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Nova Craft Prospector 16

All-round wilderness expedition canoe

A true icon in the canoeing world, the Prospector 16 is widely regarded as the best all-round canoe for both lake and running water use. Great for everything from day trip adventures to full expedition use. Available in several lightweight composite constructions including TuffStuff.

Fibreglass Construction: £2099.00

Tuffstuff Construction: £2,879.00 (RRP £3,199.00 - Saving £320.00)

TuffStuff Expedition Construction: £3499.00

Nova Craft Prospector 16 SP3 Green

Nova Craft Prospector 16 Tuffstuff in Green

Nova Craft Prospector 16 Tuffstuff - Top View
Nova Craft Prospector 16 Tuffstuff loaded up for an expedition canoe trip
  • More info
  • Features
  • Dimensions
  • Construction
  • Colours
  • Delivery

Nova Craft Prospector 16

The Nova Craft Prospector 16 is based on the original Chestnut Prospector, a true workhorse of the Canadian North. Constructed from lightweight and durable TuffStuff composite, this canoe will stand up to the abuse of many years of paddling yet with a total unladen weight of 25.4kg it is lightweight to handle and easy to solo carry on long portages. For more demanding use, choose the Tuffstuff Expedition construction weighing just a touch more at 27.2kg.

This canoe feels most at home loaded with gear paddling a remote wilderness lake or river. Whilst it's a great recreational boat it's versatile enough to be a good all round canoe. The shallow hull gives a great stability to the boat and with experience your confidence levels will increase. With a carrying weight of 455kg, and plenty of room, there is capacity for two people and enough camping kit for multi-day expeditions but is also great for general tandem day trips. It has to be one of the best all round touring canoes on the market. High sides give you a dry ride through waves and rapids alike by cutting through and deflecting the water. With a symmetrical design front to back this boat is easy to paddle solo or with company, with loads more space for kit!

If you think this is too big try its little brother The Nova Craft Prospector 15. If you're looking for a boat to take you and the family for an expedition trip then take a look at the Nova Craft Prospector 17.

Also available in a cheaper SP3 triple layer rotomoulded polyethylene SP3 model.


  • Aircraft grade Black anodized aluminium gunwales and aluminium reinforced ABS end deck plates.
  • Ash framed seats with nylon lacing.
  • Ash carry handles at bow and stern.
  • Deluxe sculpted ash centre yoke (In our opinion the best standard fit canoe Yoke on the market), shaped to spread the weight across your shoulders evenly and even got a small notch for the small bone in your neck.
  • Shallow arch shaped hull gives initial stability whilst a moderate rocker allows good manoeuvrability.

Custom Options

All Nova Craft Canoes can be ordered with the following factory fitted options:

  • Wooden white ash gunnels with an oiled finish.
  • Kneeling thwart.
  • Colour matched skid plates.
  • Special Order colours available upon request.
  • Nova Crafts custom composite constructions such as Blue Steel, Aramid Lite or Fibreglass.
  • Choice of Webbed, Bootlace or robust ABS Plastic seats.

Please contact us to discuss any of these options in further detail, including prices and estimated lead times.


  • Length - 16ft / 488cm
  • Width - 36in / 91.4cm
  • Bow Depth - 23in / 58.4cm
  • Centre Depth - 15in / 38.1cm
  • Stern Depth - 23in / 58.4cm
  • Rocker - 2.5in / 6.4cm
  • Tuffstuff Weight - 56lbs / 24.5kg
  • Tuffstuff Expedition Weight - 60lb / 27.2kg
  • Capacity - 1000lbs / 455kg

Other Construction Types

Available to special order - please Contact Us for pricing and supply times

  • Aramid Lite: 45lb / 20.4kg
  • Blue Steel: 48lb / 21.8kg



An affordable composite material with a proven track record of durability. Nova Crafts fiberglass hulls are among the lightest and most rugged on the market today, using woven fiberglass cloth to make a truly superior hull. Canoes constructed from fibreglass are great for recreational use and are a good choice for those wanting a lightweight canoe but are on a budget.


A cutting edge proprietary composite made of basalt and Innegra fibers. Basalt fibre is made of melted basalt rock and Innegra is a fibre consisting mostly of polypropylene. When they are woven together into a cloth and infused with our high impact vinylester resin system, the result is simply amazing! TuffStuff canoes are a great choice for paddlers looking for a light canoe for extended flatwater tripping with more than enough strength to handle regular paddling abuse.

TuffStuff Expedition (TSE)

A more robust, heavier duty version of our standard TuffStuff construction. These canoes are an excellent choice for an expedition grade canoe for extended wilderness trips and some whitewater use. Stiff for great performance, incredible impact resistance and lightweight all in one canoe.

Aramid Lite

The lightest canoes that Nova Craft make and are intended only for flatwater paddling. Built by infusing Twaron fabric Aramid cloth with high impact resistant vinylester resin to create a canoe that has great strength to weight characteristics. Aramid canoes are a top choice for those only paddling flatwaters who want the very lightest canoe for easy portaging and car topping.

Blue Steel

A hybrid material of aramid and carbon fibre with a clear gel coat finish to reveal the truly stunning blue/black composite cloth beneath. Blue Steel canoes are light like Aramid Lite boats but are significantly stronger. Not only is the look of carbon fiber cloth very appealing but the carbon fibers add stiffness to the hull to increase paddling efficiency. Adding an inner layer of Innegra and infusing these hulls with high impact resistant vinylester resin makes a very rugged canoe. Blue Steel canoes are most at home in flatwater scenarios but have been proven very reliable on long river expeditions as well.

All Constructions Have A Gelcoat Finish

All Nova Craft composite canoes feature a gelcoat finish. Gelcoat is a resin that provides a smooth hard finish to a canoe. It protects the underlying composite cloth and acts as an abrasion layer. This can either be coloured (e.g, Green, Oxblood, Sand, Olive) to 'paint' the canoe a specific colour, or in some cases clear gelcoat is used to reveal the composite cloth beneath. Gel coats are suspectible to scratching, chipping and cracking if they impact a hard surface (rocks, slipways, pebbles etc). Luckily, gel coat is easily repairable, and coloured-matched or clear gel coat repair kits are available to remedy any scratches, chips or gelcoat cracks you may pick up during the use of your composite canoe. Sometimes gelcoat damage can look drastic if you have taken a particularly hard impact, but often any damage is limited to the gel coat rather than the much tougher composite hull of the canoe itself. Take a look at the Nova Craft Guide to Gelcoat Repairs for more info.

Nova Craft Canoes - Contruction Type Comparison


Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Red


Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Ox Blood

Ox Blood

Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Green


Nova Craft Prospector 16 in Sand


Nova Craft Special Edition Clear Colour

Special Edition - Clear

* Shown with Optional Skid Plates Fitted

Delivery Of Composite Canoes

We offer a delivery service for Composite Canoes (Fibreglass, Tuffstuff, Aramid, Carbon) covering many areas of mainland UK using our own vans. Due to the increased risk of damage during transit, we are unable to offer a courier delivery service for this product range.

If you require delivery, please contact us with your address and we can advise whether a delivery service is available in your area.

Click & Collect - Stores Nationwide

We offer a collect from store service for the Nova Craft Prospector 16. Collection for orders placed online can be made from any of our Canoe Shops UK Stores. For full details on our Click & Collect service, please see: Nationwide Click & Collect

Give us a call on 01726 862798 if you have any questions about the Nova Craft Prospector 16