Monday, February 23, 2015

Product Review

Fish Cat Scout

I first started float tubing back in the mid 70s.  In those days there were only a couple of companies producing tubes commercially.  They relied on a truck tire inner tube for floatation and were relatively small compared to todays model.  You were in theater from the waist down and, with the primitive waders back then, it was cold and uncomfortable fishing.  We loved it! Fast forward to today and you have a myriad of boats available from many manufacturers and they keep you up out of the water for a more comfortable experience and we still love it!  At the shop we settled on the Outcast brand of boats because of the quality, customer service, and durability of their products. As a retailer, when a manufacturer can give you good value and less headaches you stick with them. My current boat is a Fishcat 4 Deluxe which suits most of my personal needs. It’s lightweight, rugged and packs down pretty small to fit easily in my Prius.  I had an older Outcast Oncilla pontoon boat that I used for group trips where i needed to get around and check on my clients but, with my lower back acting up on occasion, it became just too heavy for me to handle comfortably by myself. 

This past weekend I took a group of customers/friends to a small private lake in the Santa Ynez Valley and was able to borrow a Fishcat Scout from my Outcast rep, Alex Ramirez to test out.  These boats are a light ,frameless pontoon boat that have been on the market for a couple of years and, though we sell them in the shop, I had not had the opportunity to fish out of one.

The first thing I noticed was that it was, comparably, very light weight, just 35 lbs, and were very easy too inflate with just two air chambers.  The pontoon chamber is quite large so an electric inflator would be a nice extra.  The foot rest bar is a little tricky to get in place with cold hands.  Maybe they should supply some vaseline or liquid soap to was this part of the assembly. Other than that, adding the oars is simple and it  was a breeze to assemble and easy to carry to the stare’s edge.  The large deck air chamber sits you nice and high off the water and allows good fishing visibility and excellent comfort with the adjustable seat and back rest keeping me upright and comfortable all day.  As with many modern day personal floatation devices, a long handled landing net was handy to get to the fish over the large pontoons.  All in all, very easy to assemble and a joy to fish out of all day. May have to invest in a new toy. 

Suggested Retail $649


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