Fish and Ski boats are great for active families that want to do more than fish.  Walleye boats are ideal for avid anglers in northern waterways.  If you are in the market for one of these, BoaterInput can help you with your search.  We polled current owners to find out which brands offer the best Fish and Ski boats or Walleye Boats based on their experience.

But first, let’s distinguish these two types since Fiberglass Fish and Ski boats and Walleye Boats (also known as Multispecies boats) look very much alike. Both have front and rear casting decks, a full windshield and at least two rows of seats in the main cockpit area. However, Walleye boats tend to have a deeper hull and higher gunnel – good for northern waterways. Fish and Skis, on the other hand, more closely resemble bass boats and may be better suited for bass fishing or navigating shallow areas. Both types are generally well equipped for fishing and watersports activities.


Though this is a relatively small boating segment, we received feedback from 55 owners.  Below is a summary of the best Fish and Ski boats and Walleye boats according to current owners.


FISH AND SKI/WALLEYE BOATS % Selecting in Top 3 Favorite Brand
Ranger 66% 50%
Skeeter 38% 16%
Triton 34% 6%
Stratos 24% 8%
Lund (Fiberglass) 16% 2%
Nitro 12% 6%
Warrior 12% 0%
Yar-Craft 12% 0%
  1. Ranger

The Ranger brand is known for quality and their Walleye and fish ‘n ski models are no exception. Besides their solid construction, they are regarded as comfortable, safe and having a good resale value. Representative comments regarding why many consider Ranger one of the best Fish and Ski boats or best walleye boats…

…I have experienced all sorts of weather and waters in my Rangers and know firsthand how sturdy and safe and reliable they (Ranger) are.

John E., Mannford, OK
  • “I feel that Ranger is the best made boat available with its amount of floatation built into the boat.” (Joe N., Sugar Land, TX)
  • “I have owned more than one Ranger boat, although the Triton is well constructed and possibly as sturdy and reliable as the Ranger, I have experienced all sorts of weather and waters in my Rangers and know firsthand how sturdy and safe and reliable they are.” (John E., Mannford, OK)
  • “Been in many and now own one and I say the handling and comfort of it is perfect for what I use it for” (Jack B., Green Bay, WI)
  • “Quality built. Resale value. Reputation of brand. Proven reliability and ride.” (anonymous)
  • “Quality, finish, features, resale value.” (Steve E., Apple Valley, MN)
  • “Best boat out there, plus great resale!” (Ed T., Rush City, MN)
  1. Skeeter

As the second most popular choice, Skeeter also has a reputation for being well built. They are also known for their ride/performance and being less “pricey” than a Ranger making them an excellent value.  Because they are owned by Yamaha, Skeeters are exclusively packaged with Yamaha engines which is fine with many boaters but unacceptable to some.

  • “My current Skeeter is an extremely well built boat and out performs all of the other boats I have owned.” (anonymous)
  • “Value for price point.” (anonymous)
  • “I have found Skeeter knows how to build a great walleye fishing boat.” (Charles P., Bismarck, ND)
  • “Great boat, rides well, dependable. Great value.” (Diane W., Coon Rapids, MN)
  1. Other Brands (Triton, Nitro)

Because of the limited sample size of Walleye/fish and ski owners, we cannot say reliably why some preferred other brands. However, for Nitro, price appears to be a key factor whereas prior experience and value were mentioned by those favoring Triton.

Concluding Thoughts

Regarding who makes the best fish and ski boats, the answer from boat owners was pretty clear.  If you are looking for a top-of-the-line product in terms of quality and comfort, then Ranger may be your best choice. On the other hand, if you are more concerned about ride/performance and want to save a few bucks, then take a close look at Skeeter or perhaps Triton. But if your budget is more limited, consider a Nitro or maybe even a newer model used boat.

To help you shop for a fiberglass multispecies or fish ‘n ski boat, check out our “Boat Buyer’s Guide: Fish N Skis and Multispecies boats” or go to our comprehensive manufacturer directory for links to all the major brands.

Jerry Mona - BoaterInput

About the author

Jerry Mona is a long-time boating industry insider, research expert and avid boater and angler. He began his research career with the Coca-Cola Company, Foods Division, where he learned research from some of the best in the business. In 1991, he left Coca Cola Foods to follow his passion for the water to head up the research function at Mercury Marine. After climbing the ranks within Mercury and later at the parent company, Brunswick, Jerry left Corporate America in 2000 to launch his own company – Left Brain Marketing, Inc., a research firm specializing in the boating industry and outdoor recreation.

Over the past 20+ years, he has helped leading organizations such as Mercury, Brunswick, White River Marine Group (Tracker, Sun Tracker, Nitro, Mako, Regency, Tahoe), Polaris (Bennington, Hurricane), the National Marine Manufacturers Association, Discover Boating, the Marine Retailers Association of America, the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation ( and others to better understand the needs and wants of boaters like you. Widely recognized as the leading research expert with boaters, Jerry has conducted hundreds of studies and has received responses from over 350,000 boater participants since launching his firm.

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