So I was down in the Keys for opening of lobster season, and had found lots of big lobster during two days of scouting on the outer reefs. Come opeing morning the winds picked up to 20 MPH and the seas were at a steady 6 feet. We start heading offshore, and despite thousands of boats in the keys for opening day of lobster season all we see is a single 35 foot or so Big commercial boat heading off shore. As we pull past him, we see that every wave he hits burries his nose and sends water flying up over the pilot house but we are crusing easy and steady at 16mph with no problems straight into the swell, so we keep going.
Just about when we passed him, on plane with no problems except a bit of splash, he turned around and headed back in never making a dive... leaving my little panga as the only boat heading offshore that day on one of the busiest days of the season. I reached my spot no problem, left my girl on the surface to live boat and dove down a jug line to my spot, emptied the lobster nest I had identified with five nice sized bugs a day before , then headed to the surface. Visibility and conditions underwater sucked, so we decided to head on back inshore to the bay.
This is the roughest conditions my poanga has been out in yet, and was very surprised at how good the performance was. The video is of my little panga comfortably cruising at 18-20 mph through true 6 foot seas without a problem. As always the ride on this boat is smooth and comfortable and it never, ever pounds or comes down hard. The boat displayed no bad behaviors, the boat never rapidly decelerated, the bow never stuffed, there were no sudden turns or dangerous pitches like I have experienced in other boast in simlilar conditions. There was some spray but not one wave crested the gunnel at rest or while under way.
I have been in the same conditions in probably 30 other small recreational boats in my life, and there is not one other recreational boat less than 45 feet that I think would have handled the conditions better or gave a safer more comfortable ride.
This video is posted for anybody who sais that all pangas need tabs, any body who sais that all pangas pound, anybody who sais that pangas are flat water boats only, or that you need a powerful engine to bring a panga offshore safely.
For anyone contemplating how to set up a panga or anyother boat consider that Part of the success of this boat is the rear position at which the tiller is controlled from, and the very light construction and very light engine. Heavy boats dig in and decelerate, lighty boats bob like a cork keep their speed and keep going. When watching the video, imagine it was a center console and how much more I would be getting bouced around, or imagine I was i in the front like a pilothouse boat. The tiller allows constant change of thrust and steering with minimal effort to keep speed steady as well which helps to contol the boat a whole lot
Just about every cat I know would have been slamming the brigedeck or burying the amas and spinning or pitching , most front heavy cabin boats would have been taking waves over the house, most center consoles would have been slamming so hard that the boat would never been able to get up on plane. Enjoy the video, comments appreciated.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDZsxV6Htec