Best of both worlds - Fly Fishing Forum
Inflatable Watercraft Rafts, pontoon boats, kickboats, etc.

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Old 07-28-2005, 05:26 AM
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AdrianV AdrianV is offline
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Best of both worlds

After using a U-boat for many years I am now considering to buy a pontoon next to it.
Ideally it would be an inflatable pontoon with a small electric outboard as I would like to use it on big slow flowing rivers and inshore fly fishing.
I have no experience with pontoons so started looking for info on the Internet. Found great looking ones, with standing decks, lean bars, rear decks and engine mounts.
But I am a bit worried about the fact that with all the ones I saw you are sitting quite high up. Itís great to move but I want to be able to use my feet with a couple of fins in order to have my hands free as soon as I get to the intended spot. Anchoring is not often an option and I have my doubts about a drift-sock (wind and current in the same direction?)

So what I am looking for is the best of both worlds between a U-boat and a pontoon, or perhaps the simple solution is to install a height adjustable seat on a high-riding one? As said I have no experience with pontoons.

Any suggestions towards a best solution or leads to specific brands of boats that covered this already are very welcome.

Thanks Adrian
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Old 07-28-2005, 05:04 PM
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Hi Adrian -

I've been looking at bigger pontoons lately as well... amazing how they can be 'tricked out'.

With larger pontoons, powering by flipper is not really practical IMHO. I find even the smaller ones marginal at best to move with flippers in wind or current. I could be wrong, but they are really oar-driven devices. A small motor would be a good option.

I have the Bucks Bag Bronco, very nice transport vehicle for rivers to class III and short sessions on the coast.
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Old 08-05-2005, 03:24 AM
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I am afraid you are probably right Juro. Best bet might be a not too big pontoon in order to still be able to kick some bit in position. Real moving with oars and/or a small Minn Kota. So although Scaddens Skykomish Sunrise looks very tempting it will probably be a smaller one like the Colorado River by Trout Unlimited. Just have to find out how that one behaves with flippers.
Thanks for your reply.
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Old 08-05-2005, 05:46 AM
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Scaddens pontoons are actually not what I meant by 'large', I am not familiar with the Sky' (well the river but not the boat) but I believe it's about the same size as the Bronco. It can be powered but when fishing rivers I found wearing flippers to be a very dangerous proposition because one can not stand up and the abilty to maneuver with the feet along the shore was much more critical than a bit of propulsion mid-stream. Of course I prefer to fish from the bank and use the pontoon for transportation. But even getting in and out with flippers it was very iffy to downright treacherous in a current with flippers.

A motor would be good but the method to raise it from the water must be very quick in a river, and the battery weight minimized. At first thought it seems an even bigger pontoon would work better with a motor.

I know people will differ in opinion but I had an absolute rule on the irver - no anchoring in current. A pontoon boat does not have enough leverage in the current to help you yank a stuck anchor. Not worth trying IMHO.

Good luck!
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Old 08-09-2005, 05:05 PM
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Thanks for your concern Juro. I can imagine what you mean on your rivers. Allow me to show you what rivers in Holland are like.
I'll also show you the inshore condition the pontoon will be used in. For those in our region: IMHO this is the only inshore place safely fishable with regular bellyboats and pontoons, the so called "Blokkendam" west of Rotterdam. One of the premier spots for fly fishing for European Sea bass in Holland. This dam is made of concrete blocks 6'x6'x6', creating a completely closed kind of lagoon protruding into the North Sea. So one cannot drift to the open sea. Enjoy it while it lasts: within a couple of years it will be land creating an industrial estate being an extension of the Rotterdam harbour!!
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