March 20, 2018

Your Bay Boat is a Sight Fishing Machine (this is why)

2  comments

Super shallow boats are not needed to sight fish redfish! This obvious fact is how I know.

Your Boat is Not Too Big

Conventional knowledge dictates you need a shallow-running boat to stalk bronze-backs in brackish ponds.

After all, redfish are typically found in that shallower water, where they patrol shorelines and aquatic grasses to ambush prey.

Surely, pursuing them in a heavy boat could spell disaster once the tide drops!

But is this really the case?

I don't believe so, and to prove it I'll reveal what veteran redfish tournament anglers run.

What the Pro's Use

You can see what the pros are running by looking at their bios on the Elite Redfish Series website.

  • Erik Rue - Triton 240 LTS
  • Lee Daughdrill - 24" Haynie HO
  • Chad Billiot - Blazer 2420 GTS

These aren't small boats!

The Triton alone drafts 13", the Haynie and GTS twelve inches.

Yes, some of the tournament anglers listed do use shallower craft, but that doesn't undermine the fact that the folks who fish for a living, whether it be tournaments or guiding, are using heavier bay boats.

Still don't believe me? Watch this video of this bay boat doing just fine in a duck pond (note the blind).

Why do they use these bigger boats?

Because they need to get across larger bodies of water.

A tournament held out of Biloxi, Mississippi will have competitors crossing the Mississippi Sound, even if the wind is bad.

A larger boat is required to do this effectively (and safely).

Can these bigger boats get after redfish?

Absolutely!

  • Knowledge Bomb

Contrary to popular belief, great redfish action isn’t found in a foot or less of water. 

In fact, my best days of sight fishing were in ponds two to four feet deep.

Twenty-four inches is plenty to draft a bay boat and run a trolling motor, isn't it?

Conclusion

You really don’t need a boat drafting ten inches or less for great redfish action.

It certainly helps, but it’s the angler who makes the fishing trip happen, not the equipment.

Jump start your inshore education

Don't take years to learn these things:

  • Pin-point accurate casting
  • Find huge schools of redfish
  • Which lures work best (and how to rig them)
  • Knowing detailed fish behavior

This Really Works!

Thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. 

This course, like Inshore Fishing 101, has answered all of those questions I wanted to ask, including questions I did not know to ask!

Paul C.

Captain Devin went into great detail!

I loved the videos of being out on the water and catching fish, the boat setup videos, and how the course was not vague.

Fred W.

Captain Devin

About the Author

Devin is a veteran of the Iraq War and former fishing guide. He founded Louisiana Fishing Blog in 2012 to share his ideas as a charter captain and still writes in it today. Since then he's created a fishing university — LAFB Elite — where he teaches inshore anglers how to safely navigate Louisiana's coast and catch more fish.


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  • Hey Keith, thanks for commenting.

    I strongly disagree that it drafts that little and can explain why.

    First off, bay boat manufacturers have reason to compete on draft: it’s a metric inshore anglers are looking for. But what’s interesting is that this is not a metric bass anglers really care for. So bass boat catalogs tend to report a deeper draft (that’s the actual number).

    Perhaps a 24′ bay boat drafts 10″ towards the bow, but certainly not at the stern.

    You only need to measure it while she’s in the water (and I have done this on several boats) and you’ll find that bay boats draft more than what’s advertised.

    This isn’t a knock on bay boats or their shallow water capabilities, as this article I wrote clearly demonstrates.

    And that 2420 GTS you got, well, it’s a fishing machine! You’ll love it.

    Tight lines, and thanks for reading!

  • That 2420GTS drafts 10″. I just recently bought one and coming to Hopedale first of Oct.

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