Bass fishing boats and bay fishing boats are two very different creatures. One is exclusively made for fishing, while the other is more versatile.
How can you choose between them? It all depends on what you’re looking for.
Fishing for bass is a unique discipline, and it requires a purpose-built boat. You’ll want a bow area with no obstructions so that you have a clear view into the water for about 270 degrees.
This design feature also allows straightforward foot control capability for your trolling motor and a logical and commanding spot to secure a great fighting chair. Your bow should also include live wells for your bait as well as your catch.
Bass boats are also extremely powerful, fitted with a single outboard motor producing at least 200 horsepower. That lets you get to the spots where the fish are biting ahead of your competition, and it also means you can get your catch back to shore quicker when you’re all done.
In short, a bass boat is a great tool for the job of bass fishing, although it’s more of a scalpel than it is a saw. If you need a fine tool for fine work, a bass boat could be in your future.
Bay boats are quite a bit more flexible than bass boats, and that’s due to their fundamental differences in design.
They feature a prominent center console helm, which allows the fisherman complete 360-degree access to the water. Since you can easily transition from the helm either fore or aft, with gangways on either side of the boat, this control layout is most logical for the kind of duty a bay boat is expected to deliver.
A lot of bay boats also feature bow seating, making them multitaskers. This means you can take pleasure cruises with family or friends if you don’t feel like fishing that day. The design makes a more versatile boat, and for some, this is all the difference.
Bass boats are laser-focused on one thing: tracking down fish. If that’s your game, and if you only ever fish in lakes and reservoirs, a bass boat is a great choice.
But if you need your boat to be able to accommodate more than one activity, perhaps a bay boat is what you need. Their user-friendly layout and features make them adaptable to different situations, which means they can bring more fun to more people.