Are you the kind of fishing enthusiast who frequently plans a fishing trip with friends or family? Do you like vacationing near lakes and streams where you can get an opportunity to fish? If so, then the Angler bay inflatable boat may be what you need.
My review of Airhead’s Angler Bay SIB is based on my findings after using the boat for 3 days on a long weekend at a calm lake.
Features of the Angler Bay
We used the 6 person version of the boat, you can also get 2 smaller variants: a 3 and a 4 person version. The 6 person model was big. We’re a family of 4, and we could easily fit, even with supplies.
With that said, I don’t think it would comfortably fit 6 people. You always have to take the advertised capacity of boats with a grain of salt. I mean you could probably stuff 6 people in there like tuna in a can, but why would you? It fits 4 adults at best.
The features of the boat were really impressive, it had a lot of little extras that make things more comfortable on the water.
Here are the pros and cons of the Angler Bay:
Big and spacious, but not heavy
Drink holders are unique, it makes going out for short trips with the kids more comfortable, as you have somewhere to put your drinks
High wall kept the water out even when it was a bit windy
Oar locks and side oar holders worked well
Oars and a pump are sold separately, which is unusual.
Not as roomy as you would think based on the size
Rear handle blocked when transom mount and motor was put on
Seats do not have a back rest
The Airhead Angler Bay is built with:
- multiple integrated drink holders
- a pair of side oar holders,
- four drain plugs
- 4 oar locks
- 2 fishing rod holders
- front and back carry handles
- wrap around grab line
The boat is manufactured using heavy-duty, 32 gauge vinyl with seams that have been electronically welded. This boat is further factory tested for the purpose of quality assurance.
The walls of the Angler Bay 6 are nice and high, so you can easily sit on them.
Beside the wrap-around external grab line, the boat also has an internal grab line, which baffled me. I mean the Angler Bay is not built for raging rapids, and you hardly need to hold on tight on a lake…
The Angler Bay comes with a battery storage bag, 2 inflatable seats and a ditty bag.
You should know that you will be spending another $60-100 for these items, which is a lot of money. Especially knowing that other similar boats (Intex Excursion 5) come with these included.
I wrote a review on the Excursion 5 as well, which might be a better pick.
The wall tubes of the boat are really big, which is good and bad. Good, because they are high up, so you can safely sit on them without letting any water in over the side, but bad at the same time, since there is not as much room inside the boat as you would think based on the size.
The inflatable seats are ok, not as good as the Excursion 5 though because they don’t have a backrest.
Regardless, the Angler Bay 6 is comfortable for a day at the lake, or even a river trip.
Here are the more important specs of the Airhead Angler Bay 6.
|Capacity||6 people – 900 lbs|
|Size||140″ L x 66.5″ W x 17″ H|
|Vinyl||heavy duty 32 gauge PVC|
|Accessories||2 inflatable seats, pouch, ditty|
|Features||2 fishing rod holders|
|motor mount fittings|
|integrated cup holders|
|4 oar locks|
Other Angler Bay reviews
Amazon is a great source of unbiased reviews, since you can read the opinions of other customers. Here are the Amazon reviews for this boat, I made notes of the most useful ones:
The Airhead Angler boasts impressive reviews with the majority of users pouring praise on the sturdy build and incredible features.
Most users approve of the stability of a boat that can comfortably carry 4 hefty adults, as well as a spirited pet pup.
Another cautious buyer who chose this boat after a long process of due diligence is very pleased with the way it performed in the mountain lakes.
All past buyers agree that the PVC used is strong and love the boat’s portability.
Those who have tried trolling motors by Newport Vessels and Minn Kota are content with the level of performance on the boat.
Despite all the great reviews, customers found the boat to be too narrow to comfortably carry six adults; it is, however, perfect for four grownups with a cooler and a pet.
One client revealed that the boat lost pressure after six hours of use although he was glad that the valves enable you to inflate the boat without allowing air to escape.
Who is the Airhead Angler Bay built for?
The Angler Bay is a high-quality inflatable raft that will appeal mostly to families and groups of friends looking to relax out on the water. The Angler Bay 6 has enough room for a 4 person family with added cargo, and is a safe choice.
The name “Angler” and the transom capability would also suggest that the boat is aimed at beginner fishermen as well. While it does have enough room for 1-2 fisherman with supplies, the soft floor does not make it stable enough. I would suggest you build a hard floor for the boat if you want to go fishing with it, and get the optional transom mount with a trolling motor.
Angler Bay modifications
As with Intex boats, a lot of people decide on modding their Angler Bay as well. Here are the most popular mods for this SIB:
When you use the Angler Bay together with a trolling motor, you may just take your boating experience to a whole new level.
You’ll first need to acquire a motor mount supplied by Airhead. This transom provides a place to attach the trolling motor.
You can attach any trolling motor to it, or a gasoline-powered outboard motor up to 3-4 HP. A trolling motor will serve you well. This type of motor is very quiet, operated by a battery, and comes with incredible efficiency. An electric trolling motor features a water cooling system and a built-in digital maximize control module; this enables you to only utilize the required amount of power for the level of speed you are moving at. Most of them have five forward speeds and three reverse speeds.
A motor can be installed easily and is fun for families, and even more useful for boaters who are going on long and more demanding trips on the water.
If you are interested in putting a motor mod rig together, you should read my article on electric trolling motors.
Installing a canopy is another very popular mod for SIBs. Who wants to be burned by the sun all day long, right?
While there is no dedicated bimini top for the Angler Bay, you can still buy a canopy set and glue the base to the tubes of the boat.
Read this guide on installing a bimini top.
If you plan on taking the Angler Bay fishing, building a hard floor should be one of your first mods. Sorry, you can’t buy them separately.
The solid hard floor will provide extra stability, which means you’ll be able to stand up and cast.
Have a look at this detailed guide on how to build a hard floor for your boat.
Airhead Angler Bay 3 vs 4 vs 6
The Angler Bay comes in 3 variations. I had a chance to review the 6, but after reading up on the other variants, these are the differences between each type of boat:
Angler Bay 3
Angler Bay 4
Angler Bay 6
|Angler Bay 3||Angler Bay 4||Angler Bay 6|
|Capacity||3 people||4 people||6 people|
|Size||96″ x 54″||109″ x 56″||140″ x 66.5″|
|Vinyl||24 gauge||30 gauge||32 gauge|
The capacity of each boat should be taken with a grain of salt, as maxing it out will make the boat very uncomfortable. The Angler Bay 3 is for 1-2 people, the Angler Bay 4 is for 2-3, and the Angler Bay 6 is for 5 people at max.
You also want o think about the gear you will be putting into the boat. If you want to go fishing with a lot of supplies, tackle box, cooler, etc., you will need the Anger Bay 6.
Another difference is the internal grab line. The 4 and 6 variants have it, the 3 does not.
The manufacturer – Airhead
Airhead is a popular manufacturer of inflatable watersports products. They are based in Colorado.
The company has a website and a support service, but I cannot find any replacement parts for the Angler Bay.
Opinion of the Angler Bay
During my weekend with the Angler Bay 6, I got to test it thoroughly with my family. The boat performed well, it was very easy to haul around thanks to its low weight. It didn’t leak air, and it had features that are unique to this boat (cup holders).
However, I would not recommend this boat to people looking for an inflatable boat of this size. The competition is just better.
Check out the Intex Excursion 5 instead. It is cheaper, comes with oars and a pump, has better seats, and you can buy replacement parts to it online if you need to.
Airhead Angler Bay opinion
Airhead’s Angler Bay is a lightweight and portable, yet strong inflatable boat. It will inflate or deflate in a matter of minutes. It is great for lakes and low paced streams and comes with enough capacity to carry your family (about 5 people), or 2-3 people plus fishing gear.