OPEN­ING UP

Sport Fishing - - FISH TRIALS -

Based in Wild­wood, Flor­ida, Crevalle now of­fers three models, in­clud­ing the 24 Bay, 26 Bay and the 26 Open, which features the same run­ning sur­face and swoop­ing sheer line as the 26 Bay. Yet the 26 Open is the first Crevalle model with a deep, open for­ward cock­pit while re­tain­ing an aft cast­ing plat­form — what some call a hy­brid lay­out.

The gun­wales in the bow are 25 inches tall, and a re­cessed pow­der­coated alu­minum bow rail of­fers an ex­tra mea­sure of se­cu­rity when go­ing for­ward. To gain el­e­va­tion, use the step in the bow to as­cend to the fore­peak, which proved a handy place for Austin to stand as he threw the net. Grit-style non­skid along the gun­wale tops helps as­sure trac­tion when walk­ing along the rail with a net full of wrig­gling live baits.

We used one of the 26 Open’s twin 28-gal­lon bait tanks in the aft cast­ing plat­form for our morn­ing of fish­ing. Had we needed even more room, a 12-gal­lon well un­der the seat for­ward of the cen­ter con­sole would have ac­com­mo­dated a sur­plus of pilchards. Spe­cial baf­fles in the cor­ners of each livewell iso­late the stand­pipe from the main tank to keep it from be­com­ing an ob­struc­tion to bait­fish.

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