An entertaining article about sailing canoe pioneer John MacGregor

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A Thousand Miles in the Rob Roy Canoe

‘After taking on supplies at Gravesend, I shoved off into the tide, and lit a cigar, and now I felt we had fairly started,’ wrote philanthropist, barrister and pioneer of the Victorian canoeing craze, John MacGregor in his classic A thousand miles in the Rob Roy canoe.

He seems to have been a highly entertaining if largely bonkers character, from what we learn from this article published in Sea Kayaker Magazine.

I really must get around to reading Macgregor’s book myself!

See this post for construction information and ‘plans’ for Rob Roy-style canoe described by Neison in his book Practical boatbuilding for amateurs.


3 thoughts on “An entertaining article about sailing canoe pioneer John MacGregor”

  1. Hello, Gav,

    Tony Bibbington of the Mersey Canoe Club has been using an original Rob Roy canoe to follow in the footsteps of MacGregor. If you go to and then click on 2009 calendar and Nov 4 you will find photos of his trip round Heligoland. There is also an article from Canoe Focus which I have sent separately.



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