I'm a fishing enthusiast wishing I had a Aluminum Jon Boat, but limited by several
1) Money (would really like to stay in the 1K ball park)
2) Storage space (I figure
3) No trailer or SUV to pull this thing (I've got a sedan)
I'm looking on the net for info and so far the most promising thing I'm
seeing is a Sea Eagle 10.6 R for about $1200. I plan to restrict use to
lakes and rivers. I don't know what kind of motor power I need on rivers
with a strong current (I'm in Washington state and like to fish in the
Snoqualimie and other Eastside rivers.)
Any suggestions? Anyone have experience with this brand or have better
-A long time ago I seriously thought about inflatables. But...
...it gets to be a real drag, inflating, and deflating before and after
...then you have very little inside area as the inflated hull intrudes
into it so much.
...eventually leaks develop and the seams start to let go. Leaks aren't
a problem but the
A 12 to 14 foot Jon boat aluminum or plastic is a lot better, 14 foot is
the better of the two.
A small trailer for it is not a problem for a small car. It doesn't
weigh all that much.
As a matter of fact a 14 foot jon boat aluminum and a trailer cost about
$845 dollars at
one of the big Sporting Goods chain stores. You can get a used
outboard or a new one, I would
suggest around 5 hp would work good. I got a Johnson 4hp twin for
myself as it weighs 33 pounds
and is easier to carry from the car to the river shore through the
brush and mud (I just drag the
boat down to the river bank in this case, no boat launch ramp). But a
5 or 7 hp motor would
probably suit you better in stronger currents.
The electric trolling motor is nice, but I only use it to sneak into a
area for fishing, and for
emergencies should something go wrong with the outboard. I also have a
collapsable long aluminum
push pole for moving around with too.
I also thought seriously about the Portabote folding boat, but I could
get a 14foot aluminum
jon boat trailer and outboard for around $1200 follars total also, so I
didn't get the
Besides, having the boat on the trailer makes a dandy place for all that
camping gear that
doesn't fit in the car. They can put trailer hitches on everything
nowadays. A 14 foot
jon boat, trailer, and outboard still totals up less than 500 pounds
-I think it depends where you're fishing. There are some many lakes, streams,
sloughs, etc. here in BC that have no boatlaunch, or at best a gravel beach. A
canoe or inflatable are the best for them. I've taken Vinyl Valerie (3-man
SeaHawk) to Champion Lakes on my motorbike - caught my first trout on a fly
ever! If there's at least a gravel beach, you can probably drag a small aluminum
cartopper to the water.
He also mentioned storage: a 12 or 14-ft boat needs a place to stay - even
more so if you have to use a trailer (ie can't throw it on top of your vehicle,
stored by dangling from the roof of the garage). Again, an inflatable or a canoe
is the solution if storage is a problem.
OTOH, even a 12-ft aluminum cartopper is MUCH more boat than an inflatable,
or even a canoe. If you're going on bigger lakes, ocean bays, rivers, etc. you
probably want a 12-14ft. You COULD go to a zodiak-type inflatable, but that's
WAY over your budget.