Apr 23, 2014

Outcast Stealth Pro Vs. the Competition

Going Frameless

When a unique opportunity presents itself take advantage of it. That is the logic I've come to live by. I had already put this trip on the calender. I had recently purchased a new Outcast Stealth Pro to replace my old pontoon. Then opportunity hit! A friend says "I have a boat very similar to the Stealth Pro. Your welcome to borrow it anytime." Hmmmm!
San Juan River in New Mexico looks like a great place to give these boats a test drive in the middle of March. Blue Skies and Sunshine feels real good but don't get the wrong impression...still cold here especially mornings. Much time was spent de-icing fly rod guides. We arrived on a Monday afternoon and proceeded to walk and wade for the remaining daylight and didn't give up until it was almost too dark to fish which gave us just enough time to get back to the truck. The wind was howling and casting was difficult. I was worried that the wind would continue through the next day, the first of two planned float days.

Mike in the Stealth Pro at ET Rock
Tuesday came as expected with strong winds blowing straight up the canyon. This will be a good test as we push these boats downriver. This time of year flow is still at a winter minimum so not much help from current. The Stealth Pro rowed incredibly smooth with easy entry and exit of the oars. Outcast did a great job utilizing a long thinner oar blade along with a very smooth pivoting oar lock design. This made it really enjoyable to row. Our competitors boat had a lot of slack and play in the oar system and made it clunky on the water. The problem may have also been amplified by lesser quality oars.

We pushed through a lot of water that first float day. Many of these pools are like small lakes. Much of this water could only be fished from some type of craft. We didn't spend much time fishing it because we really were only equipped to swing or strip streamers and this is some water that you really would want some Outcast Kick Fins to control your position. Pictured above is rock commonly called ET Rock and it marks the end of a long deep bend I believe is referred to as Baetis Bend. The whole pool appears to be next to impossible to walk and wade. I'm sure this could be home to some unbelievable size trout. This area could find use with some of those Rio Lake Lines we just posted about. But on this day we are searching for swing water. More about the San Juan on another day, let's get back to talking about the boat.

This should swing
Integrated Gear System

Integrated Gear System

 A really cool feature of the Outcast Stealth Pro is the ability to add accessories with the Integrated Gear System (IGSystem). The orange patches you see are like sleeves affixed to the outer shell and allow the user to attach a variety of things including Scotty rod holders, anchor systems and side bags. The Stealth Pro comes standard with one side pocket bag. All of these accessories can be purchased from us. The mounts that slide into the sleeve have a common bolt pattern that relates to all Scotty accessories.  This makes many accessories pretty universal to the Stealth Pro. No more strap-on accessories to deal with. I'm going to add another side pocket bag to mine. The Stealth Pro comes with one side pocket and two mounting sleeves, one on each side of the boat. Accessories can be mounted in three different positions. To re-position the mounting sleeve just air down the pontoon and use a blunt object to slide the sleeve into a different position. I used an eraser end of a pencil and it worked just fine.

Simple Installation
Secured without straps
The provided thumb fasteners make for easy attachment and removal of side pocket. The side pockets gives you drink holders on each end as well as stuff pockets and a large main pocket.

Secure some items that could get you out of a jam

It's good to have a few items on hand especially for 2-3 day floats. I use the one side pocket just for these little extras. I carry a few tools just in case I would have to change out an oar lock. An extra one is provided with your Stealth Pro purchase. Outcast also provides an emergency patch. Zip-ties, rope and duct tape round out my bag of "what if" supplies.
I doubt if I will ever need any of this stuff but the first rule in boating is to be prepared. While "up a creek without a paddle" might be a bad situation you'd still be better off than "down a river with one oar."

Safety First

Don't forget these items
Never float without your K-Pump
I wanted a way to secure my K-Pump without taking up valuable gear space. I acquired a couple extra mounting sleeves and inserted one in the back space normally reserved for an anchor. While searching through a bin of old boat parts I've collected over the years I found some old rod holder parts. The bolt pattern is an exact match. Most rod holder accessories today use the same bolt pattern. Using the mount as a clamp I secured the K-Pump stuff sack. While at it I added a grab handle for easy dragging. If you are going to do your own customizing be sure to pay attention to bolt length. The bolts I had were just perfect as long as I put a washer under them.

Ready for gear
Outcast has outfitted the Stealth Pro with many tie down loops. I also added some mounts to the side locations just to give me more tie-down spots.


Vs. the Competitor

After two full days of floating both Mike and I agreed we liked the Outcast Stealth Pro boat the best. Only minor differences separated the two boats. The most obvious was the quality of oars. An oar upgrade to our competitors boat would really make a big difference. Next the competitor's oar locks themselves had a lot of play in them. The footrest came in third of dislikes and again it was the lose insecure feeling it gave us. Last of our dislikes was the fact that our competitors boat does not use an internal bladder. While no difference is detected from a lack of bladder it just gives me a more secure feeling knowing that what holds the air in the Outcast Stealth Pro is protected inside a tough outer shell.
Outcast Stealth Pro Flattens the Competition
I really love the freedom of floating

Features -

  • Inflated Size: 8' x 57" 
  • Tube Diameter: 16.25" 
  • Fabric: 500 pvc 
  • Material Weight: 30 oz. 
  • AireCell Material: Urethane 
  • Seam Construction: Welded 
  • Warranty: 5 Yrs
  • Valve Type: Summit II 
  • Weight: 35 lbs. 
  • Load Capacity: 450 lbs.
  • Frame: NONE 
  • Anchor System: IGSystem 
  • Oar Type: 5' 2-piece


Frame-less pontoon boats are not completely new on the scene. The Outcast's little cousin the Fishcat Scout has been out for over a year and has proven to be very popular and the competitors boat has been out for at least a couple of years. I had studied all the current frame-less boats available and as loyal customer of Outcast I decided to go with a new Stealth Pro. I couldn't be happier and look forward to all the great floats I plan to use this on.

For More information on Pontoon Boats visit our Buyers Guide


Gorge Fly Shop Internet Sales Manager | Product Specialist

"Fly Fish the World with Us"

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