Ok the guide I used on the little red thinks the little red said the gheenoe would be a great boat for me and my daughter to use. I may go look at it.
If the hull is strong enough you won't go wrong. You couldn't tip one if you tried. I'd pay the dealer to install mounts for those swivel bass seats (mounted flush, not on a riser). They make things far more comfy, and you can just lift them off if you're going bare bones.
I was with some guys this past weekend who live in Middle TN/Nashville area and have gheenoes, and they fish the Caney River and similar rivers in their area on a regular basis. Some guys have put linex on the bottom to help protect the hull from rocks/gravel/whatever you may hit or scrape, I've read where they have drug 'em across sand/gravel bars when needed/low water levels w/o much if any damage. Check out customgheenoedotcome and look for the Tennessee section.
Well I was 6 hours late on the used one I had my eye on. Somebody else got a nice looking white 15' 4" one for $600. Ill keep an eye out. Doing something on the bottom sounds like a good idea. I was wondering if you could glue a few thin like 1/4 inch thick strips of UHMW plastic on there to act as skids if you bottomed out. I bet it would make the bottom more rigid too.
I think I'm going to bag the Gheenoe idea. John boats are so much easier to find locally and I can upgrade motors seats etc more easily and not worry every time I graze a rock about knocking a hole in the bottom. My 👰 might need to have to deal with a trailer in back. Think ill hold off and see if winter brings some good deals.
I think you're wise. If I lived somewhere with fast water and rocks I'd feel better in aluminum. Just be sure you get a wide enough jon boat that its stable. The reinforced hull models by Lund are popular down here (the Ten Thousand Islands in Fl.). Folks like the semi V tunnels hulls as they'll run shallow and you can hit an oyster bar and not do much more than scratch the paint. Another popular thing to do is put some of that bar matting down to reduce noise. Look behind the bar at any restaurant ant they'll have this thick rubber honeycombed stuff down. Its no slip, comfy and cheap from a restaurant supply place.
my father in law has one and i swear that thing could float in almost no water. He has a 18hp 4stroke tahatsu and it will plane out in a hurry. great boat for fishing in the river. Oh and you can stand up in them.
1. Trolling motors--you have to keep in mind that you can only use a trolling motor effectively if the water is at the very minimum 12 inches deep. So while your boat may draft 5 inches, you won't be able to use the trolling motor in shallow riffle areas. Which means you'll have to be using a paddle in those areas, which means it would be nice to have a craft that actually handles decently with a paddle.
2. Weight considerations--if you're going to trailer the craft, you don't need to worry too much about weight, since you'll be using established accesses with boat ramps. But if you want to use accesses without ramps, you'll need something light enough to handle. That's the problem I have with a lot of the craft like Gheenoes. Unless you're a weightlifter, about 80 pounds is the max you can handle alone.
3. Stability--if you want to stand and fly fish out of your craft, it needs to be stable enough to do so. Personally, I think standing is a little overrated. You can learn to fly fish sitting down, and you'll get less tired and be safer doing so. Keep in mind that fly fishing sitting down is similar to fly fishing while standing in water about halfway between your knees and thighs, something that all wading fly fishermen do regularly.
I still don't know what exactly I'd recommend in your situation, just wanted to throw those thoughts out to you.
I've used canoes almost entirely since the early 1970's. They are light enough for one person to load, you can launch from anyplace, can be powered by a small gas or electric trolling motor. I use a 17 foot Old Town Tripper and a 18 ft. Old Town wooden Guide model, both are double ended. Square sterns don't paddle as smoothly and if you get into some thick areas on streams that are over grown with brush, just turn around in the canoe and paddle back out with a double ended. Both of my canoes are stable enough to stand and cast in, but you can do fine sitting down. I finally bought a boat this summer for more lake fishing for walleye and pike, and salmon fishing will be a lot safer on Lake Superior with the boat. It's a tough choice to make.
I have both a jon boat (1436) and a kayak for fishing the Little Red. I use the kayak MUCH more than the jon boat. It handles both the low water and high water better than the jon IMO. With the jon boat in low water I have to walk it down almost all the shoals (especially Cow, Richie, & Winkley shoals!) wher the kayak can float through the biggest part of them. In high water I feel much more comfortable in the kayak in those currents. Casting is easy sitting in a kayak. As stated before, its the same as casting while wading waist deep. Paddling up-river in low water is easy as there is very little current except for shoals. When the water is up we just deliver my truck down river and do a float to that point. One of my favorite stretches is Cow Shoals to Swinging Bridge. We drop in at Cow Shoals & have my truck at Swinging Bridge waiting for us. If you do decide on a jon boat, be VERY aware of the rivets as you cross shoals. You can pop a rivet VERY easily!
Hope this helps!