In today’s boating market, it seems bigger is better. Sport-fishermen now regularly exceed the 70-foot mark, and even outboard-powered center-consoles are carrying price tags approaching seven figures. Few builders seem interested in boats under 40 feet, so it was truly refreshing to see a new design from Maverick Yachts.
The Costa Rica boatbuilder is perhaps best known for its tough-as-nails charter boats in the 43- to 50-foot range, but the company has introduced a new model that really turned our heads: the Maverick 36 Walkaround.
I had a chance to fish aboard Hull No. 1, Super Fly, out of Los Sueños Resort and Marina, where we put the boat through her paces in real-world conditions.
Stepping aboard with Capt. Rudy Arguedas and Maverick’s sport-fishing director, Christian Rojas, it was immediately apparent that this boat was designed to fish hard, a lineage shared by all Mavericks. Maverick Yachts owner Larry Drivon says the boats are built for hard use — up to 3,000 hours of operation per year — while also featuring an attractive design and superb fit and finish. “When you fish as much as we do, it’s important to incorporate easy maintenance and economical operation in the build wherever possible,” Drivon says.
Cockpit and Helm
Despite an overall length of just 36 feet, the boat’s cockpit is sizable — Rojas and I had plenty of room working all day with two mates, and additional anglers wouldn’t be a problem. Large live baits are easily accessible in a set of transom-mounted tuna tubes beneath a fitted hatch that eliminates splashes and rattling while underway, while an in-deck livewell has room for smaller baits. The boat’s teak covering boards and deck mirror the look of much larger yachts. Where most boatbuilders would go with nonskid fiberglass, the Maverick’s teak deck provides softer footing, better traction and it also doesn’t reflect the sun’s glare. A solid mahogany toe rail and trim further accent Super Fly‘s understated beauty and classic game-boat lines.
A pair of aft-facing seats provides the perfect spot for anglers to sit comfortably while watching the spread, with plenty of storage beneath each seat. Forward, the helm deck offers additional seating in an L-shaped lounge to port. And while there is a lower station with helm chair, the marlin tower is the command center for the boat. It’s designed for all-day comfort; in fact, Arguedas rarely came down from his perch upstairs during our trip, even when running to and from the fishing grounds. The tower gives the captain excellent 360-degree visibility plus control of the electric teaser reels. A single Garmin multifunction display at each station offers plenty of information; combined with the open-array radar, spotting birds is a cinch, even at relatively long ranges.
The highlight of the boat’s layout is the deep walkaround. With the single-spreader outriggers mounted high on the tower, Super Fly has an amazing amount of unobstructed fishing room that extends all the way to the bow. This boat will easily accommodate a variety of fishing styles, whether you need to fight a blue marlin all the way around the boat, deep-jig for yellowfin tuna or spread out the kites for a sailfish drift.
Interior and Engine Room
As you would expect from a 36-foot day boat designed for a busy charter schedule, the belowdecks arrangement is comfortable yet easy to maintain. On the starboard side is a full head, along with a simple galley with freshwater sink, refrigerator and microwave. To port is a single bench bunk, with a V-berth all the way forward. Tackle storage abounds, with drawers and cubbies built into every bit of usable space in the boat. A self-contained Webasto 16,000 Btu air conditioner keeps things very comfortable, even in the tropics. Varnished mahogany trim adds a nice touch of elegance throughout the boat’s interior. A pair of 420 hp Cummins QSB 6.7L engines resides in the bright, Awlgripped engine room, along with an 8 kW Phasor generator for house power. Access to all maintenance points is excellent, and the bilges are faired and painted for easy cleanup.
|POWER:||Twin 420 HP Cummins QSB 6.7L|
Construction and Performance
Naval architect Erwin Gerards designed the boat’s hull, while the overall layout was the result of input from hardcore fishermen and charter captains in the Maverick fleet. The hull is cold-molded laurel blanco, a Costa Rican hardwood known for its durability, as well as composites and marine plywood. The topsides are composite in order to keep the weight down.
As we ran to the fishing grounds, we noted a cruising speed of 27 knots at 2,800 rpm, burning an economical 24 gallons per hour. Super Fly tops out at 33 knots, fast enough to relocate to a different spot in a hurry during a tournament. The Cummins engines provided plenty of power and torque, moving the boat effortlessly on plane without a hint of hesitation or smoke. And because Maverick Yachts is truly a custom builder, the 36 can be configured for a Seakeeper gyrostabilizer and up to 550 gallons of fuel capacity.
We started our day at a well-known reef about 25 miles from Los Sueños, where we caught a surprise 250-pound blue marlin — a first for Rojas — just 10 minutes after putting the lines in the water. A few sailfish releases later, we put the tuna tubes to work as we switched to slow-trolling live bonito, hoping to find a black marlin for a grand slam (we actually raised a black but it faded away without a bite). As the day wore on, Arguedas spotted birds on the radar, so we sped offshore and loaded the fish boxes with 25- to 40-pound yellowfins until it was time to call it a day. Super Fly proved to be a nimble, comfortable fishing platform, and she backs down like a demon.
“We put everything we have learned over the years of building Maverick boats, and spending thousands of days on the open ocean, into this new design,” Drivon says. “And that experience has paid off. The 36 is designed to perform as a great-riding offshore day boat that could do well in a very wide variety of fishing situations, in Central America or in the United States.”
And thanks to a recent agreement with Saunders Yachtworks in Gulf Shores, Alabama, Maverick hulls may now be either fully completed in Costa Rica or imported into the United States and finished at Saunders. Owning a beautiful, truly custom sport-fisher has never been easier.