Sassafras vs. Nymph

I want a solo canoe for fishing high mountain lakes in Montana. It needs to be light for carrying on the trail to the lakes, sometimes over 2 miles. Also stability is important as I am a fly fisherman so casting is not a single motion like spin fishing. Considering the Sassafras 12 (26 pounds) or the Nymph 12 (25 pounds). Any thoughts or suggestions would be welcome. I am interested in build difficulty/problems, stability, paddling ease, speed (not as important), and comfort. I am 6'2", 200 pounds and have a fair amount of experience canoeing and kayaking calm rivers as well as some white water.

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RE: Sassafras vs. Nymph

Obviously I'm biased, but - personally - if I had to carry it a couple of miles, I would definitely prefer a  skin-on-frame boat . . . SOF canoes can be very light indeed.

I've made a few, and you can also find some other well tested designs (still available) from the late Platt Monfort:

I can't answer most of your original questions, except to say that neither are going to be particularly stable for a 6'2" guy doing a lot of fly casting. You might consider a recreational kayak, instead, as they are typically much wider at that length, and you'll basically be sitting on the floor in a solo canoe, anyway.

As for building, the Sassafras will go together much quicker, with a lot less noxious sanding, than the Nymph. Strip building is time consuming, fiddly, messy and labor intensive. It sure does make for some pretty boats, though!

Good luck!

Dave Gentry

RE: Sassafras vs. Nymph


Thanks for the suggestion regarding a SOF option and the website. Definitely something to consider given a possible 10 pound, or more, reduction in weight.



RE: Sassafras vs. Nymph

Has a beautiful canoe..

RE: Sassafras vs. Nymph

I have the sassafras 12 and it is very light and easy to carry.   We put in the kayak seating instead of the canoe format but it was a good building, and is very light weight.

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