My SOAR 14 performed quite well on our 16-day Grand Canyon trip. We had 26,000 cfs for most of the trip, so the rapids were really big. I only swam three times; once when the canoe went completely over and twice when I got ejected (guess I need the thigh braces). In each case I was able to self-rescue in the rapid. The SOAR proved itself again as a wonderful multi-day expedition boat. I carried all my gear and 5 gallons of water for the group. I used a 280-cm. kayak paddle ; it worked really well for bracing into the big waves. I even slept on the canoe on several occasions. I set up several webbing straps across the grommets and put my ThermaRest on top of the straps. It was pretty comfortable as long as I did not roll off. A Paco pad would have worked even better.
Next time I do the Grand, I will take the SOAR again. It fits in better than a kayak with the rafting culture, it was fun and challenging to paddle, and I was great to be able to read the river guide while paddling. In the flat stretches, I would often sit on my soft gear bag and put my legs under the seat facing the stern. This was more comfortable than sitting on the canoe seat with legs bent at a sharp angle. One day I even lashed my ThermaRest on top of my gear turning the SOAR into a decked canoe.
If I ever get a permit, it would sure be fun to do a SOAR only trip. Would you be interested?
I hope all is going well for you.
Folding Kayak Adventures