If you were to ask me what my favorite piece
of fishing equipment is, I would respond that it is my Hobie
The Float Cat is similar in purpose to a
float tube. Though it is made of two pontoons, though
unlike most pontoon boats this one is designed for still
water. My model is the Float Cat 60, which is 60” long and
43" wide. It weighs about 21 pounds and can hold a person as
large as 250 pounds. Shoulder straps for hiking to your
destination are also available.
If you want something larger, there is a 75” version, to which you can add oars, an
electric motor or even a cooler. The "60" is a great
size to slide into the back of a truck, or in my case the
back of my van. I just fold the seat down an slide it
What I especially like is that there are no
tubes to fill with air. The hollow pontoons are constructed
of polyethylene. This not only makes it always ready-to-go,
but gives me greater peace of mind when sitting in it. I
have no fear that I will loose air and sink.
The Float Cat keeps you pretty high above the
water, which can be good or bad. Good when the water is
cold, as only your legs below the knee joints is submersed.
Good too in that with my Force Fins flippers I can move it
along very smartly. But unlike some float tubes (especially
the original designs which were fashioned around a truck
inner tube) your higher profile in the Float Cat can present
positioning problems when the wind picks up. Not a
deal-breaker, but something to be mindful of.
The Float Cat is not cheap. I bought mine in
1995 for $500. The apron is separate, but essential. It is
what holds you in, like a seatbelt. It also keeps your line
orderly when stripping. The two zippered pockets (one on
either side of the apron) are essential for keeping your
gear stored. You can see the pockets hanging down from the
apron in the photo below, full of gear. The pockets are enough so that I don't
feel I need to wear my fishing vest.
I have had mine for nearly
15 years. It is a very sturdy design and has held up
superbly. I highly recommend it.
Check out the Hobie 60 at the Hobie Web site:
I bought mine at Feather-Craft, but I see
that they no longer carry the Hobie line. If you are
interested in finding a dealer, I would enquire through the
Hobie Web site. Good luck!