BY AMAYA THOMPSON
February 13, 2020
There’s more to lake cruising than sailboats and canoes. With the many boat options and finding one to match your lifestyle–it can be overwhelming. For a narrowed down idea, here are the 5 best boats for lake use:
- First on our list, and possibly the most common, fishing boats. These boats are quite versatile; made for both salt and freshwater. Depending on your preference, fishing boats can be manually manned or unmanned. As lake frequenters know, water conditions can change almost instantly. Fishing boats are designed to withstand varying weather and water patterns. It is a durable and stable asset for your fishing trips.
- Bowriders are best suited for residents looking to cruise, sunbathe or take a swim. This is a leisure boat through and through; meaning it is mostly for calm weather. Should you get caught in the rain, however, bowriders also provide a canopy to keep you dry. Another key feature is the seating, typically 6 people can ride together, perfect for relaxing with family or friends. Unwinding is a necessity and bowriders are great helpers.
- For social sailing, pontoons take the gold. Pontoons are nearly unsinkable, floating easily on the water no matter passenger size or weight of accessories. There is a large lounge area, various rooms and storage space for food, drinks or gear. No wonder it’s called a party boat! Not only is it great for entertainment, but also it’s safety. On most models, pontoons are built with high rails, removing the risk of falling off the edge. Being that they are so lightweight, it is important to be wary of rough waters. Do this and you, and your guests, are sure to have a pleasant experience.
- If you love a thrill, an HPB (High Performance Boat) will catch your eye. Unlike bowriders and pontoons, this is a powerboat, it feeds on adrenaline. The speed on these vessels can go farther than 150 MPH. Customization is another feature; many speedboat manufacturers offer buyers paint jobs, seat changes or boat tools. These are high dollar boats, ranging from $500,000 to $1,000,000, maintenance cost included. Truly a luxury boat, models come with the latest navigation systems, LED lighting, stereo and video cameras. Budget willing, High Performance Boats are a speed junkie’s dream.
- Deck boats are designed for big families, friends and pets. Bowriders and deck boats have many similarities, the major difference, though, is the size. Deck boats can fit about 14 to 16 passengers. These boats are a perfect blend of the following four, spacious, leisure friendly, speed capable and fit for fishing. Top brands are Bayliner, Sylvan, Tahoe and Sun Tracker. Despite the abundant space and features, deck boats are the most affordable. You could spend a minimum of $12,000 or maximum price of $100,000. Even better, they are extremely low maintenance and long lasting. Deck boats have versatility at an affordable price.
Over ten million recreational boats exist in the US alone, these five stand out and are the most commonly used. There’s a boat that fits everyone’s needs. As you plan upcoming lake trips, refer back to this list as your guide.