Rowboats and Dinghies

Rowboats and dinghies are ideal for a simple getaway.  These aluminum or wooden boats can be powered by a pair of oars or a small outboard.  Simplicity is the order of the day, and the kind of fishing that you do with them brings out the kid in each of us, every single time.

In the sweetwater, what’s better than digging a coffee can full of earthworms, threading them to a hook, attaching a bobber, and working the shoreline?  Casting out along a weed bed, near some blow down, or along the edge of a drop off is as easy as it gets.  When a bass, perch, or panfish tugs on the hook and makes the bobber dance we find ourselves smiling and laughing.  It’s a refreshing way to fish for kids and
adults alike, and as many fish are landed as steal our bait.  Most of the time the action is fast and furious, and the hoots and hollers are contagious.  Pack some sandwiches and sodas, bring along a transistor radio and listen to a ballgame, and catch ‘em up.  When you’ve caught enough for an evening fish fry, take a break and let the kids row the boat.  They’ll enjoy learning how to work the oars as much as catching the fish.

Saltwater fishing out of a dinghy is equally as fun.  Flat-bottomed boats don’t do as well in the brine as they do inland.  V-hulls cut through the chop and bring fishermen to the sandy bottoms for fluke and the flounder.  The fishing is nearly the same, just substitute a clam belly, sandeel, or cinderworm on a pyramid sinker and you’re good to go.  If you get too warm just jump overboard.

Adding simplicity to our otherwise busy lives is always a good thing.  Rowboats and dinghies with bait and bobbers is one of the best ways to go.  The memories that you make are almost as sweet as the memories that you already have.

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Tom Keer

Tom Keer

Tom Keer is an award-winning writer who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a Contributing Writer for Covey Rise magazine, a Contributing Editor for both Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program.  Keer writes regularly for over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics related to fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.  When they are not fishing, Keer and his family hunt upland birds over their three English setters.  His first book, a Fly Fishers Guide to the New England Coast was released in January 2011.  Visit him at or at