By Matt Claiborne
Rowboats, Inflatables, and Kayaks
Aluminum Jon Boats
Saltwater Fishing Boats
Fishing kayaks are usually fitted with a place to store a small cooler and some small tackle boxes. Many have accessory mounting systems that hold extra rod holders, paddle keepers, and even electronic fish finders.
A jon boat is a flat-bottomed skiff, very simply built, small, and utilitarian. They’re great first boats because there are no complex mechanical components or big maintenance requirements.
Bass boats are generally sleek and fiberglass and built to carry as much horsepower as possible. For tournament fishing, the best hole shot and top-end speeds mean making it to the best honey holes and back before weigh-in.
A skiff is a generic name for a shallow-water vessel. They’re usually open, with no cabin or cockpit, and just an open deck that is easy to fish from. Bass boats are a type of skiff, but their sleek looks and high performance separate them from the competition.
The ultimate go-anywhere, do-anything vessel has got to be the saltwater fishing boat. These fiberglass boats range from 16 feet on the small end and top out in the range of mega yachts. But if you focus on only the small ones, you’ll find many options that make some of the best boats for river fishing.
You don’t necessarily need a fishing boat to go fishing! Many folks enjoy a little morning fishing trip in their pontoon or deck boat. If your kids love wakeboarding, no one will fault you for fishing off the side between tows.