Submitted: 07-26-2001 by tearnest
I love this boat. It's stable, but really fast. The hatches are large enough for my backpacking gear and the storage capacity is sufficient for all I need for extended river camping trips. I regularly fly fish out of this boat and, with the addition of homemade anchors, it's perfect for my needs as a fishing rig. Extra fishing rods strap onto the rear hatch and are easily accessible. Doesn't need a rudder; it tracks on a plump line and turns amazingly well, especially for a 16' boat. Give it a lean and it turns on a dime (homemade thigh straps do help, make 'em out of old pack straps). I use my Tarpon on moderate creeks, large rivers and lakes and it does the job with minimal effort. Haven't taken it to the beach yet since the Bull sharks seem to be eating people this summer.
This boat is so easy to paddle that I have more than doubled my normal range of fishing locations. These are sharp looking boats with that Greenlandish bow and they're pretty tough, too. In ref. to that post about dents..I bought mine from a rental place with a year of use on it and it has no dents, just a little normal wear that you really have to look for. And..the scupper holes are perfect for my weight (165 lbs); water flows out the holes but doesn't come in and keep my feet wet all day..I don't even use the scupper plugs (my girlfriend's Prism guarantees wet feet all day and the plugs don't really help). Waves from the "loud" boats do not wash into the cockpit when you turn into them; it's a really dry ride.
I rate this boat a 9 because it's a little heavy to load and the cockpit is wider and longer than I need. The only thing I would change would be to narrow it a bit to fit my behind better and maybe cut down on weight. I highly recommend the Tarpon and the folks at WS are very helpful, too. (And..it's pretty fast.)