Inflatable Boats

Inflatable boats have changed how we travel on water.

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Inflatable Boats
Fish Cat Float Tubes
Brian O'Keefe Photo
Triggerfish
Missouri River
Sun-block Cap Message From Scott O'Donnell All pictures are Mouse-over.

Inflatable Boats

Jon & Jeremy unloading boats... Fish Cat, Fat Cat & Prowler...

Last June 17-18 we tested and photographed Outcast inflatable boats as we rowed them, paddled them and propelled them with fins on both still and moving water. The first day I stayed on the bank and took pictures while other people assembled float tubes or played in the water with them.  I'm not sure I got the better deal.  It sure looked like my friends were having fun.  Inflatable boats were rare during the time of my youth, but have become very popular since the mid 1970's.  However, my internet research concludes that inflatable boats have been around for a long time.  According to the Guiness Book of Motorboating, the history of the inflatable boats goes back as far as 880 BC, when the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II ordered troops to cross a river using greased animal skins, which they inflated continuously to keep the vessels afloat. In ancient China, during the Sung and Ming dynasties, inflated, airtight skins were used for crossing rivers.  It was 1839, however, that the first inflatable boat pontoons were tested by the Duke of Wellington. In 1840, the Englishman Thomas Hancock designed inflatable craft and described this work in "The Origin and Progress of India Rubber Manufacture in England" published a few years later. In 1844, a Lieutenant Halkett designed a round-shaped inflatable bloat which was used in several Arctic expeditions. The Frenchman Clement Ader devised a floating vessel too. Indeed, many other pioneers invented craft that foreshadowed "inflatables". In 1913, the German Albert Meyer came up with a fairly novel design. By 1920, his company, A. Meyer Bau Pneum. Boote, was marketing his "pneumatic" boats, of which nine were already in use by the German Army.  During World War II the U.S. Navy used a host of inflatable boats as life rafts and landing crafts.  After the war, these military surplus boats sparked the current interest in inflatable boats and new companies sprang up to replace aging military surplus watercrafts as they wore out.  One such company was Aire of Boise, Idaho, who along with their subsidiary Outcast has become one of the most successful recreational inflatable boat makers in the world. They are fun to use.


Fish Cat Float Tubes 
Fish Cat 4
The absolute best float tube in the price range:
$149 with free shipping!
This is the most popular float tube series sold in the United States & we sell more than any other fly shop. Deluxe Fish Cat
Added storage convenience of inflatable seat cushions.
Great buy: $199, free shipping!

1
OUTCAST BOATS - Boise, Idaho

Float Tube Accessories
Float Tube Lakes.

Fish Cat 4 Float Tube

Fish Cat 4 Float Tube

BUY IT NOW!

The Fish Cat Series of float tubes offers several outstanding advantages. With the Fish Cat 4 the seat cushion and back are filled with sealed cell foam. The seat cushion supports you above the water rather than sitting in it as with other conventional float tubes.  This makes spotting and casting to fish easier.  It is also a much more comfortable position especially if the water is cold. These float tubes are fast and very maneuverable.
5-year warranty. 

Model

Inflated Size

Tube Dia.

Weight Capacity

Weight

Ship Size

Fish Cat 4

44" X 54"

12"

250 lbs.

14 lb.

20" X13" X 18"

Item Description Price To Top
FT0001 Outcast Fish Cat 4 Float Tube, color navy $149

Well, it's my lot in life to work hard taking pictures of John Jones as he plays in the water with fancy fly rods and fun water-craft.  John has spent a lot of time fishing lakes with inflatable boats.  As a matter of fact he used to guide fly fishing trips on local lakes.  He's the perfect guy for the tests.

Fish Cat 4 is the perfect size for most people...
John has no problem propelling the Fish Cat 4 upstream against a brisk current in Harriet Lake.

Lots of storage...
Ample storage allow access to gear.

Floating high & dry...
The angler sits above the waterline for comfort.

Quality construction...
Quality construction assures long life.

Quality components...
Quality components add value and safety.

2
OUTCAST BOATS - Boise, Idaho

Float Tube Accessories
Float Tube Lakes.

Outcast Fish Cat 4 Deluxe Float Tube

Outcast Fish Cat 4 Deluxe Float Tube

BUY IT NOW!

Add an air seat and back rest to the standard Fish Cat 4 and have the same above the water advantages with unbelievable comfort and the added advantage of being able to store your tube in a smaller space when it is deflated.
5-year warranty.

Model

Inflated Size

Tube Dia.

Weight Capacity

Weight

Ship Size

Fish Cat 4 Deluxe

44" X 54"

12"

250 lbs.

14 lb.

20" X13" X 18"

Item Description Price To Top
FT0003 Outcast Fish Cat 4 Float Tube, color green $199


Hex mania...

Got this photo & email from Brian O'Keefe:
Hi Guys,
I went back to
St. Paul to do some Scientific Anglers stuff, and then went to the Boundary Waters for some world class wilderness canoe camping and smallmouth fishing. The first night I was put in a cabin on a lake, the day before our 6 day - 24 portage canoe adventure. On the screen door was a “flock” of giant hexagenia mayflies. There were evenings on some lakes where hex hatched and drifted on the breeze. The smallies were gulping them. I skated a small yellow popper and it was trashed.
Brian

If you want to go on an inspiring visual tour of the fly fishing world, stop in at www.brianokeefephotos.com.


Triggerfish
Triggers eat clams, shrimp, worms & fish... Triggerfish pull hard...

I like fishing for about anything that has fins that will take a fly. Some days it is great to forget about the hierarchy of sportfish and just go fishing for whatever will bite. Sometimes you come up with some unusual critters. When we started fly fishing the Mexican coast, it seemed that American anglers only fished for dorado, billfish and occasionally roosterfish...and yup they are all pretty special. But, some days the winds or the tides just aren't right for any of the big three.  That led us to start experimenting in sheltered areas along the shores.  Most of the Pacific shore of Mexico is steep and rocky.  Much of it can't be fished from the beach.  But, it is easy to fish from a boat and the approach is much like bass fishing, where you cast toward the beach.  You never know what is going to grab your fly as you fish the shoreline of the Sea of Cortez. Some of the more unusual looking creatures we have encountered are Triggerfish.  Triggerfish are like Bluegills on steroids.  They pull very hard for their size.  The fight is usually them running straight for the bottom.  A large Triggerfish can really put a bend in your rod.  Triggerfish have a roundish, laterally flat body with an anterior dorsal fin. The first ray in their dorsal fish is huge and shaped like a trigger. They can erect this dorsal spike and lock it with the second ray behind it. This prevents predators from swallowing them or pulling them out of a hole in the rocks. This locking and unlocking behavior is why they are named 'triggerfish'.  Triggerfish are also known for possessing strong jaws and well-developed incisor teeth that are sufficient to crush the shells of mollusks, crustaceans and even sea urchins.  All of the Triggerfish we have caught, have been with baitfish imitating streamers while fishing for other species.  Usually a Triggerfish takes the fly as it is falling between strips.  Triggerfish may be observed blowing jets of water into sand to uncover their prey.  This behavior is also utilized to roll over sea urchins so that they can attack from below, where there are fewer spines to contend with.   The Triggerfish we have caught while fishing the Sea of Cortez have been where piles of rocks or ledges protrude from sandy bottoms.  Triggerfish are highly prized by the natives around the Sea of Cortez for their firm white flesh for making ceviche a dish made with raw fish cured with lime juice and chilies. Currently IGFA lists the all tackle record weight for Triggerfish in the Sea of Cortez at 14-pounds 9-ounces.  They do not list a record for Triggerfish caught with fly fishing equipment.  The largest we have caught are under 5-pounds.


Missouri River Report
Skip Gibson & a Missouri River rainbow... Sandy Japely & her guide...

Got a report from Mike Owens who spent the last two weeks fishing the Missouri River at Craig, MT.  Said he was a little early and the fishing was just getting into high gear about the time he left. High temperatures are reaching into the mid 90's and will be for the next next week. There is some chance of rain showers to cool things a bit.  Despite the warm weather, the Missouri River remains at a fairly cool 64°. Lots of hatches .....caddis, tricos, pseudos, and a few PMD's. Floating weeds make nymph fishing difficult. The ranchers are cutting their fields. Hoppers will move toward the river. Look for the big fish to start moving toward the banks to feed on big bites.  The smart anglers looking for really big fish will become hopper ploppers.


Long Bill 45+UPF Sun-block Hat
Logo Hat from The Fly Fishing Shop

This lightweight long-bill fishing cap gives extra shade to your eyes...critical for spotting & watching fish.  Rated at UPF 45+ this cap also gives extra protection from the possible harmful effects of UV rays.  They cup well to your head, and are not easily effected by wind.  The mesh liner inside the crown gives extra ventilation. Every Fly Fishing Shop Logo hat is certified lucky.  70% cotton, 30% nylon fabric.  Dark olive color.

Shade for the eyes...

Item Description Size Price To Top
LUCKY-2 Lightweight Lucky Hat from The Fly Fishing Shop, Long Bill 45-UPF one size fits all $15.95


Hola Anglers, 
The summer steelhead run in southwest Washington has finally picked up some steam. Whereas June was extremely slow, July has been considerably better for what ever reason. Last week Mike and I combined for eight steelhead and numerous lost opportunities in four days of guiding. The bulk of the action was on the Cowlitz but the N. F. Lewis also fished well with less time spent on it.
    
We need warm bodies!!!
We are going to extend our half day price of $275.00 for "pert' neer" a full day, to anyone who comes between now and the first of August. We'll start at first light and end at noon. We'll have drinks and munchies but, you'll be on your own for lunch. Here's a link to some recent photos: http://speywater.com/Photos/SW_Washington/2007/Index.html 

Wade deep,
Cast far,
Scott O'Donnell
(503) 738-9022 - Home
(503) 440-4895 - Cell
Speywater.com


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Fish long & prosper,
Mark & Patty


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