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Old 13 July 2014, 18:58   #1
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RIB Size for Camping, Adventure

Hi guys, I am looking into getting a small RIB for camping as well as some small adventuring trips. Probably the largest trip im interested in would be a trip to the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior.

I am wondering what is the smallest RIB that would be safe to take? I have been looking at an 11' (3.4m) 2001 Avon RIB, and would probably match it with a 25hp older evinrude outboard.

I also have been looking into an older 1989 Zodiac 12' RIB, also with a 25hp.

I will be going to the islands for around a week with two people and gear + safety equip. And of course carefully watching the weather (not that that always helps on superior).

I was just looking for anyones input, as this will be my first RIB I own personally.
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Old 13 July 2014, 19:23   #2
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Hi - just wondering where your launching from? Ashland ?
I know its a lake but I also know that weather comes in very quickly there.
2 people - plus you - thats 3 adults, camping and safety gear,
and in my opinion you need to be looking at a minimum size of around 15 feet.
Try to get the biggest boat you can...I think you will find an 11 foot Avon a little full with
everything you want to take - dont forget you will need fuel for the boat as well.
there are tons of posts and threads on here about safety equipment, but my advice is to have the local USCG check out your boat and safety kit before heading out.
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Old 13 July 2014, 19:27   #3
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I haven't fully planned the trip yet, so I haven't yet looked into launching etc to closely, Ideally I'd like to find somewhere to launch out of Bayfield.

It will be only two people in the boat (including me), sorry for the wording in the first post, it did seem like 3.
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Old 13 July 2014, 20:51   #4
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Also, My main reason for looking for a small one is that the majority of my adventures will be on smaller inland lakes. I would also like the ability to use it with a trolling motor/ oars (if need be) for some lakes.

I'm mostly trying to figure out if, with 2 people and gear, going to the Apostle island is even sane. I do have a decent amount of experience in boating, usually just with larger boats, and inland lakes. (although I have had a few rough water experiences on lake michigan in ~20' RIBs)
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Old 14 July 2014, 02:28   #5
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Welcome to RIB.net

I would recommend a nice 18 footer at least.

This thread from another board, but I believe he is a poster on this board too, should answer a lot of your questions regarding the trip, and what kind of boat is necessary.

Lake Superior (Apostles Islands) beat me to a pulp...I threw in the towel. - iboats Boating Forums

A quick search on this board, found this write up.
Devils Island.......
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Old 14 July 2014, 04:19   #6
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Well....being your in the U.S....and I'm of the Generation that saw 'Deliverence'
..something Big enough to take all your weaponry and self defence systems!
In fairness you will Taylor your gear to fit your Rig...probably the biggest and best equipped you can afford,..other usage has to taken into consideration for sure!..and not just Camping trips.You will definitely also find the bigger RIB you have..... the more gear you'll take!!
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Old 14 July 2014, 13:08   #7
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Well, after reading as much as I can find, I think I am going to go for the Avon 340 in the area and get the mid 80's 25hp Evinrude on it.
My plan is to do the trip to the apostle islands, weather dependent. I will stay closer to the inner islands, and not stray to far from them, so in a pinch I can make it to one of their beaches if the weather turns foul.

The advantage of the 340 is that if need be I can find a beach and pull it up on shore, and weather out the storm.
I'm used to packing light, as I do a lot of motorcycle camping, and the RIB can sure haul more than my bike even with all of the safety gear.
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Old 14 July 2014, 19:33   #8
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Hey guys,

Thanks for all the replies so far, I feel OK going to the Apostles with me and one other in an 11 footer. (I figure if the kayaks can then I should be OK, with appropriate precautions)

It sounds like the boat is smaller than would be ideal, but it should be OK, so long as we are careful and don't go to the outer islands.

Another question, does anyone know off hand if an Avon 340 RIB would need a long or short shaft motor? Everything I have seen so far points to long shaft..

Thanks! and feel free to continue with any advice/criticism, I will take it all into account.
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Old 14 July 2014, 19:47   #9
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Leanier;

Out of curiosity, why go for the 340? A slightly larger boat will make a big difference in marginal weather. The added length and weight will handle swell and chop better than a shorter and lighter boat (in general.)

I understand the whole "I think that's enough boat for me" thing; that was part of the reason for my upgrade 8 years ago. The learning curve won't be any different, and assuming you can store it, not much else changes (aside from some minor regulatory mandated equipment at 16 feet, I think.)

jky
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Old 14 July 2014, 19:50   #10
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A large part is cost, and another is availability in my area. Storage is a bit of a problem, but not a huge issue.

I'm hoping to keep with a smaller more fuel efficient boat also.

Mostly, it is that I found a 2001 Avon 340 in decent shape by me for $600, and I have not seen any larger RIB's for sale in the area for awhile.

I would be open to a 12-14, if I could find one and it was not very expensive..
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