Since electric boat motors are often used for fishing, they are commonly called “trolling motors”. Many fishermen use trolling motors to steady their boat against wind or to slowly cruise exactly where they want to go (hopefully right where the fish are). Normally the trolling motor is attached to the bow of the boat but it can also be attached to the stern. Fishing for bass, for example, means that you will want a trolling motor for fine adjustments to the boat without the noise of the engine because that frightens fish away off. A small pontoon boat with trolling motor is ideal for any fishing expeditions because trolling motor makes navigation easier.
A pontoon boat is your everyday boat but a small pontoon boat with trolling motor is actually a boat powered by electric trolling motor, with an option to paddle, and typically includes a deep cycle lead battery with it. The boat has exceptional stability and calmness in choppy waters and navigates with breeze any waterway. There are some things to know before buying a small pontoon boat with a trolling motor.
Purchasing a Small Pontoon Boat
First, you need to decide what you are going to use your small pontoon boat for. Typically people don’t buy a boat with a trolling motor unless they have one main activity in mind: Fishing! Assuming that you are purchasing a small pontoon boat with a trolling motor for fishing, then there are typically a few different types of small pontoon boats with trolling motors that you can choose from, depending on how portable you need the boat to be when transporting it to the lake, and how much range and stability you need once you are on the lake.
Inflatable One Man Pontoon Fishing Boat With Trolling Motor
Starting at the smallest and lightest end the most portable types of small pontoon boats that can come with a trolling motor include the one man inflatable fishing pontoon boats. These are a great choice if you want to be as portable as possible because most of these boats can fit into the trunk of a car, and some are pretty heavy but with a little sweat and tears you can walk one from your car to your lake by yourself and get fishing on the water in no time. Once you are on the water the trolling motor can get you going quickly since the inflatable boats are relatively light compared to a traditional pontoon boat. Some disadvantages include the risk of developing a leak in the boat and with an inflatable boat (other than a couple of options) you are going to be fishing alone on the boat. Sure you can bring a friend on “another” boat but the majority of these boats are made for a single person. Click this link for a full list of the 10 Best One Man Pontoon Boats or if you are in a rush here are a few of our favorites:
The AQUOS Heavy Duty Inflatable Pontoon Boat is kind of like a hydrid between an inflatable fishing boat and a standard pontoon boat. It comes with a great sturdy chair on a rigid platform as well as a support pole to hold your gear. The difference with a traditional pontoon boat is that the platform is sitting on top of 4 inflatable pontoons. You can easily attach a trolling motor to the bow or stern of the platform and AQUOS even has an option available where you can buy the AQUOS Heavy Duty 7.5 ft Inflatable Boat With a Trolling Motor already included in the package. People who have purchased it in the past say that it’s a great quality and it’s a very nice platform to fish from. Some recommend buying a separate trolling motor that is a 35 lb or 55 lb thrust rather than the standard 20 lb thrust as it gets you around the lake better. Additionally, some of the larger customers (i.e. over 160 pounds) felt a little unstable on the 7.5′ model. Luckily we have just learned that AQUOS is releasing an 8.8′ model and a 10.2′ model that should be more suitable for people over 160 lbs. Trust me I don’t consider 160 lbs “big” either so I definitely have my sights on the 10.2′ model! Please note that although this boat is described as “portable” I wouldn’t plan on hiking it into the mountains or anything soon you can carry it but plan on making multiple trips, although AQUOS is releasing a new “Backpack Series” of boats for 2021 so check them out and see if they are any more portable than the first generation of boats.
Another inflatable small fishing pontoon boat with a trolling motor is the Classic Accessories Colorado Pontoon Boat. This boat is one of our most popular one man fishing pontoon boats and we are ecstatic that it comes with a perfect rear storage rack and mount that is absolutely perfect for a trolling motor and battery. They don’t typically come as a set with a trolling motor but you can purchase whatever you want for a motor anyhow. Most people who own a Classic Accessories Colorado Pontoon Boat absolutely love it. Some feedback from owners are that it is a very well made boat with high quality components. Many people modify the seat to make it into a swivel seat, although we just recently noticed that Classic Accessories came out with another Colorado model that makes a swivel seat optional. It is very portable and holds people up to 400 lbs, so it is quite stable! You may get a little wet in the boat since it’s so close to the water when you are sitting. Overall this is one of the best and portable small pontoon boats that you can get with a trolling motor.
The Sea Eagle FoldCat 375fc is a classic small fishing pontoon boat for either one or two people. It’s got a classic design, and it’s got a nice, stable deck attached to it (similar to the AQUOS design). This boat is a more sturdy and larger than the other small inflatable pontoon boats and you pay a little bit more price for it, but it is definitely made for two people and you will be thankful for the steadiness on the water when you are catching fish out on the lake! The boat comes in a few different packages including oars only, an electric trolling motor (70 lb thrust), or even a 3 hp gas motor if you want to stretch your range as far as you can. Buyers of the Sea Eagle 375fc are impressed with the stability and quality of the boat. Their only complaints are that some of the screws come loose on the seat and the oar holders’ position is a little awkward when fishing but they have found easy fixes for the issues and are generally very happy with the boat.
Mini and Small Pontoon Boats with Trolling Motor
If you want a little more “robust” fishing boat that is made of steel or aluminum instead of inflatable rubber, then there are a number of manufacturers and models available. For a full list of manufacturers please visit our Mini Pontoon Boat Manufacturers article, or if you are in a hurry here are a few of the most popular models:
Pond King has been a mainstay in the mini and small pontoon boat industry since it started in 1995 as a pond management company. They know ponds and it shows in the high quality of their pontoon boats. The Patriot Mini Tow-Man Fishing Pontoon Boat is just one of a number of models that Pond King offers geared toward having a solid but small pontoon boat out on the lake for a great day of fishing. The Patriot Mini Pontoon is built entirely out of aluminum to withstand the elements and has been “modularized” so it can be shipped and assembled easily. It comes equipped with two seats and with a 45 lb trolling motor (or you can buy a motor of your choice). Pond King has a number of excellent models available as a one man or two man small fishing pontoon, but we wanted to spotlight the Patriot specifically because Pond King has an excellent annual program that gives away Patriot boats to veterans. We think that this program is absolutely fantastic and think that it’s a wonderful way to support our wonderful veterans and bring honor and recognition to those who served our country.
The Fun Toons Pro Bass Small Pontoon is a solidly built little pontoon boat that is made for two people. It is built for fishing as it is super stable and has two swivel seats and a rail that extends around the perimeter of the boat. You can choose a trolling motor or a small gas motor to propel the boat.
The Laker 612 Trolling Fisher Pontoon is nearly as “deluxe” as you can get when it comes to small pontoon boats with a trolling motor. The Laker boats are all typically built with square pontoons and all aluminum construction with a “bed liner” floor for excellent durability. The Laker resembles a full-sized pontoon boat with it’s solid rail around the perimeter, canopy, and 4 swivel chairs. It can be propelled with a 55 lb. C2 Minn Kota trolling motor, a 5 hp outboard engine, or up to a 20 hp outboard if you buy an aftermarket bracket for it.
Select a Trolling Motor for your Small Pontoon Boat
After you select your boat model then you should select a trolling motor brand, then a model, and then mounting and other accessories. One detail that could be of importance when picking up the brand is if you already have a fish finder. This is because of the fact that trolling motor and fish finder manufacturers often work together to make their technologies compatible. The first step to determine the model you want is where you want to mount the trolling motor. Your main options are bow, transom (rear), or engine mount. The issue of power is important because pontoon boats are large and do not have the hydrodynamics of a v-hull boat. Speaking of accessories and mounting options, batteries and charger should be in your focus. Contrary to your boat’s engine, the trolling motor is battery powered and does not recharge by running the motor, which means you will need to charge the batteries at home before each trip. The type of battery needed for a trolling motor is a deep cycle battery. The deep cycle battery is aimed for longer battery drains that will often drain the battery entirely. When it comes to charging batteries, you should be sure to get one that is graded for marine conditions, has the connections for the number of batteries you will use, and be sure to get a “smart” charger to preserve the longevity of the battery.
MotorGuide VariMAX 24-Volt Freshwater Hand/Pontoon Mount Trolling Motor is one of the leading brands used for making a small pontoon boat with trolling motor. Key features include 75 lbs., thrust, 50″ shaft, hand-control pontoon, pontoon mount style, precise BluVis integrated speed and battery indicator.
Another good brand of trolling moter to make a small pontoon boat with trolling motor is Minn Kota Terrova 55 Bow-Mount Trolling Motor. Key features are: easy to stow and deploy, universal solar, waterproof, low profile foot pedal, pre-installed i-Pilot gives you great control, two year warranty.