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The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Tue May 28, 2019 9:57 am
by Grus
What is the most stable in white water? Is Alpacka Gnarwhal significantly better in term of forgiveness or Kokopelli Nirvana does just as well? I've seen this thread, but may be someone has update info? viewtopic.php?f=16&t=5607&p=14521&hilit ... ana#p14521.
Thanks.

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Sun Jun 16, 2019 8:00 pm
by MikeC
They aren't even close.

Gnarwhal is in a league of its own.

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Wed Jun 26, 2019 12:17 pm
by mmonahan
Also trying to decide between the nirvana SB and gnarwahl.
Hardboater and rafter here.
No chance to see either where I live.
Why is the gnarwhal so much better Mike?

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:45 am
by Crooked Creek
mmonahan wrote:
Wed Jun 26, 2019 12:17 pm
Why is the gnarwhal so much better Mike?
Because Mike is an Ambassador for Alpacka haha. For a very new paddler, the Gnarwal will be a little more forgiving (especially in the regular fabric, because it's less rigid.) But as a hardshell boater, I think you'll find the self-bailer Nirvana edges better. It's very rigid and responsive. Check out some of Mark Oates' videos. I'd be surprised if Mike has paddled a 2017 or newer Nirvana self-bailer. Where do you live?

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:56 am
by mmonahan
I live in Prince George, BC
I am in Vancouver often but probably not many there either I suspect.
Ok thanks for the info. Looking forward to some 2020 trips with it.

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:41 am
by rkim
mmonahan, I have no experience with the Nirvana but I have a Gnarwhal SB in Vancouver, I'm sure we can arrange something if you wanted to take it for a spin. Awesome boat.

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:15 pm
by MikeC
Crooked Creek wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:45 am
mmonahan wrote:
Wed Jun 26, 2019 12:17 pm
Why is the gnarwhal so much better Mike?
Because Mike is an Ambassador for Alpacka haha. For a very new paddler, the Gnarwal will be a little more forgiving (especially in the regular fabric, because it's less rigid.) But as a hardshell boater, I think you'll find the self-bailer Nirvana edges better. It's very rigid and responsive. Check out some of Mark Oates' videos. I'd be surprised if Mike has paddled a 2017 or newer Nirvana self-bailer. Where do you live?

It's true that I'm an ambassador. I've also paddled both boats, thus I think my opinion has merit.

The OP is asking which boat is more forgiving. A boat with -- as you've said the koko has -- edges is not, by definition, forgiving.

Re: The most forgiving whitewater boat? Nirvana vs Gnarwhal

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2019 3:25 pm
by Crooked Creek
MikeC wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:15 pm
Crooked Creek wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:45 am
mmonahan wrote:
Wed Jun 26, 2019 12:17 pm
Why is the gnarwhal so much better Mike?
Because Mike is an Ambassador for Alpacka haha. For a very new paddler, the Gnarwal will be a little more forgiving (especially in the regular fabric, because it's less rigid.) But as a hardshell boater, I think you'll find the self-bailer Nirvana edges better. It's very rigid and responsive. Check out some of Mark Oates' videos. I'd be surprised if Mike has paddled a 2017 or newer Nirvana self-bailer. Where do you live?

It's true that I'm an ambassador. I've also paddled both boats, thus I think my opinion has merit.

The OP is asking which boat is more forgiving. A boat with -- as you've said the koko has -- edges is not, by definition, forgiving.
Fair enough. Agreed on both fronts, just clarifying that "more forgiving" and "better" are far from equivalent. Was responding (probably with unecessary snark, sorry) to mmonahan's interpretation of your response as the Gnarwal is "so much better." If you've paddle both, you'll know that a fair answer is a lot more nuanced than that. There are pros and cons to differences in hull shape/volume, material, and rigging. That's why Alpacka made the Wolverine, as the Gnarwal is a barge in comparison.