Tag Archive: boat ramp

A ramp used for launching boats carried by trailer, and for taking them out.

Portable boats

Car-topped Wavewalk S4 portable skiff

Introduction

Portable boats have been around for decades, and over time, they have gained many fans, as well as opponents.
This article is an attempt to shed more light on this subject, clarify the basic things that are worth knowing, determine factors that should be given consideration when deciding whether to buy a portable boat or not, and which type, as well as offer information on the latest developments in this field.
Special attention is given to Wavewalk’s Series 4 (S4), a new type of portable boat based on the company’s patented invention. The S4 is good new for those who are looking to get a high performance car-top boat without compromising on stability, comfort and dryness.

The following playlist includes YouTube videos showing the S4 used in different applications and environments, and by different people. One of the videos shows a user uploading an S4 on top of his SUV in under thirty seconds –

 

Make sure to set the YouTube player to watching the videos on this playlist in 1080p HD Hi-Definition.
Use the > button to play the next movie, and the < button to return to the previous one.

Portable boat – Definition

A portable boat is a small boat that’s lightweight enough for a person to upload onto their vehicle’s roof rack in order to transport it this way. A portable boat must also be lightweight enough for one person to carry by hand from their vehicle to the water, and back. In other words, a portable boat is a car-top boat, and vice versa.
This is to say that portable boats do not require transportation by trailer.
But not all trailer-free boats offer the same degree of portability, and some small dinghies, Jon boats and motorized boards may be hauled onto a pickup truck bed, but still be too heavy and bulky for either car topping or easy carrying. Therefore, these small boat are not true portable boats.

Are kayaks portable boats?

Kayaks are not considered to be portable boats despite their being small and typically lightweight enough to be car topped and carried by hand. This is because kayaks don’t lend themselves to effective motorizing, and the same is true for canoes, with the exception for square-stern canoes designed to accommodate a small outboard motor, and be driven on flat water.
Kayaks with built-in electric trolling motors are not portable boats either, since their motors are extremely weak in comparison to the smallest portable outboard gas engines that power boats.
Only a vessel that is both a boat in the full sense of functionality and comfort expected from a motorboat, as well fully portable, may qualify as a portable boat.

Are motorized boards portable boats?

Motorized boards are vessels that offer neither minimal free board nor sufficient load capacity to count as boats. Ironically, some of them are too heavy to be car-topped, which is yet another reason why they may not count as portable boats.

Portability is key

Portability can save you both time and money.
In dollar terms, portability saves you the money that you would have spent on a boat trailer. It’s always good to have a few extra dollars to spend on the boat itself, or on fishing gear.
However, what’s more important is the fact that a portable boat saves you time that you can spent having fun on the water, instead of on the road, driving to or from a boat ramp, as boat ramps are the only places that allow you to launch a boat from a trailer. By the same token, a portable boat saves you waiting time at the boat ramp, waiting for other boat owners to launch their boats, or take them out before you could do it with your own boat. Owning a car-top boat guarantees that you’d never arrive to a boat ramp just to find that the facility had run out of parking space for your vehicle and your boat trailer.
Simply put, portability frees you to launch anywhere you want, and in the case of the S4, even in rocky beaches a.k.a. “Rock Gardens”, as seen in one of the videos featuring in the above playlist.

Rigid Hull

Portable boats include dinghies, Jon boats and square-stern canoes that are small and lightweight enough for car topping. Typically, such boats are made from aluminum (welded or riveted), fiberglass, or plastic resin such as Polyethylene (PE).
A rigid hull offers the advantage of being ready to go on water without spending time and energy on inflating and assembly. As soon as they are out of the water, rigid-hull portable boats (RIB) cannot be car-topped without deflating or disassembling them.
One of the drawbacks of a car-topped boat compared to a boat transported on a trailer is that with a car-top boat, you have to mount the outboard motor on the boat before you launch, and dismount it at the end of the trip, so you could transport it inside your vehicle. This said, an experienced boat owner can mount and dismount a small, namely portable outboard motor within a couple of minutes.

Folding Hull

A folding hull is made from rigid panels attached by flexible sections. Folding a boat makes it take less space, and being less bulky can be an advantage for transportation.
Upon arrival to the launching spot, a folding hull needs to be unfolded, and the boat requires assembly for its seats, transom, etc., which can take up to twenty minutes. Disassembling the boat and folding it back can take a similar time, and altogether, whatever time is gained as a result of not having to launch at a boat ramp thanks to the lack of a trailer, might be wasted on tedious assembly and disassembly work.

Inflatable Boat and Inflatable Pontoons

Inflatable dinghies are made from soft parts, and rigid inflatable boats (RIB) have rigid parts too, which require both assembly and inflation before launching, and disassembly as well as deflation and folding at the end of the trip. These extra activities can take considerable time, even for an experienced user with a good electric pump.
Generally speaking, anglers typically prefer not to fish out of inflatable boats because of the risk of a fishing hook or a knife perforating the hull.

Folding Catamaran

Some small catamarans may be transported on top of a vehicle. These boats feature closed rigid hulls namely pontoons, and their decks are made from sections that can be assembled for boating, and disassembled to allow transportation on a vehicle. Typically, these are sailing catamarans, and they are rarely used for fishing.

Stability, Comfort, and Seaworthiness problems in portable boats

The need to compact the boat so it could be car-topped leads to some portable boat designs lacking in seaworthiness, stability, and comfort.
Canoes feature either round bottomed or flat bottomed hulls. The first is extremely tippy and prone to rolling, especially for a crew of more than one, and the latter is stabler on flat water, but insufficiently stable in choppy water, and in the presence of powerboats’ wakes.
Jon boats, aluminum dinghies and micro skiffs that feature a flat bottom hull are moderately stable on flat water, especially if they are very wide, but they lack the stability required for driving and fishing in moving water.
Jon boats, dinghies and skiffs with a shallow V hull are more stable in moving water, but less stable on flat water.
Inflatable dinghies are very wide, and they are designed to allow driving in moving water, but these boats are not comfortable.

Small, compact boats are not the most comfortable, with the exception of the S4, which features a large-size saddle resembling the saddle seats found in bigger personal watercraft (PWC) sometimes called jet-skis. The S4’s saddle combined its twin-hull design delivers the highest performance in terms of balancing, namely the users’ ability to react instantly, intuitively and effortlessly to changes, as well as actively balance the boat. The S4’s stability combined with the effective balancing capabilities it offers to its users contribute to its exceptional seaworthiness.

Which car-top boat is the most portable?

A boat’s portability is affected mainly by its weight. The S4 weighs a little less than 100 lbs without a motor, and this makes it the lightest boat relatively to its load capacity of over 600 lbs. The S4 also features a fully rigid twin-hull that requires no time-consuming inflation or assembly. Therefore, it is fair to say that the S4 is the world’s most portable boat.

Which portable boat is the most stable?

The Wavewalk S4 is the world’s most stable in its category of portable boats that require neither inflation nor assembly. With its load capacity of over 600 lbs and its saddle seat, this patented boat can carry up to three adult passengers on board, and they may all stand up at the same time  –

Which portable boat is the most seaworthy?

This question is more difficult to answer, since many inflatable and rigid-inflatable dinghies are very wide and designed to go in rough water. However, for a rigid hull portable boat, the Wavewalk S4 is the most seaworthy, since it can go in the ocean in waves up to 5 ft, and its driver can drive it in waves while they stand.

What is the most comfortable portable boat?

Portable boats usually come with simple bench-like seats, or basic swivel seats. Inflatable dinghies offer the driver and sometimes the passengers to sit on its inflatable chambers, or pontoons. Such seating accommodations are not ergonomically designed, which is why they are rather uncomfortable. On top of this, such crude seats do not provide boaters with effective means to o balance themselves, and this balancing deficiency becomes a severe comfort problem in rough water, as well as on longer trips.
The Wavewalk S4 is the only portable boat that features an ergonomically designed PWC saddle-seat. These seats prevent back pain and they offer their users means for quick and efficient reaction to change, as well as easy, natural, intuitive, and highly effective balancing, including whilr going in rough water. S4 driver and passengers can face forward while they ride (straddle) the saddle with a foot in each hull, and they can also face sideways while sitting side-saddle with both feet in one hull. This works not just for small size people as well as for big and heavy guys. The above video playlist includes a movie showing an angler who weighs 330 lbs enjoying driving an S4 and fishing from it while seated side-saddle.

Which portable boat is the most versatile?

The Wavewalk S4 is hands down the most versatile portable boat, due to multiple reasons. These include the fact that the S4 works perfectly as a paddle craft both in a canoeing and kayaking mode. This excellent performance in a human powered mode is unique among motorboats, and it is important not just as an alternative for motorizing in case of emergency, such as engine problems, getting stranded at low tide, etc., but also for going in extremely shallow water (skinny water) where even small and lightweight boats draft too much. This is to say that the S4 is unbeatable as far as mobility is concerned.
The S4 also works both in a solo and tandem mode with up to three adult passengers, and it features a frontal casting deck, as skiffs do.
The S4’s seaworthiness is so good that it can serve as a fun boat for playing in waves. The S4 can also be easily towed by a bigger boat or hauled on board, and together with its generous load capacity, these attributes turn it into a most effective boat tender for yachts and big boats.

Image gallery

The following images offer a quick, condensed glimpse into various aspects of the S4, both as a car-top motorboat and a paddle craft, for leisure and fishing. For a better insight on the S4’s capabilities watch movies in the above playlist.

 

 

Recommended reading: Super Stability – What makes small boats and kayaks more stable »

 

White S4 arrived

By Jack Snapp

Texas

 

Took off from work early to get my S4 on the water the first time.
Arrived at boat launch and five minutes later was in the water. That’s at first! And without getting wet!   🙂
Easy to paddle seated or standing. Only minor issue was tracking in straight line up-river while coasting. Not an issue going down-river.
Shouldn’t be a problem with two people.
Can’t wait to motorize.
Woo Hoo!!!!!

Oh, love the storage. Can pack it at home and then straight in the water. Same when coming out of water. Not like a SOT kayak where you loading/unloading your gear to transport.
That’s a huge plus for me.

 

 

 

 

 


 

Update I

Spent 3 1/2 hours on Lake Dunlap this morning.
Beautiful day. Got lots of stares. Almost constant paddling, seated and standing.
So comfortable!
Could have gone much longer.

 


Update II

Had a blast on the water on Sunday. Just need to get used to steering behind me. S4 handled perfectly, even over the wakes from other boats and jet skis. Got a few stares and thumbs up. Plenty of power from the 6hp Tohatsu to get to my fishing spots quickly. Then, I can tilt the motor up and paddle/pole around the skinny water.


Update III

Got my S4 up to 13 mph, but it runs consistently at 11 mph at open throttle. Just me and light gear on board. Wonder if others are experiencing the same, or better. Love to jump the wakes of jet skis and other boats. But, normally not at top speed. It could easily handle a larger motor.
 

Flats boat or bass boat, or something else?

“My father is retired, and he owns a sixty thousand dollar bass boat that he takes out maybe twice a year, but he fishes out of his Wavewalk nearly every day.”
-Clint Harlan, Missouri

Different boats with many similarities

Bass boats and flats boats have a lot in common, and they also differ from each other in some details.
Depending on their size and the speed required from them, these two families of small to medium size motorboats are propelled by one or more outboard gas engines, and they are relatively wide for their overall size.
The decks of both types of fishing boats are generally flat, and they don’t feature a cabin. Both types of boats feature a special casting area in the front of their deck, where one and sometimes two anglers can sit or stand, and cast comfortably.
Both bass boats and flats boats are stable, and their hulls are designed to have a shallow draft, which is why they are generally more flat than the deeper hulls of boats designed to travel offshore, in rough seas.
All these boats are comfortable to travel in and fish from, and the more expensive ones offer a plethora of amenities that make traveling and fishing easier, more comfortable, and more enjoyable for their crew.

Another noticeable difference between flats boats and bass boats is color – Flats boats tend to come in light colors, predominantly white, and bass boats tend to have a dark hull, with dark blue being their more popular color.

Many people who own a flats boat use it inland, in freshwater, as a bass boat, but it seems that the opposite is less commonly practiced.

Flats boats are skiffs designed primarily for saltwater, and in general, their makers strive to enable them to go in more ‘skinny’ water, namely very shallow water. They are named ‘flats boats’ after the wide stretches of flat, shallow water in coastal areas in the southern regions of the United States.

How shallow can you go?

Fishing in shallow water is the raison d’être of flats boats, skiffs, etc. This is where fishers of all disciplines, from reel and fly fishing to net casting strive to get those big redfish, snook, seatrout, snapper, tarpon and many other species that live typically in those rich fisheries.

When push comes to shove, it’s the depth of the propeller that determines how shallow the water you can go in can be, and not just the number of inches that the hull drafts.

Unless a boat is outfitted with a special outboard motor called ‘mud motor’, the effective depth where you can drive it is about one foot of water, or more. This is because even a small propeller is about 8 inches in diameter, and it rotates at least an inch below the anti ventilation plate (often referred to as anti cavitation plate), which itself is required to be immersed in one to two inches of water below the hull’s lowest point (typically, its keel). And naturally, you need some good clearance between the propeller and the bottom of the body of water in which you’re navigating, or else…
Needless to say that the water you drive in has to be free of seaweed and other types of aquatic vegetation that’s likely to snag your propeller.
These are the reasons why you need an alternative mode of propulsion for the really ‘skinny’ water, and this alternative is poling –
The quintessential element that makes a boat a flats boat is the poling platform featuring at the stern, and some flats boats are dubbed ‘poling skiff’.

Poling? Come on…

Opinions differ as to how effective poling is in terms of covering any meaningful distance, because in the first place, not too many people are sufficiently fit to pole, and even an athletic, experienced and highly motivated pole pusher cannot move a skiff at a speed that’s comparable to the speed achieved in kayaks and canoes.
As for poling against a current, even such as in a slow moving river, and let alone a faster, tidal current – good luck with that.
Being flat bottomed, flats boats don’t offer very good directional stability, and their high deck structures tend to catch wind, and for these reasons, plus the overall size and weight of the vessel, poling in unfavorable wind conditions must be ruled out.

To be fair, it would be hard for one person to move a fairly large and heavy boat such as a flats boat just by using their muscles. These boats don’t lend themselves to human powered propulsion, whether it’s paddling, rowing, or poling.

It seems like the only effective human powered mode of propulsion for boats this size could be stand-up sculling, which is a traditional method that’s still popular in Asia, especially with heavier boats. But stand-up sculling is a technique that requires a skilled and experienced rower, namely someone who’s in excellent shape and rows frequently, and let’s face it, this requirement doesn’t fit the description of our typical weekend flats fisherman…

Hey, what about me?

The person who activates the push pole in a flats boat can help their fishing buddy by identifying fish from the height of their poling platform, but they are pretty much prevented from taking part in actual fishing action. Too bad for them…

Stranded

Whenever you fish in skinny water that’s affected by tides, you risk getting stranded as the tide ebbs, and this means you and your fishing buddy would have to spend many more hours together, and in the company of mosquitoes. Lots of them… In other words, skinny water capabilities are not just about fishing.

Putting in, taking out, etc.

Being full fledged boats, you can launch neither a bass boat nor a flats boat from a beach, let alone one where rocks and oyster beds are present, and you can’t launch from a dock either. You need a facility known as a boat ramp that allows you to access water that’s deep enough with the trailer on which you transport your boat. Such boat ramp has to have a parking lot too, for you and other boat owners like yourself to park your vehicles and trailers.
Driving to a boat ramp takes time, waiting for other boaters to launch and beach may take additional time, launching takes some extra time, and so does parking. And none of these activities is something to look forward to, because they’re not fun.
Taking your boat out is equally frustrating in terms of time wasted on doing other things that are not fishing.

In dollar terms

Buying, operating and maintaining a bass boat or a flats boat isn’t cheap. However, we will not discuss these well known issues because we assume that if you’re reading this article, you can afford such expenses. Whether you would want to spend this money if you had a good, cheaper alternative to owning such a boat is another question.  After all, owning a big and expensive boat offers other advantages that are not directly related to fishing.

In sum, neither bass boats nor flats boats are very practical for really shallow water and for shorter trips. 

Not an alternative, really

No sensible angler would consider a SOT or sit-in kayak (SIK) to be an alternative to a full fledged motorboat, because of the obvious shortcomings of fishing kayaks, which are that they are extremely uncomfortable, wet, and slow, and paddling or pedaling them takes too much time and energy. A kayak’s range of travel is limited, even with an electric trolling motor, and besides – why did we even bother to mention these kayaks in the first place?…

Canoes are OK for a crew of two paddlers (well, sort of), but they don’t work well for one paddler, and motorizing a canoe is problematic.

As for Jon boats, dinghies, and other smaller fishing boats, you need a trailer to transport them, and you can’t paddle them effectively.

Inflatables? Nah…

A pretty good alternative

The patented twin-hull, 60 lbs Wavewalk™ 500 can be easily outfitted with an outboard gas engine, and easily driven across long distances. It’s back pain free, dry, and it offers plenty of storage. It paddles better than any other kayak out there, including in strong wind, and one person can car-top it effortlessly in less than thirty seconds. 
You can launch a motorized W500 from any dock or beach, including rocky beaches, and you can paddle it in water that’s just a few inches deep, and even go over obstacles. The W500 is the most stable kayak out there, and anyone can paddle it standing, and fish standing in it.

But there’s an even better alternative:

The best alternative

While the W500 is unrivaled in the world of kayaks, it is limited as far as load capacity is concerned. Its 360 lbs capacity is fine for one large size fisherman, an outboard motor, and plenty of fishing gear, but that’s about it – no carrying capacity for another large size fishing buddy, and this can be a problem for many people who are used to fish in crews of two.
And this is where the perfect alternative can be introduced: The Wavewalk™ 700.
This new boat does more than effectively bridging the worlds of kayak fishing and regular fishing from boats – It offers a range of benefits that in some cases make it a better solution than bass boats and flats boats –

The ultra lightweight (80 lbs) W700 can carry on board 580 lbs of passengers, motor and gear, which is enough for two full size fishermen, their fishing gear, and a powerful outboard. The 6 hp outboard featuring in our demo movies is overkill for it.
The W700 offers all the advantages listed above for the W500, namely easy car-topping, easy launching anywhere you want, easy paddling, skinny water mobility, easy stand up fishing, comfort, storage, stand up paddling and fishing, etc., plus full tandem capabilities, for both short and long trips.
This makes the W700 both a full solo and a full tandem car-top boat and paddle craft, and if you tried to go on a fishing trip in a bass boat or a flats boat by yourself, without a fishing buddy, you’d probably agree that neither of these full-fledged boat types are optimal for one person to use on solo fishing trips. It can be done, but it’s not that much fun.

The W700 is a unique watercraft, and you’re likely to appreciate it either as a great alternative to a bass boat or a flats boat, or simply as a new type of fishing boat that redefines the market.

 

Wavewalk™ 700

 

A trailer-free fishing boat that you can paddle easily

Paddling is important for fishing, yet under-utilized

The overwhelming majority of people who don’t fish from shore fish out of a motorboat, and only a tiny fraction of anglers afloat fish out of paddle craft, be it a canoe or a kayak.
-Why is that?
This website features dozens of articles explaining the shortcomings of canoes and common fishing kayaks from every possible angle, including poor stability, poor tracking, limited range of travel and too small load capacity, dysfunctional storage, wetness and bad ergonomics. And let’s not forget the inability to go in shallow water that’s specific to another mode of human powered propulsion, namely pedal craft.

But paddling offers many advantages to anglers who fish from boats, due to various reasons –
What would you gain from fishing out of a motorboat that you can easily paddle?

Common fishing boats are too wide and heavy to allow for paddling to any meaningful distance, and this fact limits their use to deeper water than the shallow water accessible to craft that are typically propelled with paddles. In addition, the absolute reliance on the motor’s propeller inhibits movement in another type of productive fisheries characterized by the abundance of seaweed and grass.
If you could paddle your motorboat as easily as you paddle a canoe or a kayak, you’d gain a lot in fishing terms, a.k.a. fishability:
Being able to paddle your fishing boat would open new places for you to launch from and beach in. This would be no less than a strategic advantage, since it would reduce your dependence on boat ramps, and save your precious fishing time from being wasted in driving to boat ramps that are few and far between, waiting for other boaters to launch and beach there, and performing difficult and lengthy maneuvers with your own boat and trailer.
But all this discussion about launching a motorboat just anywhere you feel like is moot, of course, unless your motorboat is lightweight enough to eliminate to need for transportation by trailer.

Is paddling a motorboat even an option?

It isn’t an option when typical motorboats are concerned, since even the smallest and lightest ones are too heavy and too wide to allow for effective paddling. But the upcoming Wavewalk™ fishing boat from the 700 Series is different – It will weigh just 80 lbs, which is a fraction of the weight of a small boat, and in fact, it’s even less than the weight of most large-size SOT and sit-in kayaks out there (a.k.a. barges), some of which weigh around 200 lbs without a motor… Furthermore, the W700 will be just 31″ wide, which is not wide compared to canoes or typical fishing kayaks, some of which reach up to 41″ at their waistline, a fact that prohibits anything remotely close to effective paddling, while delivering mediocre stability.
Its patented twinhull form will make the W700 stable enough for motorizing with a powerful outboard and for stand up fishing in tandem, and yet, it will be narrow enough to allow for a good paddling experience. Without ever requiring the use of a rudder, the W700 will track better than traditional kayaks do, and better than canoes, which track even worse than kayaks.

As far as serving as a microskiff (shallow water, flats fishing boat) the W700 will outperform other small microskiff who offer just motorizing and poling as means of propulsion – Being able to paddle this new craft would greatly increase your mobility in every dimension, from launching to moving in shallow water over long distances, getting over underwater obstacles and going through thick vegetation, as well as dealing with low tides and swift currents.

The best of both worlds, and some more –

The upcoming W700 Series is not just about enjoying the best of both worlds, I.E. motorboats and paddle craft. It will allow you to benefit from the combination of the most important features of these two classes of watercraft while adding new benefits that only Wavewalk™ kayaks can deliver –
It will be the Best Of Breed in the world of kayak fishing, both as a solo and two-person fishing kayak, and it will distinguish itself as the only trailer-free fishing boat that you can paddle and car-top easily and effectively either solo or with a two person crew –
A trailer-free fishing boat that you can paddle and pole easily together with a fishing buddy or just by yourself.

Legal restrictions on motorizing

And let’s not forget that some of the most productive fisheries in your state may be Non Motor Zones (NMZ), namely restricted to non-motorized fishing – Yet another reason to appreciate a boat that you can easily car-top and paddle by yourself, and together with a fishing buddy.

 

More information on the upcoming Wavewalk™ 700 series »

A better two-person fishing boat

What’s a good two-person fishing boat?

A good two-person fishing boat is one that allows for two large size fishermen to fish from it in full comfort, for long hours. According to this basic definition, most boats out there are suitable as two-person fishing boats, except sit-in and sit-on-top (SOT) tandem fishing kayaks, which are neither comfortable nor stable enough for average people to fish from. So this preliminary definition is too inclusive, and we need to refine it by asking the following question –

What’s a better two-person fishing boat?

This is where the actual discussion begins –

1. More than two anglers on board.

One requirement that comes to mind is the ability to accommodate a crew of more than two full-size anglers, and in fact, most motorboats out there fulfill this requirement, although on a typical trip they don’t take more than two anglers on a board. In fact, most anglers fish either alone or with one fishing buddy on board, which is to say that being able to take a third and a fourth passenger is a feature that may be nice to have, but it’s not essential for a two person fishing boat. In other words, size may matter in this case, but only to marginal extent.

2. Less than two anglers on board – Very important!

Typically, recreational fishermen fish by themselves or in pairs. This implies that a good two-person fishing boat should also be practical and even easy to use for one angler who wishes to use it alone, without a fishing buddy – but most fishing boats aren’t.  This failure to accommodate one angler is the result of the boat’s large size, and consequently, the need to transport it with a trailer, launch it from a trailer, and take it out onto a trailer… And while this may sometime be possible for one experienced and strong fisherman to perform, it’s not given to everyone. This is to say that a really good two-person fishing boat must also be a good one-person fishing boat – by definition.

3. Mobility is key

A typical two-person fishing boat is fairly large, and requires transportation on a trailer, which limits the number of launching and beaching spots for its users, makes them lose precious time at boat ramps and on the way to them, and limits the areas where they can go and fish. Such boats may be comfortable to fish from, but this comfort comes at a price that you wouldn’t necessarily want to pay, if you were offered a better alternative. And indeed, some two-person fishing boats such as lightweight dinghies and Jon boats can be car topped by two strong men, or transported in a pickup truck bed, and they can be launched and beached regardless of boat ramps.  The problem with this class of small boats is that you can’t paddle them effectively, and you still need a fishing partner to handle them on land, both when carrying them from and to your vehicle, and for car-topping and unloading them.

4. The shallow water challenge

Unless you’re a blue-water fisherman, sooner or later you’d want to fish in shallow water, because these waters offer some of the best fisheries. But shallow waters are not just shallow, they’re often infested with vegetation and underwater obstacles, and we use the word ‘infested’ because although vegetation and underwater structures make great habitats for fish, they’re not that great for boating, to say the least, and they can cause you serious trouble with your motor’s propeller. This means that even a boat with a very shallow draft, such as some microskiff have, may not perform well in shallow water due to your inability to propel it effectively, meaning that it’s not comfortable to paddle, and it requires too much effort to push-pole.
Shallow water as a type of fishery that demands particular things from a boat, one of which is the ability to propel it manually (seriously, forget about pedal drives 😀 ) by using either double blade (kayak) or single blade (canoe) paddles. If you’re serious about shallow water, think paddling too, or get either a mud motor or an air-jet motor for your boat.

5. Launching and beaching issues

Good launching and beaching spots are not always available, and you may need to launch your boat and beach it in less than perfect conditions such as we described in the previous ‘Shallow Water’ section of this article, or in places called ‘Rock Gardens’. In both cases, the ability to propel your boat with an alternative, human-powered means is critical. By this we mean that a really good two-person fishing boat is one that offers its crew, be it two anglers or a single one, to paddle and push-pole easily and effectively, over long distances and in problematic water and weather conditions.

6. No-Motor Zones (NMZ)

These fisheries where no motor boats are allowed grow in number every year, and some of them are just too good to be left for others to fish in. NMZ are yet another reason why versatility in propulsion is important when you think about your next fishing boat.

7. Canoe?

No. A canoe is unlikely to fit your requirements for a good two-person fishing boat for a number of reasons, which are:
Although some canoes are wide, they’re not particularly stable, especially when powered by an outboard motor.
For the same reason (stability issues), canoes aren’t ideal for fishing standing, especially for average and above-average size fishermen, as well as elderly ones, and we all know that without the ability to stand up and fish, no boat can be labeled a good fishing boat.
Typically, canoes don’t offer much as far as comfort goes, and unless you’re super fit, that’s a problem when long fishing trips are concerned.
If you try to paddle a canoe by yourself on a windy day, chances are that you won’t try again… This is because canoes track poorly under wind, and they’re too hard for most solo paddlers to handle under such conditions.

But does such a two-person fishing boat even exist?

This article seems to raise the bar a little too high in realistic terms, doesn’t it? It describes a craft that’s lightweight enough for one guy to car top, yet can take two large-size fishermen in full comfort on a long fishing trip, and be motorized with a powerful outboard motor.  The same boat is required to be very stable, naturally, and still be narrow enough for comfortable paddling… These contradicting requirements exclude even the Wavewalk™ 500, since with its 360 lbs recommended load capacity this unique watercraft cannot accommodate more than one large-size fishermen, but they don’t exclude to new Wavewalk™ 700 , which has a 580 lbs load capacity, and was designed to do just that, without giving up the solo abilities in launching, paddling, standing, poling, fishing, motorizing, beaching, and car-topping.