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Opinion? Walkaround vs CC with bow dodger

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Opinion? Walkaround vs CC with bow dodger

Old 04-06-2021, 11:53 AM
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Default Opinion? Walkaround vs CC with bow dodger

About to add another boat to my growing armada! Considering either a smaller walkaround (20-24ft) or a mid-size CC and adding a bow dodger to it. The primary purpose would be as an adventure boat...runabout to nearby dockside restaurants, camping, sandbar, and lots of time trailering it semi-long distance (200-300 miles several times a year). We would fish out of it from time to time, but just drop fishing off the coast for snapper or grouper. We're in Florida.

I want:
  • place for wife out of the wind/spray (can this be accomplished on a CC with side curtains or something?)
  • place for the kids to nap or sleep overnight (would a WA be significantly more comfortable than a CC with a dodger?)

What's your opinion on those options? What should I keep in mind before making the decision?
Old 04-06-2021, 12:02 PM
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It depends on a few factors.

At 24' foot, the cabin is somewhat usable, has a real marine head, maybe a sink; at 20' you are likely using a bucket/porta potti.

24' may offer galley icebox, not sure if this is important

Both offer shade via a hard/t top

Walkaound has a larger cockpit, but no space outside in the bow. CC has open bow.

Cabin can be equipped with screens to ventilate without letting bugs in. A dodger won't be tight against bugs.

I am sure there are other pros/cons of each. You should start a running list, and also think if any are bigger than others
Old 04-06-2021, 12:08 PM
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I had a cc w/ dodger and then upgraded to a walkaround. Walkarounds are more difficult to fish from the bow, but for me, they were better in every other aspect.

Is it hot in the summer? Well, yes. But with a towel over the hatch keeping the sunlight out, and adequate ventilation, it's always a little cooler than baking in the sun out in the cockpit. When I've been baking in the sun sitting in the back of the boat and need a break, I'll open the hatch slightly, throw a beach towel over it, and go lay down in the v berth to cool down.

It's far more comfortable to take a nap in the v berth than it is to sleep in the front of a cc under a dodger. When my daughter was little, she'd go into the vberth and take a nap while we were underway, and not wake up until we came off plane. It's not going to be the Ritz, but we fit the wife + 2 kids in the vberth to sleep overnight, and I slept in the cockpit with a thin air mattress.

Plus plenty of storage, even without making the vberth into one big pile of crap.
Old 04-06-2021, 12:09 PM
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Thanks! I hadn't thought about the dodger not being tight against bugs (noseeums are awful here)
Old 04-06-2021, 12:09 PM
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In Florida, the heat and humidity can be overbearing, so napping under a dodger in a CC might be a challenge. Small walkaround you could have A/C that's powered by a Honda EU2200 genny during the summer.
Old 04-06-2021, 12:16 PM
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I will add a couple things in favor of the walk-around:
  • Security of tackle. Easy to throw stuff in the cabin and lock it. Rods, electronics,etc. Stop for a bite to eat on the way to your destination. Stuff is relatively safe while you go inside. CC, not so much.
  • Extra bed, even when you are home. Buy a portable A/C and you have a nice place for the kids to "camp" while the adults are inside. I have done this with my walk-arounds as well as my RV. Sometimes, it is a great way to escape the snorer in the crew.
Both are nice. I see benefits of each. With my style of fishing, I would not buy anything that would not accommodate a trolling motor for bottom fishing. Just too much of an advantage to these not to make use of them. But sounds like you have this possibility with your the other boats in your fleet?
Old 04-06-2021, 12:21 PM
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Love my walk around. I have a 24 ft and just upgraded to a 27. For what we do the walk around is much better than a cc. So now I have a 24 ft to sell. Cc is probably the best for just fishing but I much prefer walkarounds
Old 04-07-2021, 05:26 AM
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Thanks everyone! Sounds like a lot of walkaround fans here.
Old 04-07-2021, 07:15 AM
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We've pretty much decided on a 25-27 ft walkaround or pilothouse as our next long term boat. We plan to overnight on it, so the cabin with a portable AC/generator are the deciding factors against a CC with bow dodger.

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