“How does that do in all these weeds?”
“Do you have any trouble in the grass?
“How are those fins doing here, any trouble?”
Just a few of the questions I was asked in LaCrosse as I pedaled my Hobie Mirage Drive in, around and through all of the Wisconsin vegetation.
And the answer each time; “No trouble at all, it does great in all but the thickest of weeds!”
“My drive gets all tangled with weeds and I have to clean it out.”
“Not this one”, not the Mirage Drive.
There was almost a constant 15 mph wind blowing straight through the tunnel created by the three bridges I fished under, and weeds if I drifted east or west of that location. In addition, there was a strong current in all but the most protected locations. I spent the days slowing pedaling the Hobie PA12 to hold my location between the weed beds until I caught a fish, then the wind or current would carry me into the thicker vegetation where I would pedal my way out. Fishing from 8-11 hours, I was never tired by the Mirage Drive pedaling motion.
I watched other brands pulling into the grass beds or lily pads, then also watched as they pulled up their prop drives to clean the weeds out; or raising the prop drive and using a paddle. In my four days of fishing the Mississippi River backwaters, I pulled my drive up to pull the grass off the fins….zero times; used my paddle to turn the boat (I do not have the 180 drive…yet) when I drifted into the back of a cove or cut in the trees, not to go through weed beds.
To be quite honest, I marvel at the design; the small number of parts required to perform complex motions…by simply “stepping” toward your destination. By “feathering” the fins, it is easy to cover extremely shallow water; and only the thickest of vegetation can slow you – rarely brings you to a stop.
And it is not only functional in vegetation, it is durable. In South Carolina, I hit several stumps and bent the drive in directions that should have left it useless, but was able to fish over three fourths of a tournament in that condition.
I wouldn’t trade the Hobie with the Mirage Drive for anything else; I saw firsthand the difference between it and the prop drives in the thick Wisconsin waters.
So now for the other most frequent discussion………
“Is the Hobie PA worth the money?”
Hmmmm….the most comfortable seat on the market, stability unmatched, rod storage, H-rail and that Mirage Drive….I am going to say “YES!”.
Just go fish for an hour or two in the PA….and tell me I am wrong.