A drift boat may be the most expensive piece of fly-fishing equipment you buy this decade. Like choosing a spouse, it pays to look around, as the wrong choice can be costly. Drift boats aren’t just fiberglass or aluminum anymore, and more than materials, it’s the design, features, and rowability of the boat that matters. If you’re spending your recreational time in the boat (all day for weeks every season) it should be both comfortable and appropriate for the water types and the seasons you prefer to fish in.
Choose Your Ride
The best drift boats are made from high-density polymer, inflatable PVC, fiberglass, or aluminum.
<h2>Boulder Boat Works CRT $6,000</h2>Boulder Boat Works uses a high-density polymer (plastic) instead of fiberglass or aluminum to mold its boat hulls. According to general manager Steve Ehredt, the hulls are stronger than fiberglass, and quieter than aluminum, which also sticks on rocks. Ehredt says the polymer hulls are virtually indestructible and that while Boulder Boat Works has a lifetime guarantee on the hull, they’ve never actually had to repair a hull due to regular river use. Our tester said “this boat is responsive enough to thread through even the tightest rock garden, but tough enough to take a big hit when your newbie buddy is on the sticks.” When the company first produced polymer boats, they had wood detailing that thwarted the low-maintenance of the rest of the boat, so Boulder Boats Works created the Convertible River Taxi (CRT)—an all-polymer boat that’s also available with built-in Yeti coolers under the seats. Beam: 74" Length: 15'10" Weight: 360 lbs boulderboatworks.com