Northstar Canoes

You found us! 

There is a lot of information on this page and it is updated frequently. No fancy design but just the best place to learn about Northstar Canoes and a great place to begin your quest. I add new info, vids and pics here all the time so make sure to bookmark!

We bring several loads of Northstar Canoes to the dealer network out West (see incoming orders, current inventory and A LOT of info below). We support through demoes, videos and events. We love these canoes and love to share the Northstar Experience. I’ve been paddling Ted Bell/Yost designed canoes since 1996. Just give an email or a call and let’s talk canoes! It is not just about specs and weights. There is a feel to every canoe in the line and I can help shed light and help you ask the right questions to guide you to the right choice.



Vids, Tips and Reviews:

ADK Pack Canoes Reviewed

First Take on the new Northstar Pearl

Northstar Northwind 17 Stealth Overview

Setting up a Northstar Phoenix

Northwind Solo Blacklite Wood Trim Quick View

ADK Overview in the Canoe Cathedral

Northstar ADK Hike and Paddle

Northstar Phoenix vs NW Solo

Northstar Phoenix Overview and On-Water Review

Northstar Firebird vs Bell Flashfire

Solo Canoe Instruction at Sparks Lake

Northstar Canoe Solo Demo Sessions

Learn about Seat Height Here

Northstar Polaris Review

Northstar Northwind 16 Review

Solo and Tandem Canoe Stroke Tips- Brace, J and C Stroke, Draw

ADK Solo “Time in Boat” with Paxton

Northstar Northwind Solo “Time in Boat” Overview

Northstar Magic in a Minute Overview

How to size a canoe paddle

Northstar Trillium vs Firebird

Northstar Northwind Solo vs Clipper Solitude

Northstar Firebird Solo Canoe “Time in Boat” Overview

Northstar Magic vs Northwind Solo

Northwind Solo with Dog

Trillium and Northwind Solo Demo

Northstar Canoes down the Deschutes River

Photo Gallery

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Current Inventory and Upcoming Deliveries

Key to Shorthand Below: KT = Kneeling Thwart (I put ’em on the models that should have them IMO)  KD = Kneeling Drops (these are easy to change post purchase) AL = Aluminum Trim  WD = Wood Trim  E6 = E6 Carbon Trim (saves 1-2 lbs)  Internal Skids = Extra reinforcement internal in bow/stern (still smooth exterior)  AFB = Aluminum Footbrace    CFB = Carbon Foot Brace   WW Eyelets = Eyelets installed along rivets of Alum Trim (makes for easier bag outfitting)

Happy Paddlin’ Stock Bend OR as of 7.20.23

2 ADK LT Starlite Aluminum Trim Lounger Seat AL Footbrace (no foot pedals) 

1 ADK 12 Starlite Wood Trim Trim Lounger Seat AL Footbrace (no foot pedals)

1 NW Solo Stealth Kneeling Drop 

1 NW Solo Blacklite Wood Trim Kneeling Drop 

1 Ocoee Outfitted 

1 Polaris Blacklite Wood Trim KT 

1 Northwind 16 Starlite Wood Trim KT

1 Pearl Starlite Emerald Green with Wood Trim Sold

Demo Inventory Now for Sale

All used canoe sales are final and not available for return but we do often buy back canoes from upgrading paddlers at reasonable prices or trades.

1 Phoenix IXP Alum Trim WW eyelets Kneeling drops $2700.00 SOLD

1 NW Solo Blacklite E6 Trim $3275.00

1 Magic Blacklite Wood Trim Alum Footbrace $3200.00

1 Polaris WhiteGold Red Wood Trim Kneeling Thwart $3200.00

1 NW 17 Starlite Alum Trim KT $2750.00


Fall 2023 Northstar Order  ~ Early October ’23 Delivery. 46/46 canoes on order, truck full!


Happy Paddlin/Ebersold Distribution (25 Canoes)

Accessories 8.25.23

40 Trapezoid Pads

4 Weathered Trucker Hat

4 Bucket Hat

12 Daisy Chain Bulk

12 Web Rings Bulk

4 48″ Vinyl Floatation Bags

4 48″ Nylon Floatation Bags

4 60″ Vinyl Floatation Bags

4 60″ Nylon Floatation Bags

4 Kneeling drops with Hardware

2 Combi drops with Hardware

1 Pedestal A la Carte (no footbraces)

Added 8.10.23

1 Magic Blacklite E6 Carbon Trim Carbon Footbrace (added 8.10.23)

1 Magic Starlite Alum Trim Alum Footbrace (added 8.10.23) Change NW18 BL Wood Trim Seats not installed

1 NW Solo Blacklite Wood Trim KD (added 8.10.23)

1 Pearl Starlite Wood Trim Emerald Green (added 8.10.23) Change NW18 BL Wood Trim Seats not installed

4 ADK 12s Starlite Alum Trim Lounger Seat Alum Footbrace (no drilled footbraces) (added 8.10.23)

1 Firebird IXP Alum Trim KD ww eyelets (added 8.10.23)

1 NW 16 Starlite Alum Trim KT (added 8.10.23) Change NW18 BL Wood Trim Seats not installed

Previously Confirmed:

1 Outrage IXP Outfitted Alum Trim (or wood if needed) SOLD Shaw

1 NW Solo IXP Alum Trim KD , ww eyelets, alum footbrace SOLD PO Craven

1 Phoenix IXP Alum Trim KD ww eyelets SOLD PO Payer

1 Firebird IXP Emerald Green Wood Trim KD

2 Phoenix IXP Alum Trim WW Eyelets KD

2 Trillium Starlite Alum Trim KD

1 Trillium BL WD Trim KD

1 NW Solo IXP Wood Trim KD

1 Polaris Starlite Alum Trim KT Change NW18 BL Wood Trim Seats not installed

1 Pearl Starlite Alum Trim Change NW20 BL Wood Trim 4 seats

1 Pearl Starlite Wood Trim

1 B17 IXP Alum Trim WW Eyelets Lining Holes Change NW18 BL Wood Trim Seats not installed

1 NW 17 BlackLite WD Trim KT Sold Kents

Headwaters Adventure Company (1 Canoe)

1 B16 Blacklite Alum Trim

Alder Creek Kayak and Canoe (7 canoes)

Ash Sitting Drops x3
Ash Kneeling Drops x2
Walnut Sitting Drops x1
Knee Pad x6
Trapezoid Pad x6
2 Northwind 16 BL Alu KT 
1 Northwind 16 BL Wood, KT Internal Skids 
2 Northwind 17 SL Alum Trim
1 Northwind Solo BL Wood KD Internal Skids 
1 Magic BL E6 Internal Skids Carbon Footbrace

Northern Lights 5 canoes

1 Phoenix IXP Wood Trim. Lining holes installed. Seat uninstalled – include sitting drops. Thwarts installed 37 1/4″ from centerline to bolt holes of thwarts. Include Ash yoke uninstalled. (added 8.10.23)

1 Polaris Blacklite Alum Trim ww eyelets Alum footbrace

1 Pearl Blacklite Wood Trim Alum Footbrace

1 Pearl Blacklite Alum Trim Alum Footbrace

1 Trillium Blacklite Alum Trim ww eyelets Alum footbrace

See above from Ethan Stock and delivery this here: 1 NW 17 BlackLite WD Trim KT Sold Kents

Kent’s Canoe and Kayak Spokane WA (8 canoes)

1 ADK 12 StarLite Alum Trim Lounger seat Alum footbrace (no foot pedals)
1 ADK 12 StarLite Wood Trim Lounger seat Alum footbrace (no foot pedals)
1 Pearl StarLite Alum trim
1 Pearl StarLite Wood Trim Ruby
1 Pearl StarLite Wood Trim Emerald Green
1 Pearl BlackLite Wood Trim 
2 Northwind 17 StarLite Alum trim KT

Price Sheet (click below image to enlarge to full size to see better). Dealers also often charge destination charge/Freight. These prices below do not include Freight charges. Freight is often $150-$250/canoe. Call your dealer to determine your actual freight rate. Price subject to change (especially these days). No price is “locked in” at time of ordering. Please consult your dealer if you have an order on file with them.

2022/2023 Price List (click for larger image):


BUY HERE: Western US Northstar Canoe Retailers:

Alder Creek Kayak and Canoe (Portland OR)  503.285.0464

See Alder Creek’s inventory of Northstar (and some other brands) CLICK HERE

Kent’s Canoe and Kayak (Spokane WA) 509-328-0239

Inventory as of October 2022:


Ebersold Distribution (Bend OR) 503.572.3848 (the distributor to all these dealers)

Northern Lights Rivers Lakes and Ocean/The Barn (Bozeman MT and Kalispell MT) (406) 586-6029

As of 4.9.23:

1 Phoenix BL Wood Internal Skids Sitting Drops

1 Phoenix IXP Alum Trim WW eyelets Internal Skids Alum Foot brace Kneeling position

1 Phoenix Blacklite WW eyelets Alum Trim Kneeling Position Alum Footbrace Internal Skids

1 Northwind 16 Blacklite 16 Stern Footbrace Alum Trim

1 B17 Blacklite Wood Trim Kneeling Thwart

1 Polaris BL Kneeling Thwart Alum Trim

1 Northwind 17 Blacklite Alum Trim WW eyelets

1 Northwind Solo Blacklite Alum Trim Footbrace

Trailhead Missoula MT  406-543-6966

As of 2.15.23:
B16 Starlite Alum trim 
NW 17 Starlite w/ bow slider and foot brace QTY-2 Alum trim 
NW 16 Blacklite Alum trim 
NW 16 Starlite Alum trim 
Phoenix Blacklite w/ WW eyelets sitting drops Alum trim 


Jefferson State Adventure Hub Redding CA  (530) 768-5055

Please also don’t hesitate to call or email Ethan, who loves talking anything canoes, directly at 503.572.3848 or email

Northstar’s Warranty

Northstar Canoes are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship, to the original retail consumer, for the usable life of the canoe as defined by wear. Northstar Canoes will repair or replace hulls or components at our option. The customer is responsible for transportation costs to and from the Northstar Canoes factory in Princeton, MN. This warranty does not cover normal wear, nor damage resulting from abuse, alteration or unauthorized repair; also not covered are damage caused by driving over loose bow ropes, canoes taking flight on highways, loans to best friends, and incidents involving canoes that should’ve been removed prior to entering the garage. A copy of the original store receipt is necessary for all warranty claims.

Current Demo and Used Inventory Bend OR (9) 8.15.23:
These will be used in my fleet spring/summer ’23 and then depending on incoming loads they will be replaced with new demo models. Generally, these are 1-2 year old models, stored indoors and in very good condition and priced 15% (+/- 5% depending on condition) off list price.

1 Firebird StarLite Wood Kneeling Drops $2850.00

1 Phoenix IXP Alum Trim WW eyelets Kneeling drops $2700.00 SOLD

1 NW Solo Blacklite E6 Trim $3275.00

1 Magic Blacklite Wood Trim Alum Footbrace $3200.00

1 Polaris WhiteGold Red Wood Trim Kneeling Thwart $3200.00

1 NW 17 Starlite Alum Trim KT $2750.00

Learn more about IXP Lamination HERE.

Educational Videos and Learning about Northstar Canoes

Thanks to Headwaters Kayak for the vids.


What is the deal with Northstar Canoes?

5/28/20 from Mike:

 I just purchased a Northstar Phoenix IXP thru Ethan Ebersold (Happy Paddlin) and could not be more pleased with the canoe or Ethan. He was laser focused on matching me up with the right canoe and configuration – making helpful recommendations and being responsive at every turn. Seldom does one run into an individual that provides competive pricing, looks after the customer’s best interest, and then overdelivers in the service and support end. That’s Ethan. I would highly recommend Ethan to any level of paddler.

I think this email I received from a recent purchase of a Northwind 16 Starlight Wood Trim w/ Kneeling thwart sums it all up:

“Ethan: In approximate order from mission-critical to mission-perfected, here are impressions of our first paddle in our Northstar Northwind 16, StarLite, wood trim (after having spent an enjoyable summer in the same boat with aluminum trim and white gold layup and the year before that in a much heavier, older canoe):
1. It floats.
2. It does not leak.
3. The wood trim is comfortable when a leg leans against it or a hand touches it while paddling.
4. It is fast and very responsive.
5. The sense of secondary stability in a Northwind 16 is incredible — like the difference between a ski that knows how to arc a fast turn and one that doesn’t have a clue.
6. The lower weight isn’t just easier to carry — I believe we also feel it on the water in responsiveness.
7. Very subjective, but it seems like the wood trim gives the boat a more natural feel for the water.  I don’t know what that means, but I am pretty sure it is true.
8. The bow and stern decks are stunning.  For example, for the bow paddler, it’s hard to see the point of taking a picture of the river without having the bow deck included. “Photobomb” design, I would say.
9. While we will be storing this (with care) outside, I am half tempted to hang it from the ceiling in our living room as art.
10.Despite its gorgeous looks, the whole package just screams “Stop staring and get me onto the waternow!”  That’s why we played hooky from work yesterday and did so!”

Here is another more simply put testimonial with picture from Fall ’16:

“What could be better than this? I love my canoes!” (Nwind 17 white gold, Magic Starlite)



“The Seamline”

Your Northstar canoe is not made in two pieces. The seam line is simply showing the process of how they build this canoe. Essentially the seam line is the bellybutton of a Northstar canoe that has high shoulder tumblehome. 

All canoes with aggressive high shoulder tumblehome have to be built in a two-piece mold. This means that they laminate the kevlar/carbon/glass/resin materials into the mold (all one piece) and after the boat has cured, the mold has to open up to remove the canoe.

Northstar uses a thin seam tape to cover the seam in the mold so that resin doesn’t leak through this crack. A finished Northstar canoe tells the story line similar to how a fossil tells the reflection of an animal that rested against the now fossilized material. There is no structural downfall to this feature. It is essentially just a different texture because the seam line tape texture is different than the rest of the fiberglass mold’s texture. Northstar Canoe’s are hand built and reflect the process of how these craftsman have developed the process. Hopefully you’ll come to appreciate this little feature that tells a wonderful story and offers unmatched performance. I find it kinda unique and cute like a belly button. 



Want to learn more about this “seamline”? Here is a such a great write-up from Northstar Canoe’s Bear Paulson (who is a Canoe Voyager in every sense of the term):

“Let me explain why our boats have a seam line. There are a couple ways to build the seating area of a solo canoe. Historically solo canoes were built with tumblehome in the center. The original Bell Canoes, built 25 years ago were built with tumblehome – these boats – the original Merlin, Traveller, etc, have been long since retired. Tumblehome means that the widest part of the canoe is only a couple inches above the waterline. From that point the canoe gets narrower up to the gunwales – it tumbles home. Tumblehome allows a canoe to be made wide enough at the waterline to have good initial stability and carrying capacity, while also being narrow enough at the gunwales so that the paddler doesn’t have to reach over a wide canoe or bang their hands on the gunwales. Sounds great, right? The problem with it is two-fold. First, when a wave hits the side of a canoe with tumblehome, the water tumbles home – it follows the tumblehome right into your lap – it makes for a wet canoe. Second, having the canoe begin narrowing just above the waterline creates a canoe with poor secondary stability. The best way to create secondary stability is by flaring the canoe all the way to the gunwales. The most stable canoes are those that constantly flare – they keep getting wider. This is because when leaned over due to rough conditions a canoe with flare keeps getting wider, more stable and therefore more resistant to capsize. The rougher the conditions the more stable a flared canoe becomes.

For years designers knew tumblehome wasn’t the perfect solution for solo canoes, but they couldn’t come up with anything better. Then David Yost and Bell Canoe created shouldered flare. Every Bell built since ~1995 and every Northstar that can be paddled solo is built with shouldered flare. Shouldered flare creates the driest solo canoes available. This is because the flare is carried almost to the gunwales. The widest part of one of our canoes with shouldered flare is right where the shoulder begins. If you look at one of our shouldered canoes from the bow or stern, the last few inches below the gunwale look like the profile of a human shoulder (very from front or back, the gunwale being a couple inches up your neck). Effectively what we managed to do is create a canoe with the benefits of both flare (dry, great secondary stability) and tumblehome (comfortable to paddle).

Now, on to your specific question. Canoes with shouldered flare require a complicated and expensive two piece mold. We build canoes in female molds. Prior to building the canoe we put clay in the seam between the two halves of the mold. When it’s time to remove the canoe from the mold, a canoe with shouldered flare requires the mold to be separated to get the canoe out. We build the canoe in one piece and then separate the mold to remove it, because it’s such a complex shape. The seam line that you see and Ethan referred to is the result of the clay and the two piece mold. Think of the seam line as a mark of the most advanced canoe design available.

Lastly, for many years at Bell we built molds with longitudinal seams – running the length of the keel line. Then we came up with transverse seams – splitting the mold across the width of the canoe. The two advantages to transverse seams became readily apparent. First, the seam line on a solo canoe is about 5 ft long, instead of 17 ft. Second, as we built new molds in the last few years of Bell in Minnesota, we noticed that our oldest molds with longitudinal seams had sagged very slightly. In essence the canoes were getting less arched, flatter, as the molds sagged. Molds with 17 ft seams created weakness that allowed the mold to slightly sag. Going to a transverse seam made for molds with much greater structure, no chance of sagging. That allows us to produce consistent canoe throughout the life of a mold.
Thank you for choosing a Northstar. There’s a few reasons paddlers love our solo canoes and one of those is shouldered flare.”

Here is a picture of the 2 piece mold discussed above. You can see where the seam line is created from the tape/clay placement within the mold when building the high shouldered models:

2 piece mold pic


%d bloggers like this: