Something about this boat just seems to fit my needs. I wasn't looking to upgrade, but I went to Compeau's to look at the SJX, and my wife noticed this bright red Seaark Predator sitting on the lot. We took the SJX for a test run, and I was very impressed, but I couldn't get past the reduced amount of room up front compared to my 20' Predator with the rear consol. The handling of the SJX was amazing though, very impressive boat. I just couldn't bring myself to spend the extra 10 grand on it, but I was tempted with the black ice bottom and the slick winter camo wrap on it.
I bought a Predator with the 175 horse back in '04 and beat it up pretty good on the Ivishak and Echooka for 4 seasons. I replaced the bottom and sold it to a couple, and purchased a near clone with an '08 model and the 200 Optimax. Still a 20'er and rear console. I've added a bit of character to the '08 over the years, and have been contemplating upgrading to the 22' model so we have more room for the family. Craig had a guy wanting to pick up a used Predator, so I ended up selling the '08 and picking up the '16 a few days ago. We took it for a spin on the Tanana and Chena the other night and it seems to be much quieter than the '08. The girls love the extra room in the rear, and the GatorHide interior is a very nice touch. The handling isn't quite as responsive as the 20'er, but I'm getting used to it quickly. There also seems to be a lot more throw in the throttle to get up to higher RPM's.
It's going back in on Monday for a black canopy, stomp grate lever and throttle handle extension. The fuel gauge isn't working, so I'll have to have them look into that as well. I upgraded to a double axle trailer since I see myself making more trips down to Valdez with this one. I'll be picking up a bunch of accessories for the Caprail system as well.