The Walker Bay 8 – should you buy one or something else? Read our Walker Bay 8 review and see if the Walker Bay is going to be your next boat (it is, isn’t it? We thought so)….
What Is The Walker Bay 8
The Walker Bay 8 is a tough little plastic dinghy (HIMC – High Impact Marine Composite to give it it’s technical name) that you can throw about on the beach, graze over the rocks, row out to your anchored motor boat on, the Quicksilver 425 Commander Sportspoat in my case, throw on top of the car (71lbs, or 32kg), then down the side of the house and completely forget about her until you need her again.
Then, aside from some algae, she will be right and ready to go again.
Ultimately, the Walker Bay 8 is a reliably, steady work horse of a dinghy.
Yes, it is ultimately a plastic boat, so if you are a traditional fibre glass or wood snob (as I was before buying her) then this may put you off.
It damn well shouldn’t. Don’t let it.
Wood needs constant upkeep.
Fibre glass doesn’t like being slammed around on rocks.
They don’t claim that the Walker Bay 8 is indestructible but they really could do, because it pretty much is.
With the wheel in the hull, you can easily drag her up and down the beach one handed.
You will need a second hand to lift your Walker Bay onto a roof rack, but otherwise it really is a boat that you can launch and recover on your own.
Do You Need The RID 275 Inflatable Tube?
I have never used this.
I have rowed her hard in land and sea races with a child on board (tip – get them to lie on the floor so that they are beneath your rowing seat which will enable the boat to row much more quickly – not doing that cost me the race – you’re welcome ;)) and also rowed her out into the bay in Hope Cove, Devon, which can get quite choppy, but I didn’t have a problem with the sea, or climbing off her onto my anchored sportsboat, and vice versa.
I am not a skinny guy, so I am sure if I can manage it, most people can too.
However, if you want the complete safety, and you do not fancy being tipped into the sink, then for a few hundred pounds it will give you complete peace of mind.
Do You Need An Outboard Engine For Your Walker Bay 8?
I have never had one, but have only rowed her a few miles each time.
So, ultimately it will depend on how you want to use your Walker Bay 8.
If you just want to get out into the bay and fish, or use her as a tender, then no engine is needed (saving lifting, storing and serving costs and hassle).
If you want to potter up and down a river, or go further afield, then that might justify an engine, but otherwise there really isn’t a need as far as I can see.