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Inflatable Kayak Reviews
Inflatable Raft Reviews
Sea Eagle 9 Inflatable Raft -
|The Sea Eagle 9 Inflatable Raft|
The Sea Eagle 9 Inflatable Raft is the slightly larger cousin to the raft I currently own, the Sea Eagle 8. And well, what can I say, I love my raft. My Sea Eagle raft has, despite constant use, never developed a hole or any sort of rip, and still functions as well as the day I got it (which was back in 2001!). Moreover, these inflatable rafts from Sea Eagle are just incredibly versatile - they make very good fishing boats and are excellent vessels for just floating on down a river.
Thus, the moral of the story is, if you are looking for an inflatable raft with a huge capacity that can pull triple duty as a river floating vessel (Class III whitewater), a fly fishing boat (good, but not the best), and a lake fishing boat (using the motormount package with floorboards), look no further - as the Sea Eagle 9 (or the SE 8, if you want a smaller size), is the boat of choice. For more information about the benefits of Sea Eagle rafts - and their safe usage - see Inflatable Raft Benefits & Limitations.
On the rest of this page, I'll provide a summary of the features of this boat and how to use them safely. More detailed information on safe usage of these rafts is provided on the Inflatable Raft Benefits page.
Move mouse over the image to see different features of the raft.
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The Sea Eagle 9 is truly an incredibly versatile little vessel. While straight out of the box it may not look much different that a cheap Wal-Mart thing, on the water, the Sea Eagle 9 trumps any inflatable raft that you can get for the price you pay. So let's take a look at some of the uses of this raft and the benefits it provides floaters and anglers.
Here's some other random information you might find useful.
Capacity : The Sea Eagle 9 is rated to have a capaicty of 5 people or 1000 pounds. Truthfully, I don't know how in the world you could get 5 people in the boat. Consider it a boat for 3 people with limited gear and 2 people with lots of gear if you want to be comfortable. However, the weight rating is true - the boat won't sink with 1000 pounds in it!
Set Up Time : Using the manual pump, allow about 15 minutes from the time you unroll the boat to the time it is fully setup.
Durability : You can poke a hole in it if you work at it, but it isn't easy. Generally, the raft "bounces" off obstructions. Best way to poke a hole in it is by dragging it across the rocks along a river (thus carry it over rocks and on land - it isn't that heavy, just a bit bulky).
Good Accessories to Have : Get a dry bag. Get a dry bag. Get a dry bag. Need I say more? A dry bag will keep your stuff dry (like your wallet/purse/lunch). The raft has a ton of tie downs on it. Just tie the dry bag to the raft and you won't worry about your wallet sinking into the depths of a river. Another thing I got was the Storage Bag for kayaks. Yeah, its meant for kayaks and doesn't fit on the bow of the boat that well. But it does fit - and makes a perfect place to carry the bellows pump, repair kit, hose and anything else "boat related." (like the storage bag). Storage Bags for Sea Eagle Products.
Overall, the Sea Eagle 9 Inflatable Raft is an awesome choice of a vessel for anyone who wants a raft that can do many things beyond just fishing. It works equally well for recreational floating, fly fishing and for lake fishing if you are smart and get the motormount option.
One common question I'm asked in emails is whether to get the Sea Eagle 8 or the Sea Eagle 9. If you plan on doing most rafting by yourself, then I would go with the Sea Eagle 8 as it is more maneuverable.
However, if you plan on going out with 2 people regularly or going out by yourself with lots of gear, definitely get the Sea Eagle 9. It only costs like $50 more and you have a heck of a lot more room to stretch out in the boat while still carrying lots of gear.
For further information, read the Inflatable Rafts Benefits and Limitations page, too.