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mnfishingal

float pontoons for mn fishing

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Hi! I am wondering if anyone can give me any advice regarding the float pontoons that are available. The kind that you can take along in the trunk of your car such as the TU or Creek Company models that allow you to either row with paddles or attach a small trolling motor. I am looking for something small and easy to pack-up and use on some of the smaller lakes. Some models come with a flip down wheel to allow you to set-up from your vehicle and then take your pontoon filled with gear down to the lake or river. Any thoughts on durability and stabilty, as well as, ease of use. I had posted this question in the equipment section and it was felt I would get a better response here. Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

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Are you planning on Fly fishing? Spin fishing? or both? Would you also consider a solo canoe or a kayak?

I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to be much help, but I expect some others here may be. I don't think I'll be much help because I've kind of struggled with the same idea / question.

My thoughts brought me around to the idea of an Old Town "Pack" canoe, which is a solo model that weighs 32lbs.

I don't really like the belly boats beacuse ou sit so low to the water and they don't move very fast. I think I would feel the same way about a Kayak, but I haven't tried one.

The canoe allows you to sit up a little, and has space for some more gear. It also allows you to cover some water quickly if you want.

I haven't tried the pontoon style boats yet, but I have friends that have offered to let me try them. We'll see - for now, I've continued to gravitate back to a full sized canoe just because I have one and I'm used to it.

I'll be curiuos to see what others have to say.

~T

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I will be spinfishing for now, although learning how to flyfish is on my "things to do list." I am afraid I may be a bit too uncoordinated and have visions of wrapping myself up in the flyline, with the little fly hooked in a place that would earn and entry into the ER staff's "unbelieveable, but true (and funny log)" smile.gif

In all seriousness, I have checked into a number of different options. I love to canoe, but for various reasons, it is not my first option. I have checked out the hobie sport fish and adventure fish kayaks, which are essentially a peddling kayak with little fins under it and a rudder, with the option of paddling if you wish. They are light weight (48 to 58#) depending on the model, but even though they are relatively small (9'-12'), they appear to be a little awkward to handle, or at least would be for someone of smaller stature. They are cool as they have built in rod holders, can be decked out with fishfinders, have a couple of covered compartments that could be used for fish or bait or extra gear, appear pretty stable, etc. They are costly at I think around $1500 for the smaller model. I found info on them online, and local sporting goods stores in Fargo carry the hobie peddle boats, just not the fish sport models, which can be ordered or found instock at some Mpls stores.

I am still looking for more information on the float pontoons, especially from others who have one or have used one. Thanks, Stiff, for the info you shared.

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Quote:

....learning how to flyfish is on my "things to do list" I am afraid I may be a bit too uncoordinated and have visions of wrapping myself up in the flyline, with the little fly hooked in a place that would earn and entry into the ER staff's "unbelieveable, but true (and funny log)" ....


Not to change the subject or anything.... but fly casting is really a lot easier than it looks. Don't be intimidated when you decide you want to learn. You know that in the end you will be able to do it - it's just a matter of how you will learn.... But that will be a different thread left for a different day.

~T

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I tried a float tube for a while and didn't like it because it got blown around with even the slightest breeze, so I gave it away. Before buying one of these pontoons, keep searching to find out how they handle in wind.

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keep searching to find out how they handle in wind.


the benefit of a pontoon is that you can utilize an anchor system. Also, besides oars, you can use fins for control, and keeping on course when you are fishing. the drawback of the kayak, I found, is that it can be difficult to maneuver the craft when the wind is turning it, when you are trying to fish, it is a pain to keep stowing/unstowing the oar just for minor adjustments. That's the one advantage of that new peddle type system on the Hobies; you are able to adjust the kayak with your feet while your hands are fishing.

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MNfishgal; I've had a Hobie "float cat" for about 5 years now. It's the only pontoon ( I think) with solid pontoons as opposed to inflatable. Quality outfit, about 750 bucks. The oar system is nice and solid, it's got a little motor mount (not too useful) and a little rack on the back. I use it on lake superior and trout lakes up north. Weighs about 35 lbs., less than most inflatables, very stable. Carries easily. overall, i've been very happy with it.

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I love my raft--Outcast pac 1200.

[image]http://www.outcastboats.com/outcastboats/pro.shtml[/image]

It isn't cheap, but can comfortably carry two. I have used it in wide variety of situations. Upper MIss, St. Croix, Rum, Littlefork rivers; various lakes, large and small (I use it on Minnetonka, and have done very well from it before the ice is fully off the lake--first to the fish!) and in lots of big rivers back east.I've run it in class iv rapids a few times, class III maybe a hundred (though they're class III's I'm very familiar with.) I've camped with another person from it, carrying all I needed; I've cartopped it, disassembled it and put it in a trunk; now I carry it on a little cheap trailer. It's very easy to handle. I can row it solo faster than a canoe with two, and probably for longer (I'll get an argument, I know, but rowing's much more efficient especially with 8-foot carlyles with blades bigger than any paddle). Its two tubes give it good tracking in current or wind, though it will blow around a lot (but not as badly as a canoe with one person aboard.) I stand on the drop-floors to flycast (front or back) with the help of the leaning post. I love to use it in small lakes, where I'll often ride it in on a set of light portage wheels when the lake doesn't have a public access. I love lakes with no public access but a bike path, a power-line easement, or a friendly landowner. With a 52-lb thrust Minn Kota it will get nearly 8 kts. (measured with my GPS) and also super maneuverable for trolling. Downsides: open floor, so dropped stuff keeps going. Odd shapes fore and aft so rigging some running lights has not so far been easy; no simple way to hang temps on there. My buddies back east--all raft guides for years--all have one of these of various shapes and sizes, from the little solo pontoons to big ones like mine.

Did I mention that I love my raft?

Ice

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Thanks for all of the helpful suggestions and for sharing your experiences. I am anxious to get out fishing this spring!

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