How necessary is a boat?
I'm just starting to fish again since I was a kid two decades ago. The more I fish, the more I feel like I "need" a boat; even if it's just a kayak. It feels totally unnatural to reel a bait towards the shore and I want to reach all the little alcoves and such. I also want to be able to retrieve some of my lures I couldn't get to. Long story short, if I want to continue fishing seriously, is a boat basically necessary?
A boat becomes necessary when you are targeting specific species and want to cover more ‘ground’ on the lake. But fish move in and out of shallows during daily and seasonal cycles, so it’s not always an advantage being in a boat.
I have a boat. But I often find myself anchoring close to the shorelines where it would have been just as easy to hit the same spots from shore.
That said, I have so many more options with a boat, since I can hit the shallows or the depths at any time. And I can get to spots on a lake that shore fisherman can’t, like a marshy cove or densely wooded area, where lots of fish are hanging out.
As you get more serious about fishing, a boat certainly does add to the enjoyment and diversity of options you have. And if you’re mostly fishing calm inland lake waters, a kayak or a Jon boat are great ways to achieve this without breaking the bank.
But if you’re a serious fisherman, you’ll always be wondering what it would be like to have that next step up. Up until last year, I didn’t understand why a bass boat was any better than my bow rider for fishing. But after getting hooks stuck in seats, getting fish slime or blood and worm dirt all over my floors, having to anchor every time I stop (instead of using a trolling motor), not being able to get into weedy shallows, and smacking windshields or Bimini poles while casting, I daydream of what things would be like with a souped up bass boat.
Thanks for the thorough answer. Your explanation essentially confirms my suspicions. BTW, my brother in law has a real deal bass boat and it's phenomenal. I went out with him once and it's really good at what it's designed to be. For me though, a kayak really doesn't cost much and I like the idea of adding some exercise into my fishing days. I'm doing it!
Go for it man! I think you’ll find a whole new level of enjoyment. Be safe and tight lines!
The other side... I have kayaks and can't make myself load them for a couple hours of drowning worms. I need to plan a day trip to make it worth the headache.
A kayak adds some diversity and is easily maintained. I owned a boat once. More of a money pit than anything else. It's always something. If you love to tinker and fix, go get you one, otherwise if you want to use a boat, most marinas rent them. Let them do the maintenance. That's my opinion.
Hello H3 and welcome to the forum. It looks like you answered your own question as far as getting a craft. I prefer my kayak over boating because I can get into those areas where I just looked at from a distance in the boat. As far as feeling unnatural reeling back to land it is no more unnatural than sitting in the boat throwing towards the land and reeling back to the boat. Either way tight lines.
Let me say this: A boat is a hole in the water that you throw all your money into!
That said, I own a 14 ft. Tracker Super Guide V-14 with a 25 horse Mercury outboard on it. I also own 2 float tubes and 3 pairs of waders. And I still have days that I won't use any of them. Each of these methods of fishing can be very satisfying, and productive. And if you haven't thought about it as yet, don not forget the floatation device(s) and something to make loud sounds with as there are still boaters out there who think they own the water and do not or will not look out for you.
If you learn the different methods for each type of fishing, your enjoyment will increase tremendously.
Me thinks that there are other costs u have to consider - register $$$, safety gear $$$, transportation $$$$. Thinks u might wanna give it more thought on how much ur gonna use it.
I have a nice $200 float tube, a 15’ flat bottom canoe w trolling motor, and I rent boats. If I had the space, I’d like get a 16’ Lowe Jon boats and covert it into a bass boat. You can really pimp out a Jon boat for around $2,500 including trailer.... something to consider 🤔🏄🏼♂️🎣
I own a 19ft flats/bay c.c. type boat and here in Fla it gets so hot in the summer that I have to make myself use it due to the heat, I've owned several different boats over the years from 21ft bay boat to 12ft Jon boats and I must say the 17ft Bass tracker was used the most and the only one I've really gotten my money out of. Boats aren't cheap by no means and the bigger the more everything cost. The Tracker I owned I used a lot with my wife and son from fishing, tubing, knee boarding it was a blast and fairly cheap. If you have a family and kids then a smaller boat like the Bass Tracker can bring the family together and can be used for more than just fishing and not break the bank.
Look at the type of water your fishing and where you want your fishing to go... if your fishing small ponds or small lakes you can get away with an inexpensive John boat or even float tube, if your fishing larger lakes or river systems, you need a bigger boat to move around efficiently and deal with rougher water safely. Are you just fishing cause you have nothing better to do? Are you fishing cause that's all you want to do? Do you want to fish competitively? To answer your question directly, if your serious about your fishing, you'll want a boat... you don't have to start with a ranger but if you really have the bug... well, you'll probably end up there... ha ha...
Yep! Natural progression + obsession = eventual boat!🏄🏼♂️🎣
I bought a Jon boat a month ago and only use it on weekends with my son and through the week I fish from the bank. Actually I find it a pain in the posterior considering my advanced age and physical disabilities. Even with my son’s help which I will never admit to him. I just grin and bear my pain because I don’t know how many days, weeks, months or years I have left so I just keep on eating my pain meds and make believe I am fine.
Loc: West Deptford new jersey, but the salt calls
I haven't, but it probably depends on what you are after, where your gonna fish etc...
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