Smallest, lightest, and best?

Discussion in 'Boating' started by jeremiad, May 23, 2007.

  1. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    2,207
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    Okay, you're facing a good fishing day with no buddies present. You want to launch out from shore, but you're facing a major effort in hauling the big boat and trying to launch it yourself. What do you do?

    Does anyone have any ideas about a small boat that can be strapped to the car roof, launched by a single person, yet reliable enough to handle a small lake in good weather?

    I have seen several lightweight plastic jobs, and have heard of some portable boats, but have never tried one.

    I'm considering something a little bigger than a kayak or tube float! :tounge_out:

    Thanks!
     
  2. kkattfish

    kkattfish New Member

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    9
    State:
    AZ
    I have a 10ft aluminum boat that i can take in the back of my truck and it is light enough to launch it from shore with 1 person. add a nice 40-50 trolling motor and you're set all day. Make an ice chest livewell to keep your bait or fish alive.
    When i am alone with my bigger 18ft boat, i launch from the ramp tie off to the dock then walk back to my truck and park it then walk back down to my boat. This option depends on if you have a dock. You can also just anchor it a little off shore if you do not have a dock. If you have tide changes, be sure to pull your truck far enough out of the water so that you don't come back to a half sunk truck
     

  3. Wabash River Bear

    Wabash River Bear New Member

    Messages:
    3,019
    State:
    Indiana
    I dont understand the problem, I launch and load my 1652 alone with very little if any trouble.
     
  4. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel New Member

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    353
    State:
    NC
    MY "small" boat is and has been a 16" Coleman Scanoe for the past 25 years. It has been used from from the blackwater and tidewater creeks of the eastern swamps to the fast running streams of the mountains and everything in between. Basically it is a 16' flat bottom boat with a semi V front end and a square stern. It is just as home on a lake in good weather as it is running a creek or class I river.
    I have carried it on my car top with carrier bars and straps or on a flat bed utility trailer. Under all conditions I have used it alone in both both rivers and lakes.
    We fished the local 900+ acre city lake for years with the Scanoe and a 1.2 HP Aqua Bug two stroke engine. I recently found a two stroke 5 HP Suzuki for it and we will be hitting the river as soon as I can put together a rock guard for it.
     
  5. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel New Member

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    353
    State:
    NC
    That is what he means I guess.
     
  6. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    Yep, that's what I really mean. I have been considering my options for single-fisherman, relatively low-budget solutions, in "packages" that can be quickly and easily handled by one person.

    I have isolated the following options: Porta-Bote, fishing kayaks, and canoes.

    Of these, the fishing kayaks (especially by Heritage) seem to be the best choice, even though I specifically said "no kayak"!

    Does anyone have any experience with kayak fishing? Maybe this warrants a new thread...
     
  7. bolivar 0637

    bolivar 0637 New Member

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    37
    State:
    Alma, Arkansas
    I bought a Mad River Synergy a few days ago, I have only had it out one time and just caught a couple of small bass. We were fishing a small lake at the time but I plan to use it in the local creeks also. I am not a expert with a canoe or kayak but I think it is going to work out fine. It is a sit-on-top type that is considered a hybrid kayak/canoe that is 12' long and weights about 60 lbs. I haul it in a small pickup with a bed extender. I normally go with someone else but I think I could load it by myself if necessary.
     
  8. SunburntAgain

    SunburntAgain New Member

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    78
    State:
    Tulsa, OK
    Ive got an old alumcraft 14' aluminum semi V, that I can easily drag around by myself for short distances to get it into the water. It only weighs around 250 lbs, and is stable and roomy for one person and gear. I don't see you strapping it on top of your car though. A canoe might be a good solution for you if you want to put it on your roof. Find a square stern canoe, and you can put a trolling motor or small outboard engine on the back of it and go places most other boats cant.
     
  9. jeremy0000

    jeremy0000 New Member

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    24
    State:
    FLORIDA
  10. samh

    samh New Member

    Messages:
    807
    State:
    Damascus,Arkansas
    I've got a 16" Coleman Scanoe, too. Had it since the 70's and its a good cross between a flatbottom and a canoe, but I've also got a Coleman Crawdad, 11 foot plastic flatbottom, It doesn't paddle as easy as the Scone, but with a trolling motor it's a lot better fishing platform and easier to load and launch because it's shorter. For float'n fairly swift creeks I go with the Scanoe, for fish'n ponds, small lakes or quiet creeks I like the Crawdad better.
     
  11. ggoytia

    ggoytia New Member

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    106
    State:
    Texas, Fort Worth
    Evening Gents,
    I understand you do not have a thing for kayaks but to be completly honest with you there are alot of advantages to owning one. I am 5'10' 280 and i have two kayaks that I load up with fishing rods, fish finder, gps, and a 5 gallon bait thank powered by a 12 volt battery and a bilge pump. Do a google search on a Cobra Fish and Dive (12.5')or a Malibu X Factor (15'). They are
    very reliable and easy to move around. I have spent the last 3 years fishing in the the Pacific for Hailbut and other large fish and have also fished Mexican waters in 8 foot swells with out. If your ever in the DFW area give me a holler and you can give them a try!
     
  12. 223Smitty

    223Smitty New Member

    Messages:
    478
    State:
    Indiana
    About 10 years ago I bought one of those 2-man bass boats from BPS, for the same reasons you're wanting. I fished mostly smaller lakes/ponds.

    I believe it was a Bass Tracker, around $500, and if I remember correctly was classified as a pontoon. There were days I'd spend 12-16 hours in it, sometimes alone, sometimes with partner. I had no complaints whatsoever about it, it was a great little boat, had storage, and 2-swivel seats that slid forward & aft or could be removed completely. It would scoot-along the water pretty good with a #30 trolling motor.

    Several sporting goods stores carry them, check them out. I have had canoes too, but liked the stability of the other boat better, you could stand & stretch your legs if you needed. Will fit into the back of a truck, or I'm sure would ride ontop with a good set of racks.

    Smitty
     
  13. Katmandeux

    Katmandeux New Member

    Messages:
    1,618
    State:
    Checotah, Oklahoma
    I just went through this drill, and here's what I came up with.

    I wanted something large enough to stand up, and move around in (like for throwing a cast net, for instance), without living on the edge of Capsize City, and it needed to have enough sea-keeping ability so that I didn't feel like I was taking big chances in a 15 knot wind.

    At the same time, I wanted something small enough, and light enough, to allow me to launch it anywhere, by myself. I definately did not want to be married to boat ramps, and it had to be tough enough to stand up to dragging it over rocks/gravel/sand/stumps, etc.

    I first thought of car-topping, until I realized it takes me longer to put a canoe on top of my truck, and get it tied down, than it does to put a boat on a trailer.

    I ended up with a Lund 12' aluminum semi-vee that weighs 164#, and a 9.8hp four-stroke Nissan that weighs 82#, on a lightweight trailer. I can't even tell it's behind my Toyota Tacoma, and my four-wheeler handles it just fine.

    I hope this helps.
     
  14. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    Gus,

    I have to admit that, since I posted this thread, I have been doing a lot of research and have found that the kayak angler packages are outstanding.

    The Heritage Redfish 12' Angler is a SOT kayak that has rod holders and livewell. At 61 pounds though, it is at the top range of what I would want to maneuver onto the top of the car by myself. The Featherlight 12' is 50 pounds, but is a SIK that provides a drier ride, but is harder to get in and out.

    With an entire, well outfitted fishing platform for under $1,000, it does look like kayaks are the way to go.
     
  15. hossdaniels

    hossdaniels New Member

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    17
    State:
    north carolina
    I sold my kayak to buy a 10' plastic pontoon. The new boat should be here in a week or so. I hope it will be better for the small lakes I fish. Atleast I will have a live well, fishdinder, and a trolling motor. To me that makes fishing alot easier:big_smile:. I'll have around $1150 in it when its ready.
     
  16. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    I tried the Heritage Redfish 12' Angler at a Hudson Trail Outfitters Boat Demo at Lake Needwood in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The Redfish was outstanding! Effortless to paddle, high initial stability, good tracking, and quite fast. I was impressed.

    I broke down and purchased the kayak. I got a complete (I mean complete) package, ready to go for about $1,200. If anyone is interested, I would be willing to provide more details about what a "complete package" is.
     
  17. crazy

    crazy New Member

    Messages:
    2,090
    State:
    Kansas CIty, MO
    Agreed, I launch my 20 foot boat with or without people with me. It's all the same. If your boat is to much for you maybe you should sell it?
     
  18. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    I've seen inflatable pontoons, but not plastic; sounds interesting. I looked at the inflatable options, but couldn't bring myself to seriously consider them (hooks around inflatables just don't sound right :crazy:)!

    I'm not sure why you would sell a kayak for another option; your reasons would be interesting to hear. Considering that the yak I bought comes with three rod holders, a place for mounting fishfinders, etc., anchor system, and places for bait bucket, crate or cooler, I can't see how any other option could be better.

    The $1,200 package include life vest, kayak cover, carrying cart, roof mount system, carbon shaft paddle, and floor under my deck to store it on. This is everything but rods and tackle! :smile2: