by Peter Jung •
Doing boat tests for the magazines can sometimes throw you a curve ball and that was certainly the case when I arrived in Shepparton to do some reviews for Boats and More. Lined up ready to head to Lake Nagambie was a nice little fishing tinnie and to my surprise, a Sea-Doo Fish Pro 155. It was definitely going to be a different kind of boat test.
The drive from Shepparton to Lake Nagambie gave me the opportunity to give Mark Frost from Boats and More the third degree on what features the Sea-Doo has, especially those targeted towards anglers. This conversation drove home to me that you need to keep an open mind and look at each test on its merits.
After the initial question going through my head, I was quick to realise that the Fish Pro 155 isn’t just a Sea-Doo watercraft with a few rod holders attached. A great deal of thought has gone into creating a fishing friendly platform, making it an option for the angler who wants to fish, but wants the fun as well.
WHAT YOU GET
From a fishing perspective, the first inclusion is the Garmin ECHOMAP Plus 62cv chart plotter sounder mounted on the dash. This quality sounder offers navigation as well as Chirp ClearVu sonar scanning using an in-hull transducer. The Garmin units are easy to use and have quality imagery.
To aid with stability at rest and to add storage versatility the rear deck platform has been extended. The extension is not blatantly obvious, however, this platform has a duel purpose as it also houses the LinQ system. This is a mounting system that allows you to attach an icebox, spare fuel or even a ski pole to the platform, maximising the versatility of the Fish Pro. It is also extra area for you to stand and fish from.
The flexibility doesn’t stop there either. The rod holders can be placed in multiple positions around the icebox using a click and place system. The icebox is also large enough at 51L to hold enough food and drinks for a day or to put livies in if your plan is to target some of the larger pelagic species.
There is significant storage in a hatch in front of the seat. When I say significant, I mean serious. There is room for large and small items. Netting can be put in place to separate items and there is also a smaller compartment that has dry storage for your phone and other valuables.
Want to play tunes while you are on the water? No problem! The Fish Pro has a Bluetooth sound system that ensures whatever your music requirements are, you can listen to them.
Last, but certainly not least, are the seating arrangements. The seat itself has been squared off. This maintains the comfortable driving position, but also means that at rest you can sit facing to the side. To further facilitate this, the gunnels for the foot wells have been reinforced to protect them and to give you a brace point when fighting a fish while seated.
POWER AND PERFORMANCE
As far as testing is concerned, I really don’t have a reference point to compare the Fish Pro 155 with anything else. Sea-Doo watercraft are powered by Rotax motors and the Fish Pro has the Rotax 1503 NA 155hp engine. I can’t say that I have ever driven anything like the Fish Pro before, but it certainly can go quickly if you want it to. They manoeuvre well and it is surprising just how agile they are, even at speed.
I left most of the driving to Mark Frost from Boats and More. He spent the majority of the time we were on the water on the Fish Pro and when not required for photos, he was off putting it through it paces. I have to say you couldn’t get the smile off his face.
STABILITY AND FISHABILITY
We did not spend a lot of time fishing from the Sea-Doo, but the little bit that we did do was comfortable. Stability as rest is no issue. There was no underlying feeling that you were going to be tipped into the drink even when we were hit by the wash of the ski boats going past.
We did use the Sea-Doo as a camera boat for another boat test. Mark and myself were on board filming and photographing another boat as it did runs pasts, as well as jumping between the boats while on the water. I didn’t fall in the water, so it was definitely stable.
I can see the appeal of a watercraft like this and why there is a growing group of anglers taking to the water on them, especially on our bays and larger waterways. There are enough well thought out fishing features on the Sea-Doo Fish Pro 155 to effectively go fishing and yet you still have the option to just have fun using it. It definitely has a broader appeal.
CHECK THEM OUT YOURSELF
Mark and Simon from Boats and More were very knowledgeable about the Sea-Doo and the features and options available. The Echuca and Shepparton Boats and More dealerships do on water days and attend shows, so if you are interested in anything Sea-Doo check out their website www.boatsandmore.com.au or contact either of the stores.