March 25, 2012
Florida Sportsman magazine joined up with Lake & Bay's do-it-all Steve Dupper to test out their Boca Grande 21. Dupper emphasized key improvements that make this new entry from a company known for top-end speed more fishermen friendly.
Adding 2.5 degrees in deadrise from older Boca Grande models, the 21-footer now has a better holeshot and increased performance in rough water. A 12-inch jackplate is no longer necessary, and the recommended 6-inch plate helps lower weight, says Dupper. Trim tabs are not necessary for the Boca Grande 21 hull, though there is a recessed area for anglers who want to add them.
Poling and casting platforms are mounted with quick release disconnects. You can literally remove the poling platform if you don't intend to use it. (It's best to remove the platforms, if desired, before getting on the water.) Storage hatches feature deep gutters to keep water out, and added insulation muffles normal sound associated with hatches. Walking on the hatches, and even closing the hatches, makes minimal noise.
The Lake & Bay Boca Grande 21
includes a non-skid, self-bailing cockpit, drain channels around hatches, a fully finished storage compartment beneath driver and passenger seats, and recessed aluminum bases for flush-mounting chairs and platforms. Standard options include two 1,000 gph bilge pumps, livewell and release well, tilt hydraulic steering with Edson wheel, hydraulic jack plate, and 82-pound thrust MotorGuide trolling motor. Beam is 7 feet, 9 inches; weight is 950 pounds; maximum horsepower is 300; and fuel capacity is 60 gallons. All Lake & Bay boats feature hand-laid composite construction and stainless steel hardware. Base price with Mercury 250 Pro XS and trailer is $55,064.
Legendary Lake & Bay
1100 Industrial Way East
Sebring, Florida 33870
Length: 21 feet
Beam: 7 feet, 9 inches
Draft: 10 inches
Max horsepower: 300 hp
Fuel capacity: 60 gallons
Dry Weight: 950 pounds
Deadrise: 15 degrees
Baitwell: 35 gallons
Steve Dupper motors away from the dock on the St. Lucie River. The Boca Grande 21 has plenty of flat deck space for fishing.
Casting platform and trolling motor at the bow. At top, anchor locker opens starboard, away from the trolling motor. Forward storage hatch features a drain channel which leads water toward self-bailing cockpit.
Shoes off to keep the boat clean, Steve unscrews the casting platform mounts for removal.
A close-up look at the mounting bracket. Four screws for each bracket.
Anchor locker opened and ready for use. Notice the three flush mounts where the platform sits.
Steve behind the side console, checking his digital gauges. He sits in one of two single seats; a bench seat is available. Upfront, console seat doubles as a cooler.
A great view of the cockpit. Cooler slides out of place and can be removed to make space. The entire cockpit is self-bailing, plus it's covered in non-skid grip. Two rod holders adorn the side-console hatch.
Side-console seat opens to an oversize cooler.
Console hatch opens for easy access to wiring and batteries.
Rod storage opened on the port side, showing sound muffling insulation. A grab rail, left, offers support for anglers when traveling at high speeds.
A shot of the huge storage compartment under the driver's seat.
A view of the stern casting deck. Port and starboard hatches double as coolers or storage, and can be plumbed for livewells. That might not be necessary with the 35-gallon center livewell that has no corners and an impressive re-circulation system.
Many holes make up the proprietary livewell re-circulation system. Plus, there's two ways to open the livewell—just the lid or the entire hatch.
Circulating well in action. At close to 35 gallons, there's plenty of room for whitebait, finger mullet and threadfins.
A shot of the poling platform that can be entirely removed. This boat was rigged with Power-Pole and Mercury OptiMax Pro XS 250. Hatch opens to the bilge compartment.
Release well can be used for tournament fish, cooler or storage.
A close-up of the hatch drain channel that leads water overboard, away from the compartment.
Storage hatch—gutter keeps the water out; all that foam padding keeps this boat very quiet.
A look at the hatch's foam edging. Two grooves fit snug against the deck's surface.
This boat can reach speeds close to 80 m.p.h. rigged with a Mercury OptiMax Pro XS 250. In this photo Steve was traveling at much slower speeds due to speed limitations in the channel. Notice most of the hull out of the water, sitting on the proprietary Lake & Bay hull “pad.” When traveling at fast speeds, it's wise to wear a PFD, and the driver should always have the kill switch wrapped around his wrist.
Florida Sportsman Classics, June 2010
This boat was rigged with Lenco trim tabs and a Bob's Machine hydraulic jackplate.