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What size boat for Sandusky Bay?

  • skhartke
    Participant
    Somerset, WI
    Posts: 1416
    #1290633

    I have an opportunity to fish Lake Erie, out of Sandusky Bay the 1st weekend of October. I have currently a 16 ft Sylvan sport/ski with a 75 hp Merc, that we’ve rigged for fishing. I’m looking at a Crestliner 1850 Sport/fish with a 4.3 liter 225hp I/O or a Triton TR 21 with a 200 hp Merc outboard. What would your recommendation be for the best boat to fish it. Keeping in mind that I may only have the Sylvan as an option. In other words, I haven’t bought either of the others, YET!
    Thanks for any help. I’ve never fished Erie, and I’m not necessarily looking for advice on where to fish, just what I could fish from.
    Bottom line, in a pinch, could I make it in the 16ft Sylvan.
    Thanks,
    Steve

    Jason
    Participant
    Lake Erie
    Posts: 28
    #270661

    There are a lot of guys that fish the bay and the main lake in that size boat. The other Ohio staff member Wes uses a 16’er. The BIGGEST thing is to watch the weather, double check the wave forecast, make sure you have all your safety equipment and a working VHF raido.

    If the wind is blowing or there is a chance of it getting rough, stay on shore… No fish is worth your life…

    As for the other two boats, either of them would be a giant step up from the 16’er…

    Good Luck,

    skhartke
    Participant
    Somerset, WI
    Posts: 1416
    #270673

    Thanks for the info Jason! I hadn’t thought about the working radio. I guess I don’t fish lakes this big usually. I appreciate the info.
    Thanks,
    Steve

    Jason
    Participant
    Lake Erie
    Posts: 28
    #270704

    No problem… Atleast buy a handheld VHF. I think you can get one for $100-$125. It is a line of sight signal but it should get you atleast 3-4 miles reach.

    If Wes see’s this post I’m sure he will give you some first hand advice…

    Have fun and be safe!

    wes janke
    Participant
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Posts: 29
    #272823

    Steve,

    I have been fishing Lake Erie for many years out of a 15′ boat. The Sylvan that you have will work just fine providing that watch the weather. Erie can kick up in a hurry and if you are caught off guard, it can be a very hairy ride back in. Jason is right about a radio, I have a hand held Humminbird that I keep in the boat and turned on the whole time I’m out. It’s not so much for talking, but more for the weather reports.

    My rule of thumb is I really don’t venture out more than about 4 or 5 miles from shore. On Lake Erie a South wind is safest unless it’s really howling and you can pretty much fish any where you want. West winds aren’t too bad as long as they are under 20mph. North and East winds are usually pretty ugly.
    If the fish aren’t biting in the Sandusky Bay area you can always ferry your boat over to Kelly’s Island and fish over there. The Smallmouth should be real hungry at that time of year. I hope this helped you out.

    Wes

    skhartke
    Participant
    Somerset, WI
    Posts: 1416
    #272856

    Yes, it helped out tremendously.
    Thanks,
    Steve

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