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Styles of Fishing Boats Compared – A Guide to Basic Models

Fishing represents a wonderful hobby and a cherished pastime that goes back thousands of years. While there are many professionals in this domain, there are many more of those who enjoy it as a leisure time. Yet, both professionals and amateurs alike need to be able to reach the waters where they can engage in fishing. Some prefer to fish from the shorelines, but for everyone else, having the ability to hit the waters using a boat has no substitute. In that case, the vessel of choice is the fishing boat, but there is a range of models used by anglers, all with their particular traits. Because of that, here is a guide to the basic styles of fishing boats and how they compare to each other.

fishing boat


When fishing alone, the boat of choice is the dinghy. These small watercraft are the primary workhorse for any single angler in the world because of their simplicity. In many places, a dinghy usually means an air-inflatable craft with a single bench for sitting at its back end. However, dinghies can also be made from plastic and even light wood. In all of these cases, they are powered by paddles wielded by the angler who uses them.

Bass Boat

Named after a particular type of fish, bass boats are usually sleek and narrow, while they also feature a low front part. Most seat up to five people and can hold three anglers at the same time. Bass boats usually have a small motor at the back that is operated directly or via a steering wheel with a simple console located near the middle of the boat. With a length that goes up to 25 feet, these are the boat of choice for fishing tournaments because of their effectiveness.

Central Console Boat

These are larger, spacier, and slightly more complex than the average bass boat. They usually carry up to seven people. Most feature a recognizable T-shape shade in their center where the standing console with a steering wheel is present. The console allows the skipper to easily maneuver the boat and have a lot better visibility than that of the very low-seating bass boat. With their size and larger load capacity, central console boats are used for longer distances, including day-long fishing outings.

Flat Boat

This particular flatboat model is known by this name because of the shape of its hull, which is almost completely level with the surface of the water. This allows them to run smoothly in as little as two feet of water without the risk of snagging their motor’s propeller. Most models carry up to five people and anglers prefer to use them in coastal waters and lakes. However, any other body of water, like the open sea, makes them unstable and open to the possibility of capsizing.

Multi-hull Power Boat

These boots are the biggest option available to anglers. Essentially similar to the central console boat types, these are larger and more powerful. They can carry eight or more people at the same time, while most posses multiple decks – one below with a cabin, the central deck and the upper deck where the steering console is located. These boats can be used even when fishing in the open waters of a rough sea – their range and a multi-hull design that can deal even with demanding sailing conditions.

Each of these fishing boats has their advantages and disadvantages, but all of them are important to anglers who use them. With the right boat at their side, a single angler, just as a group of them, will be able to find the perfect spot for a great fishing trip.