The sneak boat, also called a layout boat, is a shallow water boat that is perfect for duck hunting. While a small jon boat can function as a layout boat in many ways, the distinct design of these boats offers an added benefit over small jon boats, and certainly over larger jon boats.
1. They have a lower profile than most other boats. Hunting from inside them, either on the water or secured at the shore, puts you lower down on the water and your profile less visible to incoming ducks. This boat design is great for when there is little or no cover on the bank, or when you are hunting from your boat in a large bay or other open water right out in the middle of your decoys.
2. Layout boats are great in shallow water. They can be push-poled, paddled or even walked out to position in the middle of a grassy flat. Pile your decoys, gun and other gear into your boat, and walk it to position in shallow water - it serves as a great water-barrow.
A hunter easily pulls one of the Beavertail line of sneak boats. Click image for link.
3. They are lightweight, easy to haul and to store. Smaller ones can be managed without a trailer.
4. Many are made from molds, so they are durable and there are no seals to break.
5. They are easy to set up and take down quickly, so you can change spots in a hurry if you see the ducks are in another spot, or you are facing hunting competition in your spot.
6. Hunting from layout boats puts you close in to the action. Using them as a blind and boat really puts you in the thick of things.
This Beavertail sneak boat puts you close to the action. Click image for link.
7. Sneak and layout boats give you more access to places. These little boats can go where other, larger jon boats cannot go.
8. Sneak and layout boats are no-frills and quiet. For hunters who like the peaceful stillness of an early morning or late afternoon, these boats offer a quiet boating experience that gets you to your hunting spot without a lot of noise and extra gear.