Bay boat offshore/nearshore question

BodeanBodean Posts: 14 Greenhorn
I now have a 17' bay boat and was wondering how far offshore any of you typically take this size boat out and what maximum seas? I used to have a 19' deep V and was never afraid to go out but every now and then my kids still want to go to some nearshore reefs/wrecks (6-8 miles off St. Pete).
:banghead A Bad Day Fishing Beats a Good Day of Anything Else!

Monark 191CC
Sea Fox 172CC


  • DKDDKD Posts: 375 Deckhand
    6-8 miles is probably reasonable if you pick your days and watch the weather.
  • Pioneer180Pioneer180 Posts: 124 Deckhand
    Not sure on your SeaFox but on that shallow coast I wouldn't be afraid at all to go out 10-15mi on 1-2' seas on my 18' boat which has a lot of bow flare. On my east coast I'm at 500-600' at 3 miles so waves get bigger quicker so I don't venture too far. Then I have all the safety equipment plus PLB etc. just in case. With kids I would be ore careful. You should know your boat's limits.
  • ElementElement Posts: 1,749 Officer
    In a 17' boat with kids I wouldn't go offshore at all unless it was 2' or less. After that you just need to be safe and smart. Getting out when its flat is only half the trip. Is the forecast for increasing seas? Is there potential for pop-up thunderstorms/winds? Stay within 2/3 of your fuel range roundtrip. 6-8 miles off on a favorable day when all conditions are on your side would be safe boating in my book. I'm assuming you know how your boat handles out there and already established a comfort zone for yourself and your boat.
  • KeepCruzingKeepCruzing Posts: 58 Deckhand
    If you pick your days in the gulf, I wouldn't worry about going out up to 20 miles. But in the winter, watch for the fronts coming out of the northwest.
  • bay20bay20 Posts: 1,490 Officer
    I have a 20 ft Ranger Bay and run it probably further than I should being I only hold 41 gallons of fuel. It really always depends on sea conditions and just knowing the boats limitations. With mine I know in the worst conditions the best fuel consumption limits me to an 80 mile round trip day, on my best day by myself ran 108 mile round trip and only burned 28 gallons.
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