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I just busted out my round Buck's Bag belly-boat float-tube for some high mountain lake fishing. It worked fine for being 10+ years old. But I forgot how cold your feet can get after dangling them in mountain lake water for 6 hours straight. I have not used a pontoon style tube. I can imagine they make for a better casting platform sitting up higher than chest deep, but the thing that concerns me would be your exposure to the wind and it blowing you around, the ors getting in the way, can you row and fish at the same time, as well as the added weight of the pontoon boat over the belly boat style. I am considering an upgrade. Was looking for some feedback from anyone with experience with both types. Oh and by the way I happen to be 6'6" & 310lbs. and I hate unexpected cold water swims in goretex waders.....don't we all.
 
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There is a message board devoted exclusively to float tubing and pontoon boats on www.bigfishtackle.com. Here's a link to the message boards:

http://www.bigfishtackle.com/cgi-bin/gforum/gforum.cgi

You might try posting your question on the float tube board. There are lots of serious float tubers and 'tooners on there. The moderator of that board, TubeDude, seems to know about all there is to know about float tubes and pontoons. Those guys fish everything from the flatlands to high mountain lakes to saltwater from tubes and 'toons.
 

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Ill go ahead and throw out my ten cents worth on the subject, if anyone cares to listen...

I fished a bellyboat for a long time.  It functioned well for its purpose, but seemed to lack in alot of areas i deemed important for this region.  mainly, it was slow...and not very good in the wind.  Those two factors alone made it somewhat unappealing when it came to fishing the bodies of water i preferred, which were large and often windy reservoirs here in colorado.  another thing that made it difficult was the fact you sat so low in the water it made casting difficult and not so fun with larger flies if you were trying to get any distance with your casts.  I also found that when i did catch fish, i had issues with them sometimes tangling up in my legs as i tried to land them.  It worked, but....i knew there had to be a better option.  A few years ago i picked up a pontoon boat from jw outfitters...and it turned out to be a much better fishing platform.  I sit higher out of the water in a chair, have the ability to row with oars, kick with fins, or even utilize a trolling motor to propel myself.  By getting up out of the water in a chair casting became much easier and more effective, and i no longer had the issue with fish tangling up in my legs.  I also stayed warmer, as i wasnt halfway submerged in water as i was in my belly boat.  Getting in and out of the thing was also easier, as i didnt have to waddle around like a pregnant duck anymore when i launched myself from shore....i could just get in it and start rowing, instead of messing around walking backwards and such.  It is also a good craft for rivers, you can float rivers like the North Platte in them with the same manueverability as you have in a drift boat, given the fact you now have oars instead of just fins, which keeps you from being at the mercy of the current like a floating Cheerio as you are in a bellyboat.  as far as wind...its not an issue. ive found it handles better than a bellyboat. buy a decent anchor, that also helps.

in a nutshell, thats it.  they are more pricey, but if you spend alot of time in the water they might be worth the consideration.  im glad i made the switch....
 

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If you are gonna carry it very far or backpack with it,the 'toon is way too heavy.Other than that,the 'toon is the way better choice for colorado,specialy if you spend all day out there,like Rottal said.
 

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I like the belly boats for portability and you can get into the water quickly. You also don't have to park close to where you put in if you want to ride a bike or hoof it.
I have back pack type straps attached to carry on my back. On windy days I prefer my bass boat w/ Minn 74 trolling motor.
I've never used a pontoon and I'm sure that if I tried it, I would love it.
 

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I use a Water Skeeter River Guide Pontoon Boat because of its optional standing platform that enables me to make better presentations.  I had for several years been using a smaller pontoon boat without a standing platform, which made me feel limited in my casting as well as being confined to a seated position for the duration of  my time on the water.  I at times use a small electric motor depending on the body of water I am fishing and use the oars for finalizing my position and for directional changes.
   
I have never used a tube, but I plan on using one in the future.
 

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I think unless your going to be packing or hikeing into a lake or pond. Pontoons are the way to go, I used to rough the worst wind storms that South Park had to offer in my Pontoon with an anchor, and never had any problems with it and its a lot warmer than sitting in cold water all day.
 

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Hands down, the pontoon is the way to go. Higher and dryer and warmer which allows for more time on the water to fish. Check out Skeeter Pontoons nice rigs that won't break the bank.
 

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I'm also firmly entrenched on the toon bandwagon. Unless you are packing into remote mountain lakes of course. After seeing a similar device on eBay, a buddy and I crafted wheels which greatly increase the mobility of your toon. The parts can all be obtained at Home Depot, and with some basic fabrication (hammer, vice, drill) you can make your own. It locks in the up or down position so you don't have a giant rudder while on the water.



 

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Another option if you're looking into pontoons is a watermaster kickboat. I got one four years ago after using a low end pontoon boat a couple times. It's basically a scaled down river raft with only half a floor. You sit on a rigid seat with your lower legs (below the knees) in the water for control with fins, or keep your feet out of the water and use the oars. It's lighter weight than just about any pontoon and breaks down into a backpack for storage. In lakes it handles great but really shines on rivers. I can carry enough gear for overnight trips and it handles class III water like the raft it is. Enough of my sales pitch . . .just another idea if your shopping around.

TP
 
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