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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just purchased an Outcast pac 1000 pontoon boat from the classifieds. It comes with cataract oars and upgraded oar locks. Also has a nice anchor with it as well.

I won't be picking it up for a few weeks and I'm trying to get ready!

I need to get a pdf as well as rod holders. Anything else that I should be considering? I plan on floating the s rivers mostly.

I have some experience on the oars, but nothing major. I've paddled the cowlitz and Spokane rivers.

I've been looking online for videos and lessons but can't really find much. Here is one video that I found, does anyone have any good YouTube videos that they recommend?

 

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Get yourself a pair of adjustable Force Fins as well. As long as the river isn't moving very fast, they'll let you slow down your speed so you can fish as you float.

I've got this same boat - or at least similar - the Outcast Ferrari Series 10' model. The fins make it possible to fish when I'm floating, but not nearly as easyily as controlling the boat with oars in the river, but at least make it possible to fish water that I'd be passing by otherwise.

Another thing you'll want is a long handle boat net. It is very hard, or nearly impossible, to reach over the side or between the tubes to net a fish with a regular sized handle net while sitting in the rower's seat.

You might also want to get a small assortment of NRS cam straps in various lengths to secure you gear on the boat - things like your cooler, a spare oar, etc.

As far as rowing, these boats are very easy to row and control. Unless you are planning on some serious white water - not recommended to start - you should do just fine after about 5 minutes on the oars. The only word of caution I'd have with the boat is to be careful when using the anchor. It can be extremely difficult to pull a 10# anchor on this boat, and the anchor won't hold the boat in anything more than moderate current flows - you shouldn't anchor in fast moving water anyway. Generally, I only use the anchor when I pull the boat onto the shore, except in lakes.

John
 

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That DS video is great to look at but take notice of the guys wearing helmet you think they are wearing them for falling rocks:D Need practice go down a calm river first to get use to your boat not one roaring 8000cfs
 

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Nate, you may find this sobering but I don't think you'll ever be able to conquer this.
My suggestion is to save your frustration and just sell me your boat for 400$.:D

Seriously, always remember, aim at what you don't want to hit and backrow away from it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nate, you may find this sobering but I don't think you'll ever be able to conquer this.
My suggestion is to save your frustration and just sell me your boat for 400$.:D

Seriously, always remember, aim at what you don't want to hit and backrow away from it.
I have a Colorado pontoon that I'll sell you for cheap.
 

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You'll be fine (and have a lot of fun). I suggest dropping in a lake for a while to get a good feel for rowing the boat. Pontoons turn very easily, and it's good to have a feel for that before you try any rivers.

As has been said, avoid anchoring in all but the gentlest flows, and back row away from trouble. Do not try to power through trouble by rowing forward. Your backstroke is much stronger, and the slower you're moving, the less trouble you'll be in if you hit something.

I got dumped once in my boat, on the first trip I took. It was one of those spots where a riffle drains toward a rock wall/clay bank/etc. That was the day I learned to trust my backstroke. I also learned that what seem like strong oar shafts can be bent very easily when you try to use them to "push off" a rock wall instead of maintaining your backstroke until the current grabs you and pulls you down past the wall. As soon as my oar touched the wall, it buckled, and the next thing I knew, I was upside down in the water. Got out quick and unharmed, but I knew that was something NOT to do.

Use common sense, respect the water, and scout drops before you commit to them.
 

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Get good at using the oars in opposite directions to spin yourself faster. If you hit a pontoon on a rock, which you will, I think it's important to get yourself facing the right direction again quickly and ready to take on your next obstacle, especially if you're new.

Also, this is probably common sense (to everyone but me): don't play the one-more-cast game when it's getting dark. A couple years ago, it was getting dark as my buddy and I floated a stretch of unfamiliar river. We were using six weights and throwing streamers for trout, with random wild summer run steelhead potentially present. Last cast of the evening, I hooked a hot summer run that immediately took me into my backing. That 5-10 minutes to land it (and the obligatory 5 subsequent casts) put us into full-dark on a moonless night. I knew there was one rapid between us and the pullout, but of course, it's lower than I remember it and I get hung up right in the middle of the rapid. I could barely hear my buddy yelling over the roar of the water. Turns out, he took a different line and got stuck, too. We both almost flipped due to the pressure of the current, but thankfully both of our boats sat still, wedged in the rocks. When my boat hung up, I almost slipped off the seat (which can happen if you're not prepared for a sudden stop). We used the oars to get ourselves off, the rocks, but it could have been ugly if we'd have flipped since it was pitch black. It WOULD have been ugly if it weren't a hot August day/night.

Pontoons feel nice and safe, but don't get complacent. I wouldn't have pulled the one-more-cast BS if I was in a DB.
 

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I took their class. It is aimed at convincing you that you can safely negotiate the Yakima lower canyon, which pretty much anyone can do even without oars. They don't (and to be fair really can't) cover anything difficult in a three hour float from Red's to Lmuma.
I too took their class. If you have had any experience at all rowing, I would skip this one. You will pick up a couple of pointers if you have never rowed before.

Now is a good time to shop for pfd's. Find a good fit. Do a search on this forum and you will get many suggestions. I mostly like my NRS Chinook. I also have a Stearns Universal that has a good center pocket/work bench that can be handy at time, but is annoying at others. I frequently use it when doing any aggressive wading.
 

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pontoons typically don't have very large diameter tubes like a cataraft does. that means you are sitting pretty low in the water and if you encounter 'real' white water, it is going to be in you lap, be prepared. you already have taken step one and bought a 'toon that has real oars. the cheap aluminum oars that come with these 'toons have gotten lots of folks in serious trouble because they will bend and fold up when you least expect that to happen. getting thrown into the water during winter months, even if you have a quality PFD, is to avoided at all costs. pick some simple water and get acquainted with how this 'toon behaves and how quickly you can turn and spin. YOU need to get the feeling for how to control this before you encounter any situation that requires that knowledge. class II is about as far as i would take something like this because of the small diameter tubes.
 
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