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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thinking about next year already and want to get some ideas regarding boats.

I'm thinking of looking for a 14 foot jon boat or a waterfowl kayak (similar to the Beavertail Phantom). I like the jon boat idea because i can use a motor and trailer it as opposed to finding a way to transport the Phantom (dodge durango doesn't have roof rack) and paddling it. Plus, i think the jon boat allows for a little more room to haul gear. I mostly would hunt Nayanquing, Shiawassee, and crow island with it. Is the jon boat a good idea or more burdensome than it's worth in those areas? I hunt alone most of the time so ease of use and one man operation is probably the most important thing here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
keep in mind pulling over dikes with whatever boat you choose, especially alone.
That's why I was thinking no bigger than 14 foot jon boat. I also figure a jon boat gives me access to not only the managed areas and their marshes, but also much more of Saginaw bay than I could do with a waterfowl kayak (provided I'm careful and don't take it way out there).
 

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hunted SRSGA with my 16' jon once (ollllld boat, much flimsier and lighter built than the new ones), and even with unloading the gear and pulling the motor it was still a chore for three of us to get it over without a winch (had blind on it still though). but i definitely agree with your versatility thought process.
 

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Even a 14' flat bottom will be a heavy boat for one person to drag over any dike especially the ones at Shiawassee. If you primarily hunt solo and still want room for the occasional partner this is what I use. It's a 15' Grumman Sportboat. It's perfect for the managed areas for one or two people and still has plenty of room for gear and a dog. I hunted this past weekend two guys, gear and a dog with no difficulty. I love this boat it fits my type of hunting perfectly. I also made some homemade rollers to push it over the dikes this way I don't have to unload the boat. Harsens usually has rollers at the dikes but I still carry a set just in case.

This is the boat that Shi Kid has !!!

I have since painted the trailer :)
 

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I have a 15'10" 48" wide jon boat. It has a 2500# winch for dikes. And its big enough to play out in the marsh of the bay. I run a 27 hp long shaft mud motor works well at crow island and managed hunts. Now u can go smaller but u dont wanna have to take days off due to weather, when the birfs are really here.

Sent from my SPH-D710 using Ohub Campfire mobile app
 

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Look at something that will give you a little more free board, in case you are caught out on open water when it starts to get rough.
 

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I'd look into one of those flat back canoe style boats like shi kid has. Seems like a great one man kill boat for managed areas.
I agree with this line of thinking, by yourself, rather easy to get around. Can be used at the GMA's....you can get out on the Bay, weather permitting. Put a small outboard on it and you'd be good to go IMO. You could also use it on
small lakes. The portability sells this one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Ok, so based on advice here, I'm thinking either 14-15 ft jon boat with winch or flat back canoe or something like a beavertail phantom or stealth. Have to see what comes up on craigslist, but i think I'm leaning towards canoe or stealth 1200. Have to figure out a modified trailer for it though so i can transport.
 

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If your'e thinking of going with a canoe go with the Grumman Sportboat. With the Grumman Sportboat you get the best of both worlds. You get the stability of a jon boat w/o the weight and the portability/versatility of a canoe. You'll also have more room than a canoe has. Add a small lightweight shortshaft outboard and you have a good lightweight rig. You can put a small mud motor on it if you want to. It's definately not the type of boat to take on the big water but the areas you mentioned in the first post it's the perfect set-up.

You'll have to be patient if your'e looking for a used one they're not easy to find because they're such a great boat and people don't part with them often, but keep checking on Craigslist they'll eventually show up. I met a couple hunters last year they couldn't stop complimenting me on my boat they fell in love with it.
 

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I really like the stealth 1200. I picked one up this year used and I have used this more than my 16 ft boat. I can handle a dozen decoys gear and one other person. It is a bit heavy for one guy but you could manage it if your smart about it. I put a electric motor on it and it runs pretty decent but you will have to watch the wind sometimes.

we can try to plan a hunt over by me and you can check oout the boat if you are interested in the 1200 stealth.

Jim
 

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I bought a boat that I could hunt out of for this year. I got a 14' ultra lightweight boat, its a shallow vee in front and flat bottom in back. I hunt mostly at Shi, I bought it so I could take a few guys with me, but I mostly hunt solo. That being said, I still would recommend not trying to pull a boat yourself. I never did pull it myself this year, I think you could if I removed everything and the motor and gas can, but that's really sucks pulling across hulien rd, by yourself. The best solo setup is a flat back canoe with a small 2-4 h.p. outboard. That way you can pull the dyke by yourself, you won't be able to pull Jon boat by yourself unless its a 10 footer. Or you can go with the bigger 14' jon boat and buy a chainsaw winch, that's the "have your cake and eat it too" option. But that cake comes with a hefty price tag, the saw/winch combo can easily run 1000 bucks (which is more than I paid for my boat, motor, and trailer). As for the kayak option, that good for the close zones, but at SHI that will limit your available spots. I love my boat cause it works great for fishing too, but I am gonna snag a flat back canoe for next season. How small /short do they flat backs come, most people I see have 14-16 footers I want a smaller 10-12 foot if they make them, anyone have one for sale?
 
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