I used the Helios 380 for five continuous months in Micronesia this winter. Conditions ranged from glassy calm to the feeling of the breath of Typhoon Dale in November. The boat handles well under almost all conditions. I was able to hold enough gear and supplies for two weeks by myself or one week with a partner. I would also like to comment on the ruggedness of the boat. During the five month expedition, I never had to patch the boat, coming home with only superficial scratches on the bottom. The Helios 380 is a serious boat that can take you places no hardshell can be taken, for a fraction of the cost of a folding boat.
My fiancee and I took your boat to all the Society Islands of French Polynesia and Kandavu and Vanua Levu in Fiji. In Fiji we loaded up all our gear plus presents for the local chiefs, and headed way off the tourist map. We stayed in villages that white people hadn't been to, and the locals were fascinated with the boat. After three months of hard use, still no patches, and this is after 5 months continuous use the year before! When we moved on to the trekking portion of our trip, we just washed the boat off and put it in a box and mailed it home. At the end of our journey, we swung through southern Thailand and rented sit on tops. We would really have rather had the Helios with us.
David Nitsch, Los Angeles, CA
Labels: - Testimonials, Expeditions, Helios, Micronesia, Tough Boat