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Best big water flats boat

9851 Views 29 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  Redbelly
I live in the panhandle of florida, specifically Destin area. I am looking for a a large flats boat. I have had everything from a 21 ft trophy cuddy cabin, bay boats, and currently fish out of a 18ft bass tracker center console. I'm looking for a flats boat that can handle open water crossing bays and run along the beach on calm days. I will be using a trolling a motor 90% of the time and poling 10% of the time if any. It will be fished also in tournaments at least once a month. Would like a wide stable boat with room. I have two kids(9 & 3 years old) that I take on the boat regularly. I have a budget of $20,000. Can be a older boat I dont mind working on. I would prefer 18ft and up but would be fine with a 16 footer if it had a nice ride. I've been looking at Mavericks, action crafts, key west, and hewes. What other brands should I look at and what models.
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· will pole for food
1,118 Posts
How shallow will you need to go?

For your budget and what it seems like you’ll be doing most, I’d just get an old 18’-20’ pathfinder bay boat for a few reasons: Your budget..Seems like you’ll rarely be poling.. Draft will be same or slightly more than some of the above suggestions...roomy comfortable layout...rough water ability.

I don’t think you’ll find a vantage for 20 or it will be a beater if you do...same with a big Egret, but either would be a good option otherwise.

Ditto the above suggestion for old Master Angler 18 too

Good Luck!
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