First sorry for the long winded question, but I want to make sure we pick the right raft.
New member and new to packrafting. My wife and are are experienced kayakers and currently have a couple of hardshell kayaks, canoes and an Advanced Elements double kayak that we love for van camping. However we have been doing a lot of backpacking to alpine lakes and are now thinking of getting a packraft to paddle around these lakes when we hike/backpack in and/or use the rafts to take us and our gear across the lakes to other more remote camping areas. This is where I need your help as I find the info on the Alpacka website to be a bit sparse or contradictory.
We’re looking at a single raft that can carry both of us (I’m 5’11" 175lbs and she’s 5’3" 112lbs) and our medium dog along with our backpacking gear. The water we will be travelling on will mostly be flat water alpine lakes. Perhaps very very infrequently a mild river float. As we’ll be packing this raft along with all of our backpacking gear so weight is an issue. It looks like the Gnu and the Explorer 42 are the best choices for size however I’ll be darned if I can figure out the real weights of the rafts and how much they can carry. So onto the questions:
- What is the real weight of these rafts in my backpack? So everything we need to get them going (excluding paddles). So raft, two seats, patch kit, inflation bag, etc.
- Any idea on the max carry weight of these two rafts?
- We really want to keep it to one raft for the two (and dog) of us as opposed to two single rafts…is there another raft or solution that we should look at?
- If we went for the Gnu is the Vectran fabric worth it? I read somewhere that it’s lighter than the standard fabric, but again I can’t find out exactly how much.
- Any other thoughts/surprises/gotchas that you can think of?
Thanks for putting up with the essay here and any and all info is much appreciated.