My Sea Eagle boat saved me from being boatless. It's an inflatable, so it packs up to fit in our RV. It's safe and stable. I have a lot of fun with it, fishing, or just being out on the water.
About 10 years ago we headed to Alaska for the summer. We got a different travel trailer and a lot of different gear for that trip. I wanted a boat for the trip, but couldn't pull another trailer.
I had been in a folding boat before, and thought it was barely safe on a quiet Minnesota lake. I knew that I didn't want to be in one on a turbulent river or out on the ocean. That left me with the option of an inflatable.
I looked at the big name brands for inflatables: Zodiak and Avon.
Then, Coleen found Sea Eagle boats on the internet. The reviews were good. But, I had reservations about spending nearly 1000 dollars, on a blow up boat, from an unknown brand, over the internet. Remember that was back in the spring of 2001.
I bought the boat. I got the ten-and-one-half foot Sport Runabout. That Sea Eagle inflatable boat was one of the best investments I ever made.
Whether in the Tanana River, Cook Inlet, Lake Lucile, Resurrection Bay, or any of the waterways in Alaska, I always feel safe in my Sea Eagle boat. In 8 foot seas, you just throttle down and ride it out. It's as safe as the life rafts the Coast Guard requires on big boats.
At the same time I bought the inflatable, I got a new Mercury 15 h.p. out board motor. It was what was available at the time. I'm very happy with it also.
If I had to do it over, would I do it differently? The Sea Eagle, no, it's a good quality, safe, well built boat. The 15 h.p. Mercury? Maybe. Some small lakes have restrictions that limit the motor to 10 h.p. or less, and the Sea Eagle doesn't really need more than 10 h.p. It was a family tradition to run Outboard Marine products (Johnsons or Evinrudes), starting with my father's grandfather. This is the first Mercury, and though I hated to break tradition, it is truly a good motor. I'm looking forward to at least another 10 fun, safe, years from both my boat and motor.
If you're looking for a boat and motor you can take with you on your RV travels, consider an inflatable and a small outboard. Deflated and ready to travel, the whole boat fits into a carrying case that fits in an RV storage bay. I can't convey the enjoyment that I've gotten boating with mine.
Editor's note: My husband, Bob Nilles, wrote this article. He grew up spending summers and weekends on a Minnesota lake, where they had a fishing boat, a ski boat, a pontoon, a canoe, and a sailboat.