Announcing the winners of the
Duckworks Design Contest #5
here to review the rules
click here to see all the entries
by Steven Lewis
by Philippe Peltier
by Skip Johnson
Your 90 day limit makes a strong motor necessary. I'd rather do it in 120 and not have one. Sailing is possible only maybe 1/3 of the time. Riverside trees usually ruin the wind. I prefer light weight. Every pound is an impediment to forward travel, especially if you don't rely on a motor, in which case rowing is paramount. The heavy boats would have to anchor in the river at night. What if a drift log catches you? I envy any man whose partner is willing to do something like this.
Looking it over and quite sure there is no use for sails at least from Kansas City down, better to leave them off and take a spare motor. It will be a motorboat experience although there are still people doing the trip in open canoes, but not with their wives. So the second item of note is that lots of space needed or a divorce lawyer needs to figure into the $5000. Also good shelter needed to keep running on wet days and also to allow camping gear, etc. to stay in position all the time with no need to pack up everytime one wants to move.
Jonbird is my 1st choice because it is large, beamy and has quite a few accoutrements that will make life a little easier. There is plenty of shade built in and can be buttoned up in a hurry in the event of bad weather. It is a little heaver and has more draft than the other boats, but I would be willing to sacrifice a little draft for comfort. The shoal water will be traversed during the end of the spring flood, so the draft might not be a problem. The intentional placement of skids that facilitate loading on a readily available car transport is a novel idea. The cannibalization of a camper for parts for use in a boat is definitely out-side of the box.