Sea Pro 228 DC

The rare triple play.

I brought the throttle up to 3300 rpm and looked back at the wake, imagining a boarder hopping from one side to the other with about 6' of air underneath him. Then I eased back on the throttle, pulled over to the riverbank, killed the engine, and walked to the bow, where I imagined casting to redfish. Then I sat in the main cockpit and imagined having a picnic on the hook. On a versatile dual console such as the Sea Pro 228 DC, a fishboat with a family plan, all my imaginings could be realities.

For the fishing, start at the transom, where the starboard hatch opens to reveal a removable cast net bucket with a plastic clip to hold it in place. You can use this container for anything, but the smart angler will keep the cast net there at the ready. The transom features a 35-gallon recirculating livewell. It also has the standard four rodholders on the gunwale topsides and an inwale rodrack to port. Two 90-quart, insulated, overboard-draining fishboxes reside under the bow seating.

On the family side, Sea Pro put a utility center along the starboard gunwale, a spot usually reserved for rod racks, with a sink connected to an eight-gallon freshwater system. Next to the sink is a bait prep (or food prep) station with a Starboard plastic cutting surface and a stainless-steel grabhandle. A standard 36-quart cooler resides underneath, though you can opt for a refrigerator. Another family-friendly feature: The port seat folds down into three different positions -- lie back to watch the boarders, face forward, or totally recline to catch some rays.

The insole ski stowage locker is fully finished. A plastic hatch lifts up to let you check the water tank and access the hose. There's a pie hatch for fuel tank access. The head is fully finished with a vinyl headliner. A cargo net on back of the door holds loose items.

On the water the 228 DC produced solid perform-ance numbers with a 225-hp Verado, registering a whisker under 50 mph. The four-stroke engine kept the cockpit quiet at low speeds, allowing passengers to have a conversation. And the 104-gallon fuel tank gives it more range than other family-style boats in the bow-rider and deckboat class.