hull!



It was unusually warm that morning.  Since I had a few hours before having to go to work, and the girls wanted to play on the “slip –n– slide” I decided to grab a bucket of soapy water and “detail” the canoe while the girls played (and helped). 

By the time I was done, I could hardly believe my eyes.  The hull was in pristine shape!



Osagian 17' aluminum canoe  Osagian 17' aluminum canoeOsagian 17' aluminum canoe  Osagian 17' aluminum canoe    

I was all amped up to take it out the next day, but quickly realized that I neglected to remember the pre-existing commitments that we have in our schedule.   The canoe’s maiden voyage would have to wait at least one more day.

That night a thunderstorm hit, with the potential for “quarter sized” hail.  I had the canoe (belly facing up) up on sawhorses in the back yard.  The only thing I could picture that pristine hull looking like a golf ball.  I ran out (at 4:45am, in the middle of a severe thunderstorm) and carried the canoe under the safety of the deck.  

The plan was for set for Sunday afternoon.  The boys were working at Scout Camp, the Mother of Five (unfortunately) had to work, but I had her blessing to take the girls and navigate the canoe on her maiden voyage!


  1. Hi David, I have the exact same canoe. Spent many hours fishing from it. Yours looks to be in much better shape. BTW, I bought mine at All American Recreation in Bloomington in the early 1980's. Have fun with it! -Ted S

  2. Hey Ted! With the "cafe" out of business, I don't get to see much of you anymore!

    I am VERY pleased with the canoe so far. Have only had it out once (post pending) - but am looking forward to getting it out (and wetting a line) in the very near future!

    Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Very cool Dave. I am so pleased you were able to treat yourself. You work so hard and you totally deserve this! I look forward to reading many a post about the canoe.

  4. It looks great! You and the family are going to have wonderful times together with that canoe. Enjoy!

  5. Looks great! Glad you were able to navigate the waters of craigslist and find a good buy. Haha, I kinda made a boating joke there.

  6. David, I took a closer look at the photos and you have a near perfect canoe there. I can't believe the lack of scratches and dents. Mine hasn't looked that good in nearly 25 years. You're whetting my appetite for getting my old clunker back out on the lake!

    BTW, looks like you have a better car top carrier than I had. Mine were just 4 foam blocks than pressed onto the gunwale. Whenever I hauled it on a small car it would slide front to back scuffing up the roof of the car.

    -Ted S (with envy)


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