Delaware River Club
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    inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    I may be in the market for something to float in later this spring. Something big enough for two or three people. Not sure that I want to shell out $6K for a used Hyde or Clackacraft. Also would have my doubts about towing it with my rig, which is basically an underpowered wagon. (It's a stick-shift but that won't help me drag a heavy drift boat up a steep gravel ramp.)

    So I've been thinking about a high-quality inflatable with a fishing frame. Not a two-man pontoon - something I can take my kids and wife in for the odd river trip in the summer. Fishing rafts are huge out west where Class III-IV rapids are more common. But other than the lack of whitewater, why do I see so few of them on the D? Any particular reason?

    Also: is there anybody on this site willing to cast a vote for a wide-beamed canoe? My guess is no, but I had so much fun in them back in my spin-fishing days I would love to hear somebody defend them for fly-fishing.

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    I have a couple of buddies that come up each spring from NC and they bring a large inflatable for 3 anglers. Not sure of the model, but one is a guide down there and that is their boat of choice. They do just fine, so I don't know why the fiberglass boat rules on that water. I'm guessing more tradition than functionality. As you mentioned, they're a lot lighter and you won't be in any serious white water.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    This is right up your alley..



    Its a two man Hyde, its a little cramped for two people to comfortably fish at the same time. But it works out good for me.

    I tow it with a 98 Audi A4 (1.8t). My car doesnt even break a sweat..

    "Life's hard. It's even harder when you're stupid."
    -John Wayne

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    flyI4 is offline Fishizzle, I use worms but I'm looking to upgrade!
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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    The canoe is tough...I have one and use it on smaller/medium sized streams that don't have boat ramps to get around, but its strictly a get out and wade type of deal. Fishing from the canoe is a pain in the ass. The better rafts are nice, but they aren't that much cheaper than a drift boat, and they will break your back in the wind as they don't cut through the water as well and picking up some momentum on the flatter sections is tough on a calm day let alone a windy one. You can also get a drift boat for less than 6k if you keep your eyes peeled, and look around locally rather than online. You could probably get a drift boat for 4k, maybe 4500 and no shipping.


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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    I dont know why you dont see as many in the east as you do west. But, a good cataraft will weigh close to a drift boat. It will still require a trailer because you will not be breaking them down and setting them up as ofter as you think you will, and it will take time to inflate. If storage is an issue and you have no place to put a boat then inflatable is the way to go. Also I second what fly 14 said about going through flatter sections. It will seem like molasses flowing uphil in January.

    To look good is to fish good

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    Guys on the SR tow their boats with Subaru wagons. A drift boat with a trailer doesn't weight much at all. less than 500lbs.

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    Quote Originally Posted by mob201 View Post
    Also: is there anybody on this site willing to cast a vote for a wide-beamed canoe? My guess is no, but I had so much fun in them back in my spin-fishing days I would love to hear somebody defend them for fly-fishing.
    A 17' square stern Grumman sportsboat or canoe is a great way to go and has many uses, it is a little too manly for most of the bitches who post on this site.

    Hell no and it aint over now.......

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Trouser Trout View Post
    A 17' square stern Grumman sportsboat or canoe is a great way to go and has many uses, it is a little too manly for most of the bitches who post on this site.
    I have one in my yard...does anyone have an engine that will strap on the back of it?

    "I'm not out on the river to win." -Kieth Rutherford

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    Quote Originally Posted by lightenup View Post
    I have one in my yard...does anyone have an engine that will strap on the back of it?
    What size? Do u ever use it? wanna sell it?

    Hell no and it aint over now.......

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    Quote Originally Posted by CTobias View Post
    Guys on the SR tow their boats with Subaru wagons. A drift boat with a trailer doesn't weight much at all. less than 500lbs.

    Even the beetle's POS could tow that set up.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: inflatable vs. hard-shell vs. ??

    My Hyde low pro only weighs 300lbs less the Yeti cooler full of ice and beer of course .. Check around local like JC stated and you should with a bit of research find a reasonably priced used boat. You'll be glad you did !


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    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty Spinner View Post
    Even the beetle's POS could tow that set up.
    This is what a real tow rig looks like.







    Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
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