Posted by Seakarp on October 01, 2002 at 15:27:57:
These were my 1st two boats. The nav moves more easily in the water but is less stable, hence if you really try to get a head of steam going with the nav it will allow you to maintain that more vigorous pace more easily. That is not to say that it is not quite stable, it is. I weighed approx 200lbs when I had this boat I'm 5'7" and wide. I felt very secure in the nav, yet there were a couple of times at the beginning that I did get close to its' limits in stability, though I never tipped it over. I have heard tale of taller folk who have managed an unwanted moment of refreshment(dumped)in flat water. Setting up the nav to fish is do-able though the tankwell is sort of an odd deal that it is not that easy to fit with a live well or crate, but you can manage these things. Flat spots to put flush mount rod holders are a bit scarce except for the center rib. It is a light boat, which is nice, but being a short boat(12') it is still a bit cumbersome to put on the top of an suv, because the short length creates a very sharp angle when trying to put one end on the ground and place the other atop the car. That said, it is not a big deal, though it could really use side handles for moving it around.
The pro-explorer is both similar and different. The measurements are just about the same I believe, yet it is not the same boat. It is your father's Oldsmobile, with big, comfortable, plush covered bench seats. You could live in there if you had to. It seems to me that this boat is quite a bit more stable then the nav, you would have to work very hard to flip this puppy. It does move ok at a slow comfortable clip, which is what most of fishing is. Both the nav and the pro are very good at what most of us spend a lot of time doing, sitting relatively still on the water, without worrying much about small swell and small waves and staying dry in those conditions. The nod goes to the pro here, because it has a more stable feel and with the scupper plug in the seat plugged, it is the drier ride, though you can stay dry in flat conditions in either boat. It also has more open deck space and comes with the rear sites for the flush mount rod holders. They both have large hatches, but the pro has larger ones and the one in the middle is much more useful than the smaller round one on the nav and it opens and closes much more easily when your sitting in the boat. The one on my nav started to stick after awhile. If you want to move quickly for more than a very short distance you need to work quite hard at it, because mosey is the pro's middle name. Neither boat is built for speed but if you are working at it the nav will dance more easily to a faster beat. It is also a bit heavier than the nav.
Ok so my thought is, if you are a larger, taller person who is very concerned with stability go with the pro. If you want the more fishable, more comfortable boat and speed and covering larger distances is not an issue go with the pro. If I were in rougher seas I would want to be in the pro, but I would have to work harder to go home. If you want to cover more distance and want to boogie a bit more go with the nav, though neither boat covers large distances really well, for that you need a touring style boat. Either one benefits from a high back seat with a lumbar support and a nice thick pad under the seat.
These are of course only my views, but I wish to offer them as I have enjoyed and learned much from the generosity of the posters here and on similar forums.
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