Your thoughts on Water Master rafts



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  • Your thoughts on Water Master rafts

    I've seen these advertised for years and finally saw a couple on the upper Kenai a few weeks ago. I have it on my short list of one-man boats to purchase for fishing the Parks Highway streams and occasionally the upper Kenai. Does anyone have experience with these? If so, what are your thoughts?

  • #2
    I have two of them! They are fantastic one man rafts and I use it a ton. Definitely worth the money, especially if you're a solo angler (like me most times!). The Upper is a favorite float of mine and I just drift along until I see fish on a gravel bar, pull off, and start wading. Easy and quick to set up, light in weight (easy to portage around those log jams in the braids!), able to handle light white water, and very versatile.


    • #3
      I know a number of guys that really like watermasters, but I prefer a one man cataraft. If you were to spend as much on a one man cat as it costs for a watermaster, you could have a really nice pimped out catboat.

      The main issue i have with the watermasters is there oar locks. I rented a watermaster a few years back and had issues with the oarlock cap and pin; the pin popped out of the base, and the cap was stripped and wouldn't thread on properly - this made for an extremely long and frustrating day. It was a rental boat and probably wasn't treated very well, but a stronger and more secure oar lock system is pretty important in my book. Especially running upper stretches of parks highway streams.
      "The North wind is cold no matter what direction it's blowing"


      • #4
        How about pack-rafts? Any experience as a fly fishing vehicle - ie: going from gravel bar to gravel bar.

        PR-49 vs Alpaca?


        • #5
          I have owned a watermaster in the past. It was great for fishing out of, had no frame to deal with, and very stable. I currently own one of the older style Alpacka rafts and they are a great access tool but not very angler friendly. The thing I liked about the WM was on a lake it was as maneuverable as a float tube while wearing fins and was great for trolling with my flyrod. My 85lb. lab/husky mix would ride on the back as I floated along on the upper kenai using my fins to slow myself down I would often fish on the drift with the oars at the ready in case I needed to get to shore fast or move myself away from an obstacle. I have owned several different types of personal fishing craft over the years and would have to say the Water Master was the most user friendly as far as angling was concerned. My only problem I had was they were hard to deal with but I understand they are under different ownership now so hopefully things have changed for the better.
          I am no longer surprised at what I am no longer surprised at ---Bill Whittle


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