South Carolina-based Sea Hunt Boats set its Gamefish 27 apart by moving the center console farther forward and designing an elaborate seating pod, which includes a pair of posh helm seats with armrests and flip-up bolsters, plus aft-facing “mezzanine” seating, a 40-gallon divided livewell, tackle storage lockers on both sides, four rod holders and a robust grab rail for standing passengers.
I like the features, but not the way the pod encroaches on the aft cockpit. On the other hand, I am impressed with the additional 30-gallon livewell on the port side of the transom bulkhead, as well as the transom door permitting easy access to the integral swim platform. A flip-up bench seat across the inside of the transom bulkhead and a seat forward of the console offer plenty of places for the crew to rest their backs.
The divided bow platform is extremely elevated, great for fighting fish around the bow and throwing a cast net. It also allows for a pair of deep storage compartments, but not much freeboard forward, so you will want to keep the kids off the foredeck in rough conditions.
With cubbyholes, a pair of drink holders and a glove box to stash your tchotchkes, the center console is a captain’s dream. An angled footrest maximizes the ergonomics of the helm seats when the bolsters are up. (A second fold-down footrest on the seat pod adds comfort when the bolsters are down.) A huge, vertical flat panel will easily accommodate a pair of flush-mounted 12-inch multifunction displays. A tilt-and-lock helm controls the SeaStar Solutions power-assist hydraulic steering system. Below the helm is a head compartment with a permanent privy and holding tank as standard equipment.
Also standard is the hardtop with built-in electronics box, LED dome lights, LED spreader lights and integral stereo speakers, as well as four rod holders. It includes mounting plates in case you want to add outriggers to the top.
With a pair of Yamaha’s new F200 four-cylinder outboards, the Sea Hunt Gamefish 27 vaulted from 0 to 30 mph in 7.5 seconds. The 60-degree forward entry knifed smoothly through the capping 2-footers on test day, and the hull came about confidently at speed without sliding or tripping. With the console-forward layout, a smooth ride will be particularly important on this boat.
Comparable model: Scout 275 XSF