What's a safe boat size in the ocean?


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  1. #1
    Terry
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    Default What's a safe boat size in the ocean?

    What do yall think is the smallest safe size for running a few miles off shore? I've never done it but I might. I have a little 16' center console. It has kinda high sides. It's not a flats boat or nothing like that. I know people do crazier stuff, but what's yalls opinion.


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    Steven Stewart
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    ive been several mile out in a 17 footer and even a few miles out in a 15 footer. both on calm days though


  3. #3
    bobby

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    24ft is the smallest i would go and if im going way out to the gulf stream it better have twin out boards or a big diesel moter

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    Dickie
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    The thing about fishing the ocean is not the size of the boat ,but the knowledge of the one running the boat . Someone that knows the area can take a 14 ft alum boat safely some where offshore that another in a 20 ft boat should not go for thier safety. Where a 14-16 boat can go today to fish ,tomorrow you might need a 24-30 ft the next day to get to the same place an fish . I have fished regularly 15- 25 mile out off Wrightsville Bch . N .C. in a 17 ft scout ,but i know the area an pick my days .Some days a 45 fter would not have been big enough for me to go there in. In my opinion use the biggest boat you can an pick your days ,just rember if it' s a little ruff reshedule your trip ,or fish inshore or in the sound . as a general rule in a day or 2 it will calm back down an you can go offshore to fish. But if you go when its to ruff for your boat an you don,t make it back that's was your last fishing trip .

    Just my thoughts

  5. #5
    Zeke
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    I take my 16.5' in the ocean on calm days, you just have to pay attention to the weather.
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  6. #6
    Mark Johnson
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jollymon View Post
    The thing about fishing the ocean is not the size of the boat ,but the knowledge of the one running the boat . Someone that knows the area can take a 14 ft alum boat safely some where offshore that another in a 20 ft boat should not go for thier safety. Where a 14-16 boat can go today to fish ,tomorrow you might need a 24-30 ft the next day to get to the same place an fish . I have fished regularly 15- 25 mile out off Wrightsville Bch . N .C. in a 17 ft scout ,but i know the area an pick my days .Some days a 45 fter would not have been big enough for me to go there in. In my opinion use the biggest boat you can an pick your days ,just rember if it' s a little ruff reshedule your trip ,or fish inshore or in the sound . as a general rule in a day or 2 it will calm back down an you can go offshore to fish. But if you go when its to ruff for your boat an you don,t make it back that's was your last fishing trip .

    Just my thoughts
    Best answer by Jolly.
    All the boat in the world is still dependent on the captain's ability.
    I've been in a billfish tournament where only one boat made it out of the inlet one day.
    It was a 60 foot Hatteras.

    On the other hand I've seen a 14' jon boat 6 miles out fishing a wreck.
    Alot variables in the big pond and those variables work in your favor together or against you together.
    Tides and wind. Alot is dependent on an onshore or offshore wind then throw in a incoming tide or outgoing tide.
    It can either be fantastic boating or deadly boating.

    I know a guy that built a 16 foot dory with 40 horse motor and drove it from Miami to the Bahamas.
    He is a retired airline pilot. Knows the weather and is an above average boat captain.
    Just because he can do it doesn't mean anyone could.
    Don't forget, it can change in a matter of minutes too.

  7. #7
    Preston Hobbs
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    a 200 footer.imho

  8. #8
    Mark Johnson
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    You take a 24 footer out in 6 foot swells and you'll feel real small.
    Hard to explain but your first time out going against the "grain" aint much problem but it's a rough and sometimes wet ride.
    Then you start asking yourself, how the hell do I turn this thing around to go back in without flipping.

    On top of a wave. Wave dancing.:smile-big:
    I've had a bunch of moments in a 24 footer where you really dreaded turning around. It's un nerving
    It's a timing thing.
    Depends on how the waves or swells are running. Swells aren't much of a problem. You get waves running in tight sets it's a bear. The ocean owns you in a small boat.
    You hear terms you don't hear much on fresh water like broaching.
    Broaching is when you stuff the bow. It's a bad broach when the bow sticks and the stern passes the bow. Some boats are bad for broaching.

    Folks that go out in the ocean alot in big or small boats generally have a great feel for boat handling and how well a boat does or doesn't handle. Most of us never consider how a boat really handles.
    Some boats are dogs in salt. Others are up to it.
    When I say handle, there is more to it then how she drives. It's how the boat acts and reacts.
    Going back to the boats that are broach prone. You can put some of those guys on the helm of such a boat and before they get out of the marina they can tell you if it's a broacher or not. It's the feel.

    High sides for the ocean.
    You don't have to have high sides. I'd rather have a high bow and a closed transom myself.
    Water coming over the sides has never been my problem. What comes over the bow or rolls in over the stern is what gets you wet. The pangas are a good example.

    When to fish.
    When it's rough. Slick cam days the bite seems to be slow.
    It's the days when you leave the rod in the rod holder to reel fish in because it's so rough seems to be the good days from my experience. The days when you want to tie yourself in the boat. The days when you come in battered and bruised from being thrown about.
    The days when you step out of the boat onto the dock and have to pause to regain the land legs.
    Those are usually the days I've had something to stick a knife in.

    It's a whole different ballgame then a lake in more ways then one. Less forgiving for sure.


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