How to Decide on a Fishing Boat

Jess KContributor IIIJanuary 23, 2011

Many fishermen who are looking into the advantages of owning their own fishing boat have many questions as to what kind of boat may be the right kind for them. At first, the idea of fishing in a small boat offshore may seem like suicide. However, it is important that we take a closer look at what exactly a small boat really is and what it is not.


Small Fishing Boats

There is not necessarily an agreed upon definition when it comes to how a small boat is defined. Some may consider a small boat anything smaller than 25 feet and some anglers call anything under 20 small. To the United States Coast Guard, a small boat is actually anything under 100 feet. While everyone may have a different perspective, for the sake of this article, we will consider a small boat any vessel used for fishing inshore.

Most of these boats are designed with a very slight dead rise which is how the hull angles to the water. The sides of the boat are often somewhat short as to make hauling in fish somewhat easier. These boats are intended for fishing in a bay and are often the first sort of boat that anglers think of when thinking about an inshore fishing boat. Still, while this kind of boat is made for fishing in a bay, it is not uncommon to see one over 25 miles into the ocean, powered only by one small engine.


Offshore Boats

An offshore boat is one that is made to withstand larger waves and deeper waters. These boats can be found as small as 20 feet and on up from there. They have a much larger dead rise of around 20 degrees which allows them to charge through waves instead of having to travel over the top of it. Since these boats need to navigate more significant waves, they bow will also need to be rather deep and large.

True offshore fishing boats will be powers by larger engines. The larger of the offshore boats will almost always rely on two engines since breaking down in large ocean in a small boat is not one of most people’s favorite fishing games.

When it comes down to it, if you are looking to fish inshore, all you will need is an inshore boat. Taking this boat too far out to sea is a big mistake. One of the only deep sea fishing tips you should always adhere to is if it is offshore fishing that you are interested in, you really must have a boat that is designed to handle the rougher conditions of the sea.