An Inshore Rocket Launcher?Boat Outfitters Staff December 02, 2022 5 min read
Innovative thinking from a Keys guide leads to a new Boat Outfitters designRenowned Florida Keys guide Capt. Greg Poland runs mainly inshore charters but has done his share of offshore fishing, too — particularly kite fishing for sailfish. So he knows how a dedicated rocket launcher can streamline the game by positioning multiple rods in one location. Even with half a dozen kite lines out, a single crew member can instantly reach any one of them when the bite comes.
But it wasn’t until his dock neighbors in Islamorada — a tournament sailfish crew on the Contender 44ST Hillbilly Deluxe — started using a removable rocket launcher with integrated tackle trays and drink holders that the light bulb went off for Poland. Why couldn’t the same basic idea work inshore? After all, his charter anglers frequently fished two or even three rods each when live-baiting tarpon and snook around the bridges and in the backcountry.
"An inshore adaptation of the rocket launcher idea would put all those rods at the fingertips of anglers on his forward casting deck and save them having to reach down and grab a rod from a flush-mount holder at their feet when a bite came. "
An inshore adaptation of the rocket launcher idea, Poland thought, would put all those rods at the fingertips of anglers on his forward casting deck and save them having to reach down and grab a rod from a flush-mount holder at their feet when a bite came. Additionally, if the angler was holding a water bottle, Yeti or other beverage, an integrated drink holder would keep them from having to bend down and set it on deck — where it often ended up spilling anyway during the ensuing fight. All of which, he reasoned, should lead to more hookups.
So Poland took some pictures of his neighbor’s removable rocket launcher and sent them to Boat Outfitters — who he’d worked with on several other projects — to see what they could come up with for his charter boat, a Contender 25 Bay.
"Poland and the Boat Outfitters team came up with a three-rod pedestal holder that drops into a 0˚ flush-mount rod holder and positions rods at comfortable height for anglers on the casting deck. "
After a few iterations, he and the Boat Outfitters design team arrived at a three-rod pedestal holder that drops into a 0˚ flush-mount rod holder and positions rods at a comfortable height both for anglers on the casting deck and anglers in the cockpit. The rod tubes themselves are vertical — rather than angled outward like a typical kite fishing cluster — so that the pedestal can be used anywhere on the boat and at any angle without rods leaning inboard. A small Starboard tray with two drink holders and a pliers slot can be easily removed if not needed.
Poland says the unique pedestal holder is useful not just for holding rods while actively fishing but also serves as a great way for young kids to reel in fish that are too strong for them to fight while holding the rod themselves. The holder places the reel at a perfect height for kids to crank while keeping the rod secure. It also comes in handy on occasion as a boarding aid for guests who need to steady themselves while stepping from dock to boat, Poland says.
Normally, Poland uses the pedestal rod holder in one of two 0˚ rod holders near the bow, but for certain situations he uses it on the aft deck in one of another pair of 0˚ rod holders originally installed to hold a removable backrest.
The new pedestal holder complements a pair of Triple Offset Rod Holders, which Poland also had a hand in designing. The offset holders are used in a variety of ways around the boat, including for additional rod storage aft while running. A removable cutting board/rigging traythat mounts to the offset rod holders is interchangeable with the Starboard tray that mounts to the new pedestal rod holder, and Poland often uses it to add extra drink holders to his leaning post when needed.
The removable Starboard tray that is part of the new pedestal rod holder can also be attached to Poland’s Triple Offset Rod Holders to provide extra places in the cockpit for drinks.
We love hearing ideas and suggestions from our customers — pro anglers and weekend warriors alike. Capt. Poland’s new triple pedestal rod holder, which we recently added to our catalog, is just one of dozens of innovative products that grew out of collaborations between our customers and our design team.
It's going to start gettingCOLD where you live, so why not plan a trip to come to islamorada to catch a fish or watch a Sunset?
Winter is on the way, so why not plan a trip to Sunny South Florida? The weather is perfect and I have some open dates to get you out on the water. Below is a photo from a recent trip to the backcountry, we were using live pinfish & pilchards and a 15lb spin rod spooled with beaded line and a fluorocarbon leader about the length of the rod.
I spoke to a fishing guide in Montanna this afternoon after my charter and he told me Summer is officially over because it snowed on him today, that's so hard to believe because we are still hiding under the Bimini Top to get outa the sun! The fishing here in islamorada has been pretty good with enough snapper to make a meal off a 1/2 day charter or if you slide into the backcountry you can find a snook or two! If you are looking to get out give me a call and lets get you out on the h20.
If your going to be in Islamorada lets get out for a 1/2 day morning charter, the fishing is red hot in the backcountry or we can catch you a Mahi Mahi!
If you want a shirt from my boat go over to www.mojosportswearcompany.com and search Greg Poland
I have to say I have not tried Bonefishing in about 5 years sense I sold my Flats Skiff, but an old client came to town and said he wanted to give it a shot so we did and much to my surprise we caught quite a few. I wanted to see if it was a fluke so I talked my next client into giving it a shot, & the next guy as well and I am happy to report we have been catching them regularly! They are not big ones like I use to chars, but they are bonefish and they still pull out a lot of drag and put a smily on my anglers face, if you would like to give it a try contact me and lets go catch a few!
Just got off the water from a bottom fishing trip and its time to pack a bag for the Miami Boat Show, if your in the area come see me at the Sirus XM booth in the electronicks area or stop by Contender to say hello...
New GTB Edition Contender Bay Boat is on the water & I would love to get you and your family out on it!
Weather your looking for a suntan or to get outs the sun I have you covered with a retractible sunshade on the new boat! If your going to be in Islamorada give me a call and lets get you out on the water.
Check back for the latest inshore and offshore fishing report in the Islamorada area.