Need a boat that’s small enough to be operated single-handed but big enough to venture offshore? Of course you do. But how do you convince your better half of this need? Well, it’s a little easier if that boat has a standup head and a full galley, including a Norcold refrigerator, Kenyon alcohol stove, and Samsung microwave. Welcome the Century 2900 Walkaround to the rescue.
Fear not, this is still a fishboat. The 45-gallon aerated livewell in the center of the transom has a clear Plexiglas window in the front, so you can keep an eye on the number and condition of your baits. Twin 45-gallon fishboxes are macerator equipped and have struts on the hatches, making it easy to make deposits and withdrawals. There’s a bait rigging station with a cutting board, and coaming bolsters surround the cockpit. But the most impressive fishing feature is fuel capacity: With 250 gallons belowdecks, you can take the 2900 WA to the edge of the continental shelf, troll for hours, and return with plenty of gas to spare.
Sometimes walkarounds in this size range are lethargic, but rigged with our test boat’s pair of 250-hp Yamaha outboards, the 2900 WA is impressively quick, easily topping 52 mph. And at 23 degrees, the deadrise is sharp enough to ride soft in rough water. There’s a tradeoff here, however; when I put the 2900 WA into a sharp emergency turn, it heeled over pretty far. Fortunately, this is a tendency you won’t notice under normal conditions, and the trim tabs can be used to level the boat when beam-sea conditions create a lean. Pro-Line’s 28 WA ($58,000 without power), which is 8″ wider and 1,200 pounds heavier, has 18 degrees of deadrise.
The dual padded seat up forward will be a popular spot for lounging at idle. The anchor locker hatch up there is rather narrow, however, at just 5 1/2″ wide, which could make it tough to sort out a tangle in the rode. Otherwise, it’s hard to find anything to complain about. Construction is all composites, with stringers made of a matrix of foam and fiberglass and a transom formed of high-density urethane and fiberglass. The gel coat sports a deep shine, and the hullsides are as smooth as the rear panels on a Cadillac. Each 10″ cleat is backed by aluminum plates, and electrical connections are all shrink-wrapped.
LAST WORD. Seaworthy enough to chase tuna 50 miles out and comfortable enough for the cruising family to gunkhole its way through the summer.
LOA………29’4″ ** **
Displacement (lbs., approx.) ………5,300 ** **
Transom deadrise…23° ** **
Bridge clearance…..6’10” ** **
Minimum cockpit depth ………2’2″ ** **
Max. cabin headroom…..6’2″ ****
Fuel capacity (gal.)…250 ****
Water capacity (gal.) ……….20 ****
Price (w/o power) ………$70,193 ****
Price (w/test power) ………$101,600 ****
STANDARD POWER: None. ****
OPTIONAL POWER: Twin Yamaha outboards to 500 hp total.
TEST BOAT POWER: Twin 250-hp Yamaha EFI V-6 outboards with 191″ cid, 3.54″ bore x 3.23″ stroke, swinging 14 7/8″ x 21″ three-bladed ss props through 1.81:1 reductions.
STANDARD EQUIPMENT (major items): Norcold refrigerator; Samsung microwave; Kenyon alcohol stove; faux-granite countertops; head w/shower; ss boarding ladder; 45-gal. aerated livewell; cockpit bolsters; trim tabs; bow pulpit w/anchor roller; integrated swim platform.