Fitting an electric trolling motor to a rental canoe

I am an avid float fisherman. It seems to me that now, in the “modern era,” the predominant watercraft for float fishing is the kayak.  

But not for me… my ideal watercraft for float fishing Ozark streams is the canoe. 

And I feel there are still anglers who feel the same way.  

So, in this article I am going to share my secret for a select group of float fishermen, those who use a canoe which is “pointed” at both ends.

But, in particular, those who rent a canoe from an outfitter. I suggest this is usually a canoe pointed at each end, although I have encountered outfitters who have “square-ended” canoes.

A valuable configuration of a float fishing canoe is one that has an electric trolling motor. Consider:

• Turning on a trolling motor for a brief burst of thrust can put you in just the right position to make perfect casts to spots that look fishy, and you don’t have to pick up a paddle. 

• For streams that have a lot of rather long pools, the thrust of a trolling motor can save you a lot of paddling to get from the beginning of the pool, where the fishing is usually good, to the lower part of the pool where there is likely better fishing than the middle of the pool. 

• Trolling motors are great for turning around and going upstream to retrieve a snagged lure. 

Of course, there are a lot of other advantages.

The secret I want to share is “how to outfit a rental canoe with an electric trolling motor.” I realize that this is probably geared to a very select group of readers, but they are my kind of anglers, and I would like to enhance their float fishing experience.

For many years of float fishing Ozark streams, I used a 14-foot, flat-bottomed, fiberglass water
craft of Jon boat design, except that it had a rounded bow. 

On the squared-off stern I clamped a 7.5 hp Scott Atwater outboard engine. My fiberglass Jon boat weighed 102 pounds and was carried on two racks atop our family station wagon. 

Usually my outings required a fishing partner to help with the loading and launching.

As my three children grew old enough to start fishing, I contrived portable wheels on the stern end, which allowed me to offload and wheel this stable craft to the water for launching.

Surprisingly, there are can be many reasons for it and sildenafil 100mg tab at the same time, it is not necessary that a macho man can go harder and longer when it comes to matters of sexual arousal and interest. Meanwhile women were left in the cold as if they are nothing more than cialis discount pharmacy a ball to be bounced around without any reverence, regard or respect and that must change. Tablets, soft tabs and jellies are being required cialis get viagra by many males with the same condition. Hard erections tend to be main cialis 40mg dependence on suitable sexual intercourse. It made a wonderful float boat, drawing little water and handled almost as easily as a canoe.

As the years passed, the 7.5 hp outboard became increasingly unreliable. At some point in my faded memory, I then switched to rental canoes.  

Occasionally I was able to rent a “squared-ended” canoe and my fishing partner would have an electric trolling motor — which I thought was really traveling first class!  

Only one thing kept me from acquiring my own trolling motor — the 12v auto battery required for electric current was too darn heavy to handle by myself!

Soon after I joined the St. Louis chapter of the Missouri Smallmouth Alliance (MSA), two events changed my fishing life:

(A) At a “BatteryPlus+” store I discovered a small, lightweight (26 pounds) 12v deep cycle rechargeable battery; and

 (B) A recommendation for a source to buy an excellent side-mounted bracket for an electric trolling motor (thanks to the late MSA member, Norman Leppo).

May I tell you how glorious it is, while idly sitting in a canoe, to twist the handle on an electric trolling motor and move through a long pool of water against an upstream wind?

Or effortlessly reposition your canoe for that perfect cast by using a short application of power from an electric trolling motor… without laying a hand on a paddle? 

Being a loyal and proper MSA member, I am now going to share with you my findings for fitting an electric trolling motor to any rental canoe.

The photo to the side shows a canoe with a side-mounted trolling motor… a typical setup for my fishing floats. A close-up of the stern section of the canoe shows the “FLIPPER” side-mounted bracket for an electric trolling motor setup.

The bar of the motor mounting bracket is fabricated from heavy gage aluminum, has movable clamps which fit under the canoe’s side rails, and are tightened with hand-turned wing nuts. The hinged block allows the trolling motor to kick up when an object is struck.

The FLIPPER Side-Mounted Motor Mount can be purchased from Spring Creek Manufacturing, 873 Main St., Mountain Iron, MN 55768. Their phone is (880)937-8881, and they can be reached by email at Their website is

If you access the internet for side-mountef motor mounts, you will find quite a few that are less expensive than the “FLIPPER” bracket, but none are so well made.

The second important component is, of course, a 12 volt battery. Here is a picture of the small lightweight battery and its charger, as mentioned above, shown in relation to the FLIPPER trolling motor mount.

Its size is 8x6x6; rechargeable (full time trickle charge); weighing 26 pounds. Usually, one charged battery will last for an all-day float but I carry a second battery as a backup.

Now you know how… after many, many years of Ozark float fishing… I arrived at my perfect watercraft setup!

By Len Stagoski

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