I took delivery of the first Beavertail BT3 in March of 2011, this might be the best decision I have made in my ten plus years of guiding in Key West. The Florida Keys and Key West are known for plenty of windy days and big water like Northwest Channel near Key West and the Marquesas crossing. Since being in the new BT3 I have not taken the soaking wet pounding like I have taken over the years in my former skiffs. My body doesn’t ache after a week of wind and my clients certainly appreciate the smooth, dry ride.
There has always been a comprise in the flats skiff world between shallow draft and comfortable ride. Not anymore. The BT3 not only offers a very shallow drafting skiff on the pole, it also provides an extremely comfortable ride even in rough seas. The 18 foot length and sharp entry cuts into the chop which makes for a smooth ride, and the huge bow flare makes for a dry ride and twice the area on the forward casting deck. The BT3′s shallow draft will allow you to get to those tailing bonefish and redfish in super skinny water. Due to its wide beam the BT3 is also the most stable flats skiff I have been on. My clients can easily walk down the wide gunwales and I don’t feel like I will get thrown off the poling platform.
Poling the BT3 is very similar to poling most 17 – 18 foot skiffs with a couple of exceptions that put the BT3 above them all. There is absolutely no hull slap, the BT3 is extremely quiet when gliding across a flat. The BT3 tracks very well and on very windy days the back end doesn’t blow around nearly as much as other skiffs allowing me to spend more time paying attention to my clients and looking for fish rather than fighting the boat.
The new Beavertail BT3 is one of the finest flats skiffs period. With it’s clean lines, simple layout and huge storage capacity, the BT3 is a functional, stable shallow water fishing platform and a great looking skiff.
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