Capt. Ethan Hamrick
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5 Best Trolling Motors for Flats/Bay Boats in 2022

Trolling motors are very helpful tools for avid anglers, giving them the ability to move slowly and quietly through the water without using their big engine. There are many different types of trolling motors made for different kinds of vessels. Today, we’ll discuss the best trolling motors for flats and bay boats used primarily for saltwater fishing.

A typical flats or bay boat is somewhere from 16-24 feet long and made of fiberglass. Anglers should choose their trolling motor based on their boat’s length and weight. The bigger the boat, the more powerful the trolling motor needed.

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra

From my personal experience of using many different types of trolling motors on my flats and bay boats throughout the years, the Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra is the best saltwater trolling motor on the market. It is a little pricy but is an extremely nice piece of equipment that comes with all the bells and whistles a trolling motor could have.

This trolling motor has so many great features, including iPilot, spot lock, autopilot, and a weedless wedge propellor to chop through all types of grass and thick vegetation. Plus, the device comes with a handy remote that can be used to operate the trolling motor from anywhere on the boat.

This 24-volt trolling motor comes in multiple shaft sizes, including 60- and 72-inches and has 80 pounds of thrust, making it powerful enough to navigate a fairly large flats or bay boat. It is an awesome tool that I would highly recommend to any angler with a flats or bay boat.

Minn Kota Riptide Terrova

Another excellent trolling motor is the Minn Kota Riptide Terrova. This device is similar to the Ulterra, just a little less expensive. It comes equipped with iPilot, spot lock, autopilot and a remote for more convenient navigation of the vessel. This motor has a 60-inch shaft, 80 pounds of thrust and runs on 24 volts. It is awesome motor that can help anglers easily and quietly approach fish in shallow water.

Motor Guide Wireless Saltwater Trolling Motor

This is another reliable trolling motor with wireless features, such as anchor mode, autopilot and a handheld remote control. The motor is made with a 60-inch shaft, has 80 pounds of thrust, and runs on 24 volts. It has the power to move most flats and bay boats around very well.

Minn Kota Riptide PowerDrive

The Minn Kota Riptide PowerDrive is perfect for the angler who wants a remote controlled motor but doesn’t require all the extra features. It’s convenient remote control still allows anglers to navigate their vessel from anywhere on board, however, doesn’t come with spot lock, iPilot, or autopilot.

This trolling motor has a 54 inch shaft, 70 pounds of thrust and runs on 24 volts, making it great for slightly smaller vessels that don’t require as much power to move around. The Minn Kota Riptide PowerDrive is a great trolling motor and much less expensive than the previous three on the list.

Minn Kota Riptide Fortrex

The Minn Kota Riptide Fortrex is great for the angler who wants a more traditional hand-controlled trolling motor. This 36-volt trolling motor has a 62-inch shaft and 112 pounds of thrust, making it super powerful and great for larger flats and bay boats. It is a reasonably priced and reliable trolling motor that will help anglers be more stealthy when searching for fish.

Minn Kota Riptide Maxxum

Lastly, the Minn Kota Riptide Maxxum is another hand steer trolling motor. It is basically a smaller version of the Fortrex, equipped with only a 52-inch shaft, 70 pounds of thrust and running on 24 volts, which makes it a great motor for smaller flats and bay boats.

Closing Thoughts

There are a wide variety of trolling motors available to anglers with flats and bay boats. However, its important to know the ones that are high quality and which one is best for your vessel. Choosing the best trolling motor possible that is reliable will save you a lot of money, headache and frustration later down the road.


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