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Thread: Need ideas for van topable lake fishing boat

  1. #1

    Default Need ideas for van topable lake fishing boat

    Current situation: Fish from father-in-law 18ft lund with typically 4 adults and a child (now our new baby added soon). Sometimes have 6 adults if brotherinlaw and wife are with. Fish in freshwater open lakes and large flatwater river. This works...but is obviously a little cramped with thre full load.

    Needed: Our own motor boat. We currently fish wife and I from a OT Guide 147 but its too tiny for our growing family there for becoming my solo fisher.

    Requirements: Vantopable as we camp in a small popup tent trailer.

    Seaworthy for when the wind does pick up and gets the chop going. (we never go out if weather is active already but you know how weather and chop happens)

    Comfortable for 2 adults and 2 kids. Keeping in mind what we are accustomed to in dads boat with 6 adults.

    Motor capable as realistically wife cant handle paddling for very long. Not requiring a speed demon as I often use a 30# minnkota on the OT Guide.

    Narrowed search and availability to Clipper Macsport 18 ,

    Esquif Cargo, and 14' shallow V lightweight lund style boats ( We used to have a Scott dealer but they closed this winter. Have seen the occasional Grumman 19'.

    We are very comfortable in both canoe and utility boats and are very aware of weather safety and when to stay ashore.

    Main question is would you feel more family safer in a larger sport canoe or in a shallow 14ft tinny on a lake where the wind can produce some interesting chop. Safe enough to get to shore.

    Long writeup, sorry, just trying to give details on the problem I have in finding a boat.

  2. #2


    I have even considered building a motor canoe such as the Cinnamon 20 or if I could ever find photos of the Gil Gilpatrick freighter canoe. Would buy the book except I cant find actual build results anywhere. However building would have to happen outside in the yard.

  3. #3
    Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Delta Junction



    Welcome to the Alaska Outdoor Forum. The moderator of this canoe forum will be a dealer of Scott Canoe soon enough. The 18 ft. Scott freighter would be a perfect boat for van topping and still handle some rougher water. It's a large load canoe and will handle your whole family no problem. It's a little over a hundred pounds and should be no issue to load/unload. If you would like to see my freighters or get a feel for how they load/unload....feel free to stop by around the second week of may. Some of the other forum members are big advocates of the freighter canoe and you may even have a chance to look at other's canoes as well. A small portable outboard would serve you well. Future mods that would assist your future canoe to go further are : a canoe outrigger kit for modest ocean fishing, a motor lift for our shallow rivers, and home-made ethafoam sponsons for a possible over loaded canoe. These mods aren't a definite but are something to consider when you want to go further on a "budget". I hope this helps, and again.......Welcome. Make sure you take the time to read through all of our older threads as you will benefit greatly from our knowledge.

  4. #4



    You Said, "The moderator of this canoe forum will be a dealer of Scott Canoe soon enough."

    Got details? location? Will it advertise in the canoe forum when he opens up?

  5. #5
    Moderator Alaskacanoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006

    Default Scott Canoe dealership

    I have been in contact for two months with Scott and have recieved a Dealership with these good folks from Canada.
    That was the easy part.. I have been in the retail and rental canoe business for 18 years now, but have always been able to get the canoes shipped up in a container from the lower 48 without the border.
    Some years ago , I purchased some canoes from Northern Fiberglass in Whitehorse, ( they no longer manufacture canoes there) and brought them accross the border as boats to be used in my rental fleet, not for resale. That still required that I get a broker to handle paperwork for the border crossing. I spent 24 hrs at the border waiting for approval. I don't want any problems like that again..
    getting them to Alaska for a decent price point is the biggest problem.
    Shipping costs $$$$ are the problem .
    Scott Canoes are excited to see some interest from Alaskans.once we can get the canoes here at prices that are in line with what they should be, we will have them on our lot here on the Kenai.
    I know we have a market for them, and we have been contacted by several people wanting the canoes.
    Those of you that want the canoes now, can get them In whitehorse. Scott has a dealer there.
    I have entertained renting a 30 foot enclosed trailer and making the journey myself and bringing back about 15 boats. Hoping to know in a few weeks.. or less...
    thanks for your patience, but like I said,, if you are in a hurry.. Whitehorse is the best option..
    When you come to a fork in the trail, take it!

    Rentals for Canoes, Kayaks, Rafts, boats serving the Kenai canoe trail system and the Kenai river for over 15 years.

  6. #6


    I am in Saskatoon, Sask, Canada. Our Scott dealer (also Osage) closed this winter. So my only closest to the Scott 18 is the MacSport 18 from the Clipper dealer here. Considering one with 4 seats and a removable rowing rig.

    Wont be any shallow river running or ocean stuff, however things change lol. Just a relatively safe small fishing boat in a lund utility world.

    I have scoured the forums and found a hell of a lot of information. Between here and Canadian Canoe Routes, i am almost sold on the MacSport or similar boat.

  7. #7


    Just realized there is also an Esquif dealer an hour away. The Esquif Cargo looks interesting.


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