Fishing can be quite exciting if you have caught something, but if you’re in the waiting game, you might get bored to death or fall asleep while sleeping. Therefore, while you are waiting for a “bite,” you should bring a couple of stuff with you on your fishing trip that could help prevent or avoid boredom.
You can either bring a portable T.V, remote-controlled toys like an RC boat, drone (if you have one), a fishing kayak, fishing float tubes, and maybe a cooler packed with beers inside.
Learn more about fishing rods: Best Ultralight Fishing Rods
A lot of beginners and seasoned anglers cannot afford a new kayak for fishing, so most of them go for a fishing float tube as an alternative, and today, we are going to show you some of the best fishing float tubes in the market.
10Cumberland Fishing Float Tube
The Cumberland fishing float tube is a new inflatable floating tube that includes an adjustable shoulder to be carried easily. So, if you are looking for a portable fishing float tube, this product from Classic Accessories would be the best option that you could choose from. The float tube comes with a hydrodynamic hull shape to provide you smooth steering and tracking.
And for a better fishing experience, the float tube comes with a couple of fishing rod holders for your convenience. With its top-notch comfort due to its seat that is thickly padded along with an adjustable backrest, you would surely enjoy fishing for a whole day without getting bored or uncomfortable.
9Teton Inflatable Float Tube
For those who are on a budget that couldn’t afford Cumberland, then you could go for their affordable version, which is the Teton Inflatable Float Tube. Aside from being cheaper than Cumberland, it’s also designed simply but durable and reliable enough to be used for fishing.
Despite being cheaper than the previous product, it still comes with a comfortable backrest that is perfect for a long fishing trip. It doesn’t include any fancy features like an adjustable backrest, and it’s only a primary float tube for beginners who can’t afford to buy an expensive kayak or modernized float tube.
8Caddis Sports Premier Float Tube
This is a heavy-duty float tube that somewhat resembles a banana boat due to its color and shape. With its bright color, it will keep you safe from getting hit by high-speed boaters. This float tube from Caddis is made with high-quality materials, giving it a heavy-duty feature as well as a ripstop fabric on its top.
It also comes with a front-end and tarpaulin bottom for overall toughness. Another feature that it has is its backrest and seat are foamed and padded to ensure comfortability. Besides, the backrest comes with an adjustable strap, so that you can adjust it to the position you want. It also comes with a fish tray with a ruler, but you’ll have to add a couple of rod holders as the float tube doesn’t have it.
7Outcast Fish Float Tube
This Fishcat float tube from Outcast comes in a teardrop style and with basic features only, so this product mostly recommended for beginners. It can be used on other bodies o water, but it works best on a lake. And aside from fishing, you can also use the tube for other recreational purposes, which includes swimming in a pool.
The best part of this product is its comfortability that provides long hours of comfort. Men who love to sit above the water in a high place while fishing would surely enjoy this product from Outcast. Also, you can comfortably sit higher than the water level, allowing you to cast as a professional angler. It comes with two zippered pockets to be able to keep your gears and equipment.
6Caddis Sports Pro Float Tube
Coming in with a low price is the Caddis Sports Pro that is a low-riding float tube. This is quite similar to the Caddis Premier, but the Pro version is a bit lower when ridden and more stable when used on the water. It also puts you a bit closer to the water, allowing you to double-check your waders anytime.
However, by being the budget version of the other Caddis models, it did keep its D rings to allow you to use the shoulder straps, but it loses its rod holders, which is kind of a bummer when you consider its usefulness. If you need to use a rod holder when fishing, you can invest in a rod holder that you can strap around the float’s pontoon inflates.
5Outcast Fat Cat Float Tube
If you are a professional fisherman that loves to spend tons of hours on the water, then you should consider checking out this Fat Cat float tube form Outcast, this float tube isn’t called fat for no reason. The float tube sits about 13 inches high and about 64-inch long and 45-inch wide. Weighing around 18 pounds, it makes it easy to carry it in and out of hard-to-reach places.
Aside from portability, it also comes with several D-rings, which is very reliable when fishing for a long time. When it comes to searching for the best and top-quality float tubes in the market, Outcast makes one of the best products. In fact, their Fat Cat float tube version is the base model. Instead of using foam for comfortability, it uses inflatable padding, which is very suitable as you’ll be using the float tube on the water.
4Togiak Fishing Float Tube
This is a pontoon styled fishing float tube that is made by Classic Accessories. It comes with a high back stadium seat that allows you to sit high above the water. For serious or professional anglers, they would surely love this product because of its adjustable backrest that provides extra support and comfort. Its hydrodynamic hull can offer you with good steering and tracking.
On the armrest, it has two storages and multiple pockets where you can keep your gears and equipment safely to prevent it from falling into the water. The flat zip and small mesh pockets can be used to keep your smaller stuff like snacks, keys, phones, and others. And if you are wondering if it has a rod holder, it has a horizontal rod holder that can hold your fishing rods when waiting for a bite.
3Bighorn Fishing Float Tube
This is another U-shaped fishing float tube from Classic Accessories. This specific float tube is also very similar to the Gunnison and Teton models. Like the other Classic Accessories models, this float tube comes with additional zippered compartments for reliable storage. This model’s rated capacity is about 350 pounds.
Most fishermen who have bought and used this product said that they love the large size of the product, as it is roomy and straightforward to get on and off of it. However, some customers have complained about the stripping apron’s Velcro patches because they were inadequate. But all-in-all, this is a pretty good option for professional fishermen and other fishing enthusiasts.
2Caddis Wyoming Float Tube
This is another option that you can choose from among the Caddis float tube products. It has a excellent U-shape design that is designed to be used on the waters. This model’s shape and size can help enhance its stability and maneuverability when in the water, so if you tend to move from one spot to another, you can consider getting this product from Caddis.
Aside from stability and easy to maneuver, it also comes in a large apartment where you can store your gears and other stuff, a fly patch holder, a stripping apron, and a portable printed ruler to allow you to measure how long is the fish you have caught. And since this is inflatable, it makes it a very compact item as you can easily inflate and deflate it before and after fishing.
1Outcast Prowler Fishing Float Tube
Unlike some of the other float tubes in the market that let you sit on the water, with the Outcast Prowler, you would be able to sit in a dry and comfortable way as Prowler’s inflatable floor allows you to sit above the water. This way, it would ensure that you’ll have a drier trip on the water while fishing or waiting for a bite.
Aside from keeping you off the water, sitting above the water can allow you to make an easier fish-spotting, as well as enhances your casting distance. At a 325 pounds weight capacity, the float tube is considered to be heavy-duty, making it ideal for tall and heavy fishermen. One of its useful features is its stripping apron allows height adjustment for a customized fit.
Fishing Float Tubes Buying Guide
Now that we’re through with the list of best float tubes in the market, we will now move on to the buying guide on how you can choose the right product for your fishing trip. So, what exactly is a float tube? This is small, inflatable lightweight equipment that is used for fishing or recreational purposes. A lot of anglers love this product due to its affordability and portability.
Before, float tubes are commonly found in doughnut shapes, but now they are available in several other shapes. The most common shape today is the U-shaped float tubes. Let’s see what the other shapes are below:
Various Float Shapes
As we have mentioned earlier, modernized float tubes now come in different shapes and sizes. However, only four of them are quite popular with fishing enthusiasts and anglers. Below are the four famous shapes of float tubes in the market:
U-Shaped Float Tubes
This type of float tube is the most popular shape option among anglers and fishing enthusiasts, as they are much easier to use compared to the other shape options. The rider would face the open portion of the float tube, making it essential to use a fin to maneuver the float tube easily.
Aside from using fins, the open portion of the float tube allows the users to get in and out of the float easily. However, the only downside of this type of float tube is its back support is usually inflatable, so some of you might not feel comfortable with the extra softness of the backrest.
Round-Shaped Float Tubes
Round tubes used to be the most common shape for the fishing float tubes, but today, there are now various options. But like any other item, round-shaped float tubes also have their own benefits and downsides. Rounded float tubes are very affordable, making it suitable for beginners and those who are on a budget.
However, unlike the U-shaped ones, the rounded tubes can’t be maneuvered easily. Another downside of it is its portability. It’s kind of a hassle to drag a round-shaped float tube from the water and into the shore.
Pontoon-Shaped Float Tube
As the name suggests, this type of float tube looks like the miniature version of a pontoon boat. The great thing about this float tube type is its efficiency. There are a couple of cylindrical pontoons that are placed on either side of the paddler’s seat. If you want to sit higher than the water level, then this is the type of float tube that we think is suitable for you.
Moreover, a pontoon-shaped float tube provides an extra room on the front and back to promote maneuverability, and you can easily get on and off of the tube.
Teardrop-Shaped Float Tube
For anglers who are looking for a modernized float tube, the teardrop-shaped float tube would be your best option. This type of float tube is a hybrid type of pontoon and U-shaped float tubes, and it usually comes with an inflated portion behind the users back. It can be separated from the backseat and acts as a bow.
It can cut through the waters like how a normal paddler does. This isn’t as popular as the U-shaped float tubes, but popular enough to be listed here. A lot of anglers and other fishing enthusiasts are using and adapting this modern float tube.
How Can You Choose the Best Float Tube?
Choosing the best tube for you is very easy if you know how to follow the basic factor of various products, we have listed them below so that you will be able to land on the most suitable float tube that you can use for fishing.
Portability is related to the float tube’s weight, the more the float tube weighs, the harder for you to control, as well as to carry it around during your fishing trip. But if you are using the float tube with another person or two, then the weight of the product isn’t really an issue.
To most anglers, the portability of float tubes is one of the reasons why they have started using the product. So, if you are planning on using the float tube on a high mountain that has a beautiful lake at the top, then you should always go for the lighter option.
As we have mentioned previously, weight is an important factor to consider when choosing a float tube as this affects its portability. Though most of the products are lightweight, most of the new versions may have more weight than the older due to the use of materials. Some float tubes contain foam on the backrest for comfortability, so it adds a bit more weight on the float tube.
Therefore, if the weight is something you are concerned about, then always check on the tube’s weight before making a purchase. It would also be quite beneficial for you if you could carry the tube backpack style.
This is an important feature that float tubes should have, as you are mostly going to spend whole fishing on your float tube. Therefore, to be able to spend whole fishing without getting fatigued or aching back, look for a float tube that has a well-padded and adjustable backrest for maximum comfort.
Spending a day-long fishing trip on your float tube’s amazing features could be a fantastic and best fishing experience that you could get.
Backpackable Float Tube
If you are thinking about getting through remote areas to fish, then you should consider getting a float tube that is backpackable for easy traveling. This kind of float tube feature is much lighter than the others, and it includes a special design for carrying benefits. If you are planning on taking a heavier float tube on your fishing journey, then you should get a backpackable one that has a padded should pad for comfortability,
Most anglers prefer using a backpackable float tube for portability when going to hard-to-reach places when fishing.
Since you’ll be spending tons of hours sitting and waiting for a bite on your fishing rod, you would need to consider the float tube’s level of comfort. You’ll need to use something where the backrest can be adjusted to prevent backaches and fatigues when fishing. Also, you might want to use a tube that is higher than the water level to keep your body’s lower part dry to avoid causing irritations.
As we already know, a float tube is inflatable, so you’ll always have to keep in mind how long it can retain the air inside. Aside from air retainment, you ‘ll also have to consider if the product is made of high-quality materials, which could prevent it from getting ripper easily when it gets caught up on a branch and others.
If you want to be able to use your float tube for a long time, you’ll know first if its made with hardy and sturdy materials, which could resist constant rip and tears upon usage and if it is abrasion-free. in float tubes, the most hardened material that they use is the rip-stop fabric. No matter what abrasive surface your tube gets rubbed on, no tears or any damages would appear thanks to the material’s sturdiness.
Storage and Attachment
If you are the kind of fishing enthusiasts who bring several items with them while fishing on the shore, you would need to use a float tube that has storage and attachment where you could place all your necessities when fishing.
If you can’t bring your gearbox, but need to use some of the fishing tools in it, you can easily bring them with you with the help of the storage and attachment areas of the tube.
Aside from keeping you at a higher level than the water, tubes with storage areas enable you to keep the gears and tools you need for fishing, without getting worried about them falling in the water. Aside from storage, the included attachments allow the tube to hold your fishing rod, in case you need to use both of your hands.
Tips and Tricks when Using Float Tubes
In addition to our fishing float guide, we are also going to throw in several helpful tips and tricks about float tubes, which you could use once you are fishing with a float tube or while you’re still purchasing the right product for you.
- Fitting is the most essential thing that you need to consider when purchasing your float tube, especially if it’s your first time to buy a float tube. Among all the types of float tubes in the market, the U-shaped and round-shaped float tubes are the most basic and popular classifications.
- There are a lot of people saying that the round ones are hard to maneuver when fishing, but this isn’t true as a lot of beginners find it easy to maneuver. However, compared to new versions, this type of float tube sits low where you are already at the same level as the water.
- Unlike the round float tubes, the U-shaped float tubes are much larger and heavier as they are heavily equipped for convenience and durability, and they contain one removable crossbar.
- Another thing that you need to consider is that float tubes aren’t as hi-tech as the kayaks, where you could easily maneuver with just one swing of a paddle. So, if you’re new to using and controlling a float tube, you should always be cautious about the float tube you are riding and to your surroundings. So, if you want to achieve full control over your new purchase a floater, you’ll have to practice several times to be able to use and control your float tube at will.
- While practicing, you can purchase a pair of flippers to maneuver the float tube without straining yourself easily. But if you prefer using paddles, you can also go for it until you get the hang of using the tube normally. But if you prefer using a paddle, make sure to choose the smaller ones as they are much convenient than the standard size.
- Float tubes are traditionally made to be used on small lakes and ponds for the user’s safety, so be careful when choosing a fishing area when you are using a floater. We recommend that you steer away from oceans and rivers that usually have fast-moving waters. But if you consider using it on a fairly calm river, then we suggest that you use a life vest just in case there are water rapids.
- If the winds are blowing to the shore, then it is safe for you to use the tube when fishing, but if it’s blowing from the shore and to the farthest part of the lake or river, then you’ll have to get out of the water quickly before it could take you to the deepest and most distant part of the lake. If you are a newbie, this situation could pose a big problem for you.
FAQs on Fishing Float Tubes
Q: Is it Safe for Fishing?
A: Yes, it is very safe to use for fishing, especially when it is used on lakes. But to ensure your safety, you can also use a life vest to avoid drowning even if the water is not too deep. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Also, we suggest that you do not use the float tube when the water is moving as the water will flip you over. Therefore, do not use a hollow tube on the ocean.
Q: Can I Use it on the River?
A: Unlike lakes, the water in the river often moves, making it a bit dangerous to use a float tube on it. We recommend that you don’t use it on rivers, oceans, or any moving waters. But if you persist on using it in moving waters, we suggest that you try to stay near the shore or you could tie your float tube on a nearby tree, so that you won’t get swept away off the shore.
Q: How Many People Could Fit in a Float Tube?
A: This will depend on the type of float tube you have chosen to purchase, each fishing float tube have different seating and weightlifting facility. Some float tubes in the market could fit for two and three persons, but float tubes for one person are the most common option. Therefore, you might need to spend more time looking for a float tube that could fit a couple of people.
Q: Where Can I Buy Float Tubes?
A: While some shops sell about one or two pieces of float tubes, looking for a shop that sells a lot of selection is quite difficult. So, where can you find a float tube that has several selections of products? Since there is limited availability of float tubes in land-based stores, most fishermen and anglers purchase their float tubes online.
So, the best sites that you can visit when looking for float tubes are:
- Amazon – they have a large selection of float tubes available, so you won’t have to choose the best product that would suit your needs.
- Cabela’s – like Amazon, they also have a large selection of products that can provide you with a few selections of float tubes.
- eBay – this site doesn’t have a large selection of float tubes like Amazon’s or Cabela’s, but they still sell a few high float tubes for anglers and fishermen. So, consider visiting their site as well.
Q: What Else Should I Get when Purchasing a Float Tube?
A: Adding in the right accessories for your float tube for fishing can either make or break the item, break because sometimes, some users tend to over-equip their float tubes, causing it to sink in the water or create some holes on it. So, be careful when investing in additional materials for your float tube.
The main things that you should get when purchasing a float tube is a life vest, wader, and/or a paddle to maneuver your float tube easily. You can also use some fins instead of a paddle to maneuver your way through the water.
Q: What is the Ideal Float Tube Weight for Fishing?
A: The ideal weight for using a float tube for fishing should at least be around 45 pounds if you want to keep things light, or you can get a larger one that weighs approximately 50 to 70 pounds per person.
But remember to pack as light as possible to prevent any hassle before and after your fishing trip. If you want to go fishing with your child, friend, or wife, you should consider getting a two or three-person float tube.
To Wrap Up
Investing in a fishing float tube can provide an excellent experience for new and professional fishermen, as it is instrumental to reach fishing areas that you cannot easily get to. Using a kayak is possible, but they are much expensive, and transportation is much easier when you use a float tube instead.
Moreover, aside from purchasing a float tube, you can also make an initial investment on waders and fins to improve your fishing experience.
Once you have secured these items, it would take a bit more time and motivation for you to fish for the whole day. Willingness to fish isn’t an issue, especially if you get into the best fishing float tube when you go fishing on your favorite spot.