I went on another duck hunt. The mud flats are punishing at times. The tide went from a 14 to a 4 in six hours. That meant that I had to move and reset my decoys every 15 min. or so. Eventually toward the bottom of the tide it takes longer to reset than the water floats the decoys to hunt. That is usually when I give up and let it come back in. Today however it would not have done so in the light, so I had to paddle out at the low. It was a drag getting the boat out to water deep enough to float. But that is what I love about the W700. Stable for the weather and light enough to drag on the mud. Only got a couple of birds but it is always good to get out.
I have been hunting hard and had another great hunt in the W700. I haven’t found the time to get the motorized S4 ready. I need probably another 4-5 hours of work on it but have been struggling to find it.
I hunt mud flats. They are not like your typical muddy beach. These flats are the result of silt and mud that is deposited at the mouth of a river meeting Puget Sound. These kind of mud flats are incredibly rich in sea life and have huge shrimp and clam beds. The result is a mud that can be firm one minute and the next you are up to your knees. Much deeper than that and you are stuck. In addition, the tide moves in and out at a very good pace most days. Sometimes it will move up to 14 feet in 6 hours. That means you have to move, a lot. Motorized boats are able to hunt the edges of these flats but really can’t take advantage of the flats themselves. They can get stranded if they don’t move their boat fast enough. If you go high and dry in a boat over 100lbs. you will not get it out until the tide comes back in. I met a fellow at the boat ramp who was admiring the W700 and said he spent the night last year out on the flats because the tide did not come back in far enough for him to get his boat out.
This is where the W700 shines. It drafts shallow, cuts the waves when the weather turns nautical, and it is light! I can easily drag it across even the soft mud and not get myself stuck. It is the perfect tool for where I hunt. Plus there is no trailer to mess with! On this hunt you can get a feel for the mud and how it is the right tool for the job.
Went hunting yesterday and it was the first time I was able to get my retriever out. Mixed results, she actually started getting a bit shy of the gun, which will take a lot of work to fix. Definitely fixable but a bit more work before she is in the next video.
It was just Torri and I so I used the W700. It is a trusty platform for getting to the duck hunting spot and my go to boat. Others with motors and heavier boats dare not tread where we hunt (in truth they would sink trying to pull the boat across the mud the 700 is heavy enough!). But it was a bright sunny day and the water was like glass. I even had a cup of coffee while the current took me back to the ramp.
Here is a link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dasd8UVHWo
Duck hunting is coming to a close and I only have 2 or 3 trips left. We are hoping for a great hunt this Friday and one more hunting video! But one of the questions I often get is “How much storage space is there in a Wavewalk?” People see the saddle and think that there would not be enough room for your decoys and all the gear that usually accompanies the sport of duck hunting. So I thought I would make this video to show people how we pack our W700 for a duck hunt. On our typical hunts we put all the gear and deeks and one hunter in a W700 and other hunters paddle their own W500s. We usually run 3 dozen decoys. Rather than keep the decoys in their bag and just throw them on top (which is very doable), we prefer to put them inside the hulls where they act as ballast and actually make the boat more stable vs. on top where they exert a stability cost. You have to take them out of the bag when you get to your spot anyway. 3 dozen deeks is all we need/want for where we hunt. A person could get more in if they needed to. Can’t wait to see how the S4 hunts.