Choosing A Boat con't
Step 2 – Ask Not What Your Squirt Can do For You…
…but what you want to do in your squirt! What kind of paddling do you like to do? Are you a surf maniac, stopping for hours to shred every wave in sight? Are you looking for serious downtime, to hang with the fishes? Are you a river-runner at heart, looking to explore all the play features a run has available? Are you a competitor at heart, a perfectionist looking to hone your skills to the highest possible level? Squirt boat designs today run the gamut from full-on cartwheel and surf machines at one end of the spectrum, to long, slinky roam-mobiles on the other, with combinations of both types spread out between. There are boats out there to suit all these styles – your builder can help you decide which one will best suit your needs.
Generally speaking, wide, flat-hulled squirt boats with hard chines will be more surf- and cartwheel-oriented and less able to do mystery moves, while narrower, round-hulled designs without chines will be able to sink on command, cartwheel at any angle, but do not surf or play holes as well as the others. Laid out below are most of the designs available on the market today, in order of hull shape from “flattest” (surf-oriented) to “roundest”(mystery-oriented).
*NOTE – The list below is based on opinions that are solely those of this author; lend them whatever credence you see fit. I’ve been on the scene long enough to have an informed opinion on most of the current designs…having said that, I have also been accused of talking out of my ass on more than one occasion, so by all means gather as many opinions as you can on as many designs as you can. Boats included are proven, commercially available, “modern” production designs only.
Hellbender (Underdawg, Fish)
Asylum (Sneaker, Spy)
Shred (Bigfoot, Maestro)
Whirld (Wisper, Shimmer)