Well, it's still early being only the end of January. But for those of you intent on purchasing a boat this year, there are many things to consider when choosing the proper vessel. My professional life is dedicated to matching people with the perfect hull for their needs. The list of options available to a boater is just mind-boggling!
I mean think about it...when you buy a car what do you consider? Your purchase may be based on a number of factors including seating capacity, horsepower, and styling. But cars are just tools to get us to and from places, and most people are looking for a mix of practicality and cost.
Its not the same with a boat. Unless you are a commercial fisherman or a ferry operator, you do not need a boat! So the first thing to do when you are in the process of buying a boat is to throw "practicality" overboard. And for the sake of argument's sake, let's just assume you are disgustingly wealthy. If you are not practical, and you are stinking rich...it makes it a lot easier to find the perfect boat.
So for those of us that fit this category, here is the description of the perfect vessel:
Hypothetical boat must have lots of open area for fishing, with nothing in the way to foul hooks. Of course there must be plenty of seating throughout the fishing area with delicate, soft fabrics that do not stain, wear, and are hook-proof. The seating is of course, U-Shaped in the cockpit to accomodate the most friends while fishing. Of course these seats should recess into the floor, so that if one determines friends are in the way, annoying, or catching too many fish, one can push a button, and the entire seat assembly along with friends will disappear below the deck.
Now, the next thing that is important is the boat needs to sleep six comfortably. During the day,however, the beds need to disappear so that one can have room for coolers, a fold-up bicycle, dining table, helicopter, and fishing rods.
On sunny days, the boat needs to be a center console, on rainy days it needs to have a full windshield with canvas, and on cold days the boat needs a pilot house so it can be properly heated.
The boat needs to be trailer-legal and have less than a 1' draft so one can bass fish a few feet from the neighbor's lawn. It should definitely have twin engines and a bow thruster to allow trouble-free docking, but fuel consumption should be no more that two gallons per hour.
Finally, the boat must be seaworthy enough to take a 12' sea head-on, but light enough so it can be moved about the yard by hand.
This my friends, is the perfect boat. I wish you luck on your quest in finding yours!