Yes, seriously – last Saturday, I spent an entire day aboard a 35 Everglades powered by triple 350-hp Yamaha F350 outboards.
We ran, we trolled, we ran some more, and then we trolled some more. We were one the water a half-hour before sunrise, and didn’t pull back up to the dock until half an hour before sunset. Extreme? Youbetcha. But for all you guys who have stood slack-jawed at the dock, staring at a triple outboard rig and wondering who would be insane enough to run one (this includes me!), all I can say is that you’ve just got to try it to believe it. (You can read my full review of the boat at HookedOnFishingboats.com).
The advantages of mass power are obvious: you can run like the wind. We cruised at 40-mph all day, and at wide-open throttle, this beastly rig hits 60. If we had a mechanical problem, we’d still have had twin engines to come home on. And with triples (okay, this advantage isn’t so obvious) you actually get a smidge better fuel economy as you do with twin engines, running at the same speed.
The disadvantages are just as blatant: we burned so much fossil fuel that our carbon footprint could be seen from outer space, and the start-up cost of this rig is as expensive as most American homes. Scratch that – it’s actually more expensive than most American homes.
I’ve tested plenty of triple engine muscle-boats for magazines and web sites through the years, but actually spending a day of fishing on one was different. It opened my eyes to one thing I’d never discovered before: It’s fun, just plain fun, fun, FUN to be able to crash through the ocean at outrageously fast speeds as you go from hotspot to hotspot. By cutting down on the cruise time you have more flexibility to abandon a dry hole, and look elsewhere for the bite. And this increases your feeling of freedom as you fish.
So: is running around with 1,050 horses on the transom a little overly extreme? Sure. Do you burn shameful amounts of fuel? Yeah. Would someone have to be just a little bit nuts to buy one of these rigs? Probably. And if I could ever bankroll one of ‘em, I would!