Ask around, do a little research and you’ll likely find that the question “what’s the best vehicle for fly fishing” is often answered “truck.”
But I’m still
paying into social security so others can fly fish when they want a working stiff. I need transportation that is, first and foremost, reliable, and just as important, economical. I have to spend money on gas to make money, and the less I spend upfront the better.
During better weather, the Honda CB750 and its 45+ miles per gallon is a fine option. But it’s difficult to load the necessary fly fishing gear, and the cooler of post-fishing beer, on a motorcycle. I’ve tried.
Being a bit obsessive about conducting research on anything that will cost more than $50, I’ve been thinking — probably too much according to those around me — about the vehicle that, in about 1½ to 2 years, will replace my current 2003 Honda Accord. Since I’ll likely buy a certified pre-owned car, it’s going to be something currently on the market. My current car gets 30 to 32 mpg most of the time, and on long trips to fishing venues, I’ve seen 34+ mpg. But over 80% of my driving is commuting to and from work.
I’ve debated the merits of various models, including sport utility vehicles and all-wheel-drive cars. A hybrid is out of the question; too heavy and not enough clearance for the occasional Forest Service road. Subaru is a commonly offered up make as an all-encompassing solution. But I’ve noticed two things: most Subaru owners talk about the sportiness of the ride, the go-almost-anywhere capability, but rarely praise their cars’ mpg, and it seems to be a roll of the dice when it comes to build quality. That might be said about any make, but that’s my experience.
Despite the fact that I’ve been a Honda owner for well over 20 years, I opened up my consideration to other options, particularly now that the mpg on midsize sedans is edging up.
But, and a bit ironically, it’s fly fishing that helped firmed up my decision. At least for now.
I’ve driven my Honda on a good many, only slightly improved, Forest Service roads. Sometimes for miles, over the relatively soft dirt along the Upper Owens River, for example, or over rocks on my way to the Little Walker River, and on washboard roads in the hills behind the cabin.
Still, the doggone car doesn’t squeak or rattle.
I’m hoping this will still hold true for my next car, until that someday when I can justify a dedicated fishing truck.
October 19, 2012 at 7:47 pm
I like my front wheel drive Mercury Mariner. Suv comfort, good gas mileage and plenty of storage.