Well, we haven’t seen one of these yet and it’s kind of hard to know if we should place this boat with the fishing models, or on the raft page. Gumotex, the manufacturer of the Innova line, has had what we would call non-U.S. market boats over the years that Innova had declined to bring in. Some were whitewater boats that were frankly pretty inferior to most of the popular brands found here in the States. Others simply had unusual designs that did well in Europe but not necessarily here. The new Alfonso, and the kayak style Halibut from Innova (see our solo touring page or the fishing page), may do very well with the large fly fishing market here. Time will tell.
The Alfonso, at four feet wide, is more of a cross between an inflatable canoe and a narrow raft, and it has the basic configuration of a marine style Zodiac craft, with a small rigid transom on the back. One big advantage of the Alfonso is it’s small folded size – a little more than a foot thick by two feet by 28”. So transport certainly does not require a trailer, as is often the case with the most traditional marine inflatables that are as long as this one. There is also an oversize Innova drybag – carry bag included for storage and hauling. When the boat is unpacked, you have an expedition size drybag for overnight trips.
This angler’s inflatable is 14’ in length and weighs 75 pounds, which includes four skidguard boards; one between the seats, one under each seat, and a larger floor board for standing. The seats are inflatable, and the rear sides of the backrest each have rod holders. There is an additional Cannon rod holder to mount on the center board between the seats. There are also a pair of rubber molded oarlock holders near the stern, intended for the rear occupant to use. The oars are not included but any basic one piece or take-apart set in the 7’ to 8’ range will work.
It is mandatory to use a pump – not your mouth – to fully inflate the seats if you expect proper back support. There are a number of pump options, but given the size of this craft we would advise something larger than a Bravo foot pump – which is what we usually suggest with the smaller Innova kayaks. With this big boy, you need to move a bit more air. One of our Salamander tall 4” barrel pumps might work well.
One detail that is very important for you to understand is that in most states marine style transom boats require registration, so please be clear on that before you order an Alfonso.
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