LP Fishing Boat suggestions/ideas? seeking input...

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Having followed Preston's recent thread on braid fishing line, I realized there is a real brain trust on here that I had not taken advantage of regarding my latest obsession, acquiring a fishing boat specifically for Lake Powell service. We have a 19' tin Bassboat that we love and don't intend to get rid of. But after spending more than 20 days on the water at Powell last year, we realize their is a lot of room for improvements.

We can not justify new, so we are shopping for a used aluminum deep-V boat? We are leaning toward a pre-owned Lund, but are seeing many brands that are appealing.

I was thinking 18-20' in length with a kicker, and good fuel economy.

I have found an older Lund Tyee 1750 pretty reasonable priced in great condition, but not sure if that is enough boat, size wise?

Any way, most of the time it is just my wife and I, but sometimes need room for 3-4 family members to join, so capacity for 5-6 is a goal.

So I would welcome Word-lings suggestions and comments on what you do or don't like about your fishing boat...what you would look for if upgrading...and what size and configuration you feel is best.

I know we all have different opinions and preferences, but I would really be interested in your thoughts and suggestions regarding a Lake Powell Fishing Boat???

What say ye, Word-ling?
Lund, crestliner, alumacraft all make quality boats. I have a 17 foot crest liner, it is great fishing/camping boat for lake Powell, but if I was to use it mostly only for LP, I would get something a bit bigger. Especially if you plan on more than 3 anglers. Aluminum boats are durable, light towing and economical, but fiberglass will ride better for a given length, so I would not rule out fiberglass fish/ski boats....
I would say BIGGER IS ALWAYS BETTER, unless you are the one trying to get it in and out of the garage bye your self or are trying to launch off the shoreline like up at Hite, I would definitely say that a deep v would be a benefit as would a kicker for trolling and for a backup. I just made a major investment in my retirement boat and find that the hook up in and out of the garage may become a challenge as I get older , being it's a 21 ft deep v glass boat but the ride on the rough water compared to the 17.5 ft modified v is definitely a major improvement not to mention the fuel capacity ( 46 gal. vs 20 gal ) when running such a large body of water. I am considering a kicker for my boat as well even though it has a electric trolling motor simply because of the distance from the dock and the remoteness you can encounter while on Powell. My first boat on Powell was a 16.5 ft skeeter and we launched at Wahweap and went to Hite and back, broke down 5 miles from camp right at sunset and was lucky enough to repair the problem and get back to camp (kicker would have been nice that day )and with only a 20 gal tank we were very limited between fuel docks and the ride in rough water was a white knuckle experience. The next boat a 17.5 ft modified v Stratos was a huge improvement in the ride on rough water but still only had a 20 gal tank which was still very limiting to where I could get to with out hauling gas cans to get back to the fuel docks. Which is why I invested in the new boat, now I have roughly 120+ mile fuel range, a ride in rough water that is unbelievable compared to the previous boats (tour boats no problem :p) .I would say weigh your pros and cons, what's important to you and take the time to find what will best meet you're needs.
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Thanks Dorado and Meatwagon, I appreciate your thoughts. The moving it in and out of my shop had also occurred to me, I do it manually most of the time... I had knee surgery recently so how much boat I can manhandle has become more of a concern. And like you, my interest in a kicker is more for a back up than for trolling. I have a nice electric trolling motor, but if your are 30-40 miles from camp on a late fall weekday, I always have a worry about my motor having issues.
Thanks all, please keep it coming,
I have an 1989 18' Lund deep v. Has been a great boat to fish out of and always feels safe when we have the grandson along. My friend has a 21' Lund Baron that we have had at Powell. It was great for trolling but was very difficult to hold in the wind if you like jig fishing. I have rebuilt the interior of my boat a couple of times so if you find an older one it is pretty easy to replace flooring or other parts if needed. Always fun to get another boat.
Go big! Ever been caught in a monsoon up there? Go big! We generally have 7 plus a big dog, our small cruiser is a little cramped, but it has everything. We do lots of fishing out of kayaks. Some day I'll have a dedicated fishing boat. Last summer we did just over 30 days total at Powell and netted lots of fish (400+).
Seems to me maintenance is probably the most important thing, if the boat has been well cared for, brand is less important.

Thanks to y'all who have made so many trips successful and safe! This is my first post, but I have been stalking you for years!
Go big! Ever been caught in a monsoon up there? Go big! We generally have 7 plus a big dog, our small cruiser is a little cramped, but it has everything. We do lots of fishing out of kayaks. Some day I'll have a dedicated fishing boat. Last summer we did just over 30 days total at Powell and netted lots of fish (400+).
Seems to me maintenance is probably the most important thing, if the boat has been well cared for, brand is less important.

Thanks to y'all who have made so many trips successful and safe! This is my first post, but I have been stalking you for years!

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and finally joining in the conversation after a long time of viewing the info.
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I will agree with what seems to be the consensus here. My suggestion would be for the biggest, most powerful boat that you can comfortably tow with your current tow vehicle, that will fit into your storage space, and that your budget will allow.

Personally, I don't think there is much difference in launching/loading a 16' boat vs a 23' boat. Moving it around your garage/storage area is a different story, but there are devices that can make that easier as well. If it is tight quarters you could go with a front hitch or something like this https://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Ja...DC6qwrWZwf83XZ-t_9OWxA5kGVNDIemhoCP8EQAvD_BwE. There are power versions as well.

My fishing boat is a 16' Lund with a 60 HP 4-stroke Merc. I've never felt unsafe with it, and it is efficient enough to easily run from Bullfrog to Hite, and fish all day (actually that is less than half a tank of fuel). I bought the boat because I got a great deal on it, and it fit in my garage. Downside is that it is a long (and loud) trip running up north at 30 MPH. One trip home I fought the wind most of the way, and was only able to comfortably go about 10 MPH with the bow up to the wind.

I think my ideal fishing boat would be a 21' or 23' with a 300 + HP engine. Due to the ride and speed, I would prefer fiberglass, but there is nothing wrong with aluminum as well. I think Ranger/Crestliner/Lund are similar quality. I would also make sure that I get a good electric motor with spot lock or the equivalent, as well as a good sonar with side and down scan. A kicker is nice for peace of mine.

If you are going used, when thinking of pricing, I would try to hold some $$$ back with the intention of upgrading your electronics.
We are entering our fourth year with our new boat, 1750 Crestliner Fish Hawk with a 115 Mercury four stroke. I'd love fishing off drift wood if that's all I had but I seriously love everything about the boat, the only thing I would like differently at rare times is a 150 so I wouldn't have to worry as much about weight when fully loaded with gear and people heading out to boat camp. I love the size of our boat, and like Ryan said I've never felt unsafe in it, we can also maneuver in and out of tighter coves, over and between boulders but that's how we like to fish, a bigger deeper draft boat would hinder that a bit. We fish a lot of people out of our boat, especially for how we fish, I've never seen anyone else like it ha, so we'd be crammed even on a 20+ footer but that's how we like it.

There are countless brands and countless features you might be particular too, the biggest factor for us was our fishing style. We like our deep v with the wrap around windshield (and a few other options) because it provides the most variety. We can troll out of it, cast out of it, load a ton of camping gear in it, and take on some pretty crazy weather. Many options, brands, and preferences out there but here is a list of no brainers I think every fishing boat on Powell should have and what we've loved since getting our new boat.

-Outboard Motor (and if you can help it budget wise don't go anything below the max allowed), at some point you're going to be working on your motor while at Powell, an in-board is much harder to deal with on the water plus its a massive waste of deck space on a fishing boat.
-Live-well, I cant believe we went so long without one, countless fish were lost because stringers were forgotten to be pulled in ha.
-Vinyl Flooring, easy to clean and very tough.
-Rod Locker, maybe lower on a priority list but certainly one of if not my favorite feature we now have.
-Trolling motor, at least 24 volt, and at least 80lb thrust. I'd also certainly recommend a model with a form of spot lock on it.
-Cooler space, a cooler on your boat at Powell is a must, it might be lower on the priority list but think about where you could have a dedicated spot for one while maintaining maximum fishing space.
-25+ tank, Powell is huge, even in small fragments (Hite to Ticaboo say). This one is thing that is usually out of your control based on the size of the boat and motor but just something to keep in mind.
-Maximum deck space. This one is probably more just for us and might be lower on the list, but a selling factor for us was the conversion bench seat that provided a lot of extra deck space in the back of the boat. Again this suggestion is based on your fishing style, some guys certainly value cockpit space a lot more than deck space.

Good luck, boat shopping is fun but can be overwhelming and exhausting.

Oh and on the aluminum side of things I've loved it, lighter, easier to tow, you can also beach it pretty much anywhere. Ride isn't an issue at all, maybe that's an old guy thing. ;)

I was at the same crossroads last spring. I had an 18' Lund Alaskan with a 40 hp 2 stroke. I liked the boat but it didn't have enough horsepower to make me feel safe in the high wind and rough seas. After weighing all my options based on my budget, I went with a 18.5' Lund pro-v with a 90 hp Honda. I stayed with the tiller driven model because I like the open platform for fishing but at times I long for a windshield. I love this boat and with a 40 gallon tank and the honda 4 stroke i can fish all week on a tank of fuel. I put a 9.9 kicker on it and now I feel safe to make the run to Good Hope when necessary. If you want to fish with 6 people in the boat I'd opt for something over 20' with the widest beam you can find. Happy boat shopping! I'll add that the best place to find used boats is the Minneapolis craiglist. Tin boat paradise up there
I look at it more in line with what you would be doing most --- if 90% of your time is spent fishing for bass- than a ranger bass boat in the 20 ft range would be my choice -- if you chase stripers, do some small and large mouth fishing..... I would look at something like the crestliner, or lund pro v --- trolling most the time, I would look for something a little deeper like the lund tyee ( all in the 20+ foot range) --- If I was going to use it for fishing, hauling camping gear , long runs.... I would look at a center console boat --- more interested in comfort than speed, and still doing some fishing --- 3 pontoon, pontoon boat. --- If money not a huge part of it --- 20 ft + boat with a 200min HP and 8 hp kicker--- lots of good used ones out there just watch the motor -- there are things to stay away from -- ( evinrude ficht,-- 1st 2 years of Optimax, Yamaha HPDI that have sat for many years.....) get a survey done, and have marine mechanic go over the engine
You've received some pretty good advice here. Since 2004 I've been fishing Lake Powell with a 17-3 Ranger Cherokee aluminum bass boat with a 115 Merc 4-stroke. Although it's a bass boat it has a fairly deep V hull much like the Crestliner 1750 mentioned above. I have had no issues running the lake with this rig and it's worked great for me, however I've had a lot of experience in running smaller boats in big water. Just because this type rig works for me, it may not be great for you. The deep V multi species aluminum boats made by Lund, Lowe, Crestliner, Ranger, etc., work great for Lake Powell fishing. however they are not the best for pleasure boating as aluminum hulls, no matter how good, ride rougher than a good fiberglass hull. Fiberglass hulls ride better and will give better overall performance if enough horses are hung on the transom. They are also more easily damaged on rocks and require a lot more maintenance than an aluminum rig.

Quite a few fishermen fish Powell with high performance fiberglass boats. These rigs work fine, but I would rather have a bit deeper hull than most of them have. They are also very expensive, although the bigger aluminum boats aren't cheap, either. A lot of folks like center console fiberglass boats like Boston Whalers, and they work very well. I would say that deep V boats in the 16-5 to 17-0 range are the bare minimum for this lake, and if you can afford AND HANDLE a bigger one that's even better. I also agree that you should get an engine as close the maximum allowed for the boat you're considering as possible. And I recommend you get a 4-stroke engine. The only exception to that would be on a high performance bass boat, but I'm seeing more and more of those with 4-stroke engines as well.

One thing you should not overlook is the trailer quality. A lot of boats come with substandard trailers. I've known people who have broken down because their trailer was inadequate. I've seen a lot of folks in chest deep water at the launch ramps trying to get their boats straight on the trailer. Quality trailers will be heavily reinforced and have 4 bunks instead of 2 which makes loading the boat much easier. For my money Ranger boats come on the best trailers in the industry. They come with sealed hubs which is a blessing as well. Water can get into unsealed hubs quite easily, even hubs with bearing buddies. Sealed hubs are much better.

There are a lot of opinions out there concerning boats and a lot of different boats to choose from. Carefully consider what you need before you buy. Hope this helps.

Ed Gerdemann
could not agree more with the Minneapolis craigslist -- I purchased my current Ranger off a ad from there. If you are looking for a bass / tin boat Minneapolis --- looking for a pontoon --- dallas ----- looking for a center console -- south east
Wow! Great information, thank you all, very much!!
I am impressed and find the suggestions very helpful.
When I say 6 people, which would be the most we would have and that being occasionally, that is based on 4 adults and two grand children.
The older Lund Tyee I have looked only has an 84" beam, apparently standard at that time. I'm curious, the newer deep-V are generally 92" or even 96" beam, how much of a difference do you think this spec makes?
Preston, in watching your amazing videos, you have a lots of anglers on deck (including the deck-master, Nixon!:)) but you have this pattern you use, constantly people moving up while others move back...pretty amazing.
Like you, I think, my wife and I like to get back in the coves and pockets. We are pitchers and flippers as much as casters, and starting to learn more about trolling. We are pretty comfortable on our bass boat, but not much freeboard for any rough water and not much room to accommodate taking anyone with us cruising.

If we don't spend too much on another boat, we plan to put up a metal building this summer capable of sheltering the truck camper mounted on the F-250 and two boats...lol, at least that is another "dream", we will see!

Again, thank you all for this information, and I'm excited to hear more!!

All the Best! BarzArz
Wider beam make a HUGE difference. Not only in the feel of the boats interior, but also the way it rides in rough water.

I have seen center consoles like a Whaler mentioned a couple times. If you want to fish early and late season, I would highly suggest getting something with a full windshield so you can both hide from wind/rain/spray, as well as be warmer in the early/late months.

If you are comfortable sharing a target budget, we could give you some links on possible purchases.

These would be awesome!



sounds like the tyee might fit you well ---
now it is what you can afford --
new 20 footer with 200+ hp = $70,000
15 / 16 same boat = $50,000 to $60,000
2010 ish same boat 30 to 40k
2005 ish same boat 25k
most before 2000 have motors I would start staying away from --- they can be ok, but technology was missing, and time is a factor regardless of how they were used --- used a lot, they are worn out --- used very little, and you are asking for problems --

another thing you can look for -- ( this is what I got ) --- older boat newer motor --- the boat I purchased was 20 years old, and had been used a lot ( ranger fish / ski) -- Prior owner ran the original motor until it died -- then they purchased a new motor, used it for a few years and sold the boat to me -- so I have a 1996 Ranger fish and ski with a 2010 Yamaha VMAX 225 -- new motor has about 250hr, and runs like new -- Costs LOTS less than a 2010 complete boat would have cost, but has all major components that you would have wanted in 2010 --
As far as the Larson, they are more of a lower line boat. I haven't been in one in years, but I know someone who buys and sells boats, and his advice has been to stay away from them.
my list -- For bass boats
1. Ranger ( because it is fiberglass)
2. Lund
3. Creastliner
way down list is everything else
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