Dream Sport-Fishing Boat for Marlin Readers

Every offshore angler has a dream scenario for their on-the-water ride. For some, it's also their reality
Forbes 50 Grand Slam
Above is the 50-foot Grand Slam from Forbes Boatworks. One reader said his very own Forbes 53 was his dream boat. Courtesy Wallis Higginbotham

Everyone has a dream sport-fishing boat. Whether you love the classic 61-foot Garlington or the new 37-foot Viking — or one of the other beautiful sport-fishing machines that roam the world’s offshore waters — there’s probably something that catches your eye and captures your imagination.

Marlin asked its Facebook fans this question: What is your dream sport-fishing boat, and why? The results varied — spanning nearly 20 custom boat builders and close to 100 different sport-fishers. While most stuck with the classics — Viking, Spencer, Bayliss, Jarrett Bay, Merritt and others — a few people went with center consoles such as the Contender 35.

Some said they already owned their dream boat. One person even had an entire fleet in mind. Here is a cross-section of the answers:

The Viking 92 Enclosed Bridge Convertible is shown at the docks at the 55th Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. Courtesy Viking Yachts

David J. Cowhey Jr.: The Viking 92-foot enclosed flybridge. It’s one of the fastest and most technologically advanced boats in its class, and even with all the beauties coming out of North Carolina and Florida, I’m New Jersey born and bred, so I have to stick with my roots. Plus, it’s about a 20-minute drive to the Viking plant from my house. I’d fish it up here in the summer and fall, then sail it down to Florida and the Bahamas to fish the winter/spring.

Mark Chronister: 43-foot or 46-foot Merritt. Next would be a G&S built just how I want it. Merritt is a classic and the best-looking boat ever built. Tons of history. G&S is quality and tough!

Bayliss 77 Wave Paver
Wave Paver from Bayliss is a 77-foot sport-fishing monster. It’s also a dream boat for one of Marlin‘s fans. Courtesy Bayliss Boatworks

Bailey Nichols: Singularis 90 or 77-foot Wave Paver from Bayliss, or Mama Who from Jarrett Bay for my big boat because of the flair and they are beautiful. Yellowfin 39, Contender 39 or Scout 380 for my second one. Cobia 296 next. And for the last a Scout 251 XS or a Yellowfin 26 for a bay boat.


Dan Hayes: My 53-foot Custom Carolina Sportfisher built by Irving Forbes in Wanchese, N.C. One of the most comfortable and driest rides on the ocean! Thank you, Forbes Boatworks, for an awesome fishing machine!

Viking 37 Billfish
The Viking 37 Billfish is a newer boat, but it still has turned heads in our sport. Courtesy Viking Yachts

Chris Johns: I’d pick the 37-foot Viking Billfish. There is enough room for the guys and it will appease the wife with accommodations.

Chris Roseman: 70-foot Jarrett Bay [because] their style and innovations put them in a class of their own. I’m a [North Carolina] boy and love the N.C. coast and the boat-building history that goes with it.


Ryan Oros: The 75-foot Nordhavn Expedition Yacht Fisher. It’s not the fastest yacht but it can reach out and touch the spots nobody fishes.

Garlington 61
The Garlington 61 is one of the fastest sport-fishing boats ever made. That’s just part of the attraction. Courtesy Garlington Boats

Brian Yuhas: 61-foot Garlington, because there’s a reason they keep building the same hull for over 20 years.

Henry James: 66-foot Hines Farley, specifically the one that was named Double Dog. The quality and craftsmanship of this boat is superior to any sportfish I have been on. She rides a 6- to 8-foot swell as if it wasn’t there. Hines Farley kept it simple and it worked; that’s what I really like about Hines Farley. Very sad that they are no longer in business because I am sure they would make the best sport-fishing boats in the world today.


Michael Barry: I’ll take my 64-foot Weaver all day long.


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