If you are going to fish from a boat, I think its important to have a fish finder on board to help you find where the fish are. It is going to help you target in on the fish instead of wasting fuel and time on the lake.
I have tried a few, but love the Garmin Striker 4 Finder. This little guy has a ton of features jam packed into along with one thing I find extremely valuable, which is GPS.
Features that I really like about this Fish Finder:
- CLEARVÜ SCANNING SONAR - Shows you more of what is in the water around your boat. This high-frequency sonar gives near-photographic images with detailed representations of objects, structure and fish.
- THE POWER OF SIMPLE - Offers a keyed interface with dedicated buttons. The device is easy to use and easy to install. Available in 3.5-, 5- and 7-inch display sizes.
- WAYPOINT MAP - Use the waypoint map to easily view, mark and navigate to locations such as brush piles, stumps and docks.
- CHIRP SONAR - CHIRP sends a continuous sweep of frequencies which provides a wider range of information. CHIRP sonar is able to create crisper fish arches with better target separation.
- BUILT-IN FLASHER - View your sonar data in the classic flasher format; ideal for ice fishing or vertical jigging.Display size: 1.9 x 2.9 inches (4.9 x 7.3 cm); 3.5 inches diagonal (8.7 cm)
Its extremely important to know where you are going and how to get back to where you came from in case you stay out too long and it gets dark. Being in a boat at night can be scary enough, so GPS is going to be a life saver. If you buy a fish finder that doesn't have GPS on it, I would highly recommend getting a little hand held GPS like the Garmin GPSMAP 64s. It could save your life, or at the very least getting into an accident in your boat.
Do I really Need one
No, you don't really need to have a fish finder, or GPS to catch fish and return back to the boat dock safely, but if you are going to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a boat, I suggest that you spend the extra couple hundred bucks and really get the most out of your fishing experience. If you are going to be doing any night time, or dusk fishing, GPS is going to be a life saver.