It was about time for me to get a new inshore boat – our fishery and market has changed a lot in the past few years…and it’s a great time to buy a boat! To make this story short – I got an offer I couldn’t refuse on a boat that is perfect for my style of fishing.
The 19′ Fusion is so new it’s not get on the Pathfinder/MAverick website. What they did was took the 18′ redfisher, removed the seating and some of the hatches to open up the interior deck space and added a stand-up consol and leaning post. It’s also considerably lighter than the redfisher – and my preliminary tests have shown it to draft between 9 and 10 inches (a couple inches improvement over my skiff)! Not only that – with a 150 four-stroke my top-end speed is 60 mph and I can easily cruise between 30 and 40 mph!
With this boat, while I have lost a little bit of room compared to my wonderfully roomy skiff, it is a hardcore backwater fishing machine. I will have range that I could only dream of before and we will be able to fish many different areas during the course of the day. Furthermore, I have a great live-well system – a standard 22 gallon and a 25 gallon that also doubles as a release-well. I have it rigged with an remote-controlled minn-kota, power pole XL and will be putting a poling platform on shortly.
This powerful hull not only thunders right through chop but is quite dry….and drafts about as little as you can hope for from any v-hulled bay/flats boat. Time to ride in style folks!
A few preliminary pictures – I have since swapped out the trolling motor and am waiting on my GPS and poling platform. I’ll post more pics as I finish rigging it to my liking!
How about the fishing? Inshore is rocking right now – just like it should be in August and September…and hopefully leading into an incredible October! The red drum are numerous and they are hungry – we can thank a great year-class of fish as well as the new sea-turtle regulations reigning in some of the out-of-control gill netters and allowing a few of the fish to make it through! We started to see the benefits of these new regulations almost immediately!
Katie and I had a great day yesterday. We eased into a very shallow bay on the incoming tide and snuck up on several marshes that have been holding good numbers of fish. Today there were several large schools and the incoming low-pressure had them chewing…in fact they were slamming schools of silversides so regularly that there were OIL SLICKS coming off a couple of oyster bars.
Before we even cast – we saw their orange backs patrolling the bar while they slammed unfortunate baitfish. Our first two casts resulted in a 32′ fish for myself and katie breaking off a BEAST. She quickly followed up with her own 33′ NO SPOTTER. We played with them throwing big topwaters – often they would hit it before we could even flip the bail.
We ended the day chasing a school of about 200 fish around an oyster bar – and i was fortunate to land a couple on the fly.
What an awesome way for my wife and I to fish together, for the first time, on the new boat!
John was the 2nd client to fish aboard the fusion – and we found several large schools of reds using a shallow bay. John had a ton of hook-ups using a cork and a halo-shrimp – while we had a bunch of LDRs he managed to land a couple great fish before we had to go in. What a great half-day!
Ol’ Philip and Lila – I’ve been fishing with Phil a long time. In fact, I believe he was the 1rst or 2nd client who fished aboard my brand new PArker 21SE probably 6 years ago. Well – he and his lovely “I will out-fish dad anyday” daughter, Lila, got to be the first clients of mine to ever fish aboard the fusion!
We stank it up on the incoming not finding much in the muddy newport river, so we cruised an easy 40 mph to a new area and found clean water and several schools of reds. Dad lost a couple, as did Lila, before Lila brought in a 30 incher to break out drought.
As the tide dropped down, we hit the docks – and again, Lila beat out dad landing another slot fish and a 17′ flounder. Way to go girl!
Always great to see you guys!
While I had already picked up the new boat – I had not had time to finish the break-in period and did not want to throw-things together for a client so Larry, Mike and I fished together on the skiff. We had a decent morning, finding several slot fish in the newport along with a few good strikes. Docks were rather dead but we did hook up a couple reds and an under-sized flounder or two. Good job guys!