Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Rowboat for fishing and camping ABC Islands area?

  1. #1
    Member Buck Nelson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Fairbanks
    Posts
    338

    Default Rowboat for fishing and camping ABC Islands area?

    I have experience paddling and rowing, including some long trips (Alaska rivers, Mississippi River and the Yellowstone etc) but I have virtually no experience rowing on salt water.

    What I'd like to do is take a weeks-long fishing and camping trip in the protected waters of the ABC islands area. I'd like to use a row-able or paddle-able boat of some kind. Doesn't have to be fast, but it will have to have considerable capacity and I want it to be safe if used sensibly. I currently have a 14' river raft (not self-bailing) a too-small inflatable kayak, and a scanoe, but no ideal boat, that's for sure.

    I'd want enough room to haul all my stuff around: crab pot, fishing gear, big tent, stove, gun, cot, dry bags.

    Covering a lot of water each day is not going to be the goal, although I will be moving my whole camp every week or so.

    1. What kind of human-powered boat would you folks recommend?
    2. What other advice would you have (respect the tides, etc)? Would I want a dry suit?
    3. Would it be crazy to use my raft and frame if I only do a few miles a day max?


    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,959

    Default


    I would think this would do the trick. A white water dory.

  3. #3

    Default

    A friend used an enclosed rowing shell of some sort to row around Afognak Island years back. Dunno the details of the boat, but I can tell you there were was no large tent or crab pot in the cargo. Pretty spartan camping gear if the gear held true to past form. The biggest deal was really, really knowing the waterways and especially the shelters and beach-able beaches. A prior scout of the route with a power boat was key. It can be a long, long ways between places safe to land, and you need to know them (and the weather) before you start a crossing. Without that key info, I wouldn't attempt it on a bet.

  4. #4
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    5,594

    Default

    There's a reason the Alaskan Natives use kayaks. They are very efficient human powered craft. Yes you're limited on how much gear you can carry but they are seaworthy and relatively fast.

    While a good raft would certainly be stable and reasonable sea worthy, if you've ever tried rowing it in even a modest head wind you'd know you make almost no headway and a cross breeze can blow you significantly off course.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

  5. #5

  6. #6
    Member Anythingalaska's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Sitka, Ak
    Posts
    659

    Default

    If your planning on coming over to Sitka, your going to have one hell of a ride going through Sergius Narrows if you don't hit it at slack tide! It would be good to know where you plan on paddling in the ABC area. While Chatham Strait is on the inside 'protected' water; some of the worst weather I've ever encountered has been there (albeit not in the summer time). If I had any advice, it would be to study the tides and make sure you hit all the straits right. You'll gain a few knots just going with the current.

    Generally weather is fantastic in the summer, and there are hardly ever any big storms or heavy winds. If you plan on fishing, I would make the trip to Sitka, or even start from here. So many islands and passages you'll never get bored. Plus it's right on the ocean, so the fishing will be exceptionally better than places further inside like Juneau and Ketchikan.

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    There's a reason the Alaskan Natives use kayaks. They are very efficient human powered craft. Yes you're limited on how much gear you can carry but they are seaworthy and relatively fast.

    While a good raft would certainly be stable and reasonable sea worthy, if you've ever tried rowing it in even a modest head wind you'd know you make almost no headway and a cross breeze can blow you significantly off course.
    +! for the kayaks...but I am biased! lol.

    I am simply amazed at the efficiency of kayaks...especially the Hobie mirage drives. The sit on tops these days are capable of fishing in places I would feel very uncomfortable fishing in my 21ft center console with a 150HP engine.

    http://www.youtube.com/guidesak

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,959

    Default

    Have to go back to what the OP wants to carry.
    "I'd want enough room to haul all my stuff around: crab pot, fishing gear, big tent, stove, gun, cot, dry bags."
    I think the white water river dory is the only boat that would do it and be safe. I saw some times that I didn't have fun on the Coast Guard Cutter I was on in Southeast Alaska

  9. #9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MGH55 View Post
    Have to go back to what the OP wants to carry.
    "I'd want enough room to haul all my stuff around: crab pot, fishing gear, big tent, stove, gun, cot, dry bags."
    I think the white water river dory is the only boat that would do it and be safe. I saw some times that I didn't have fun on the Coast Guard Cutter I was on in Southeast Alaska
    You are probably right. My outback has a 400lbs capacity. Pro angler 14 has a 600lbs capacity. So if that enough, I stick by the kayak. But that's not a lot of camping gear for sure. The tandem mirage stove kayaks are 425 and 550 pound capacity.

    They are all self bailing and super stable. You are only leisurely going to go 3.5 to 4 knts max, but using your legs, they are super efficient... Especially in windy conditions.


    AlaskaKayakFisher.com
    Guidesak.blogspot.com
    My personal pages...I'm not a guide.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •