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April 06, 2012

Pathfinder 2400 TRS

The Pathfinder 2400 TRS is a guide's dream bay boat with amenities to please a family.

As growing expenses compete for less income, boaters demand their craft provide more than just superior fishability. Reliable power, easy-cleaning nonskid decking and easy-to-service livewell pumps aren’t enough to collect a signature on a sales contract running north of $50,000.

Creature comforts for the family often clinch the deal, but never at the expense of a tournament-winning fishing platform. My recent experience shows Pathfinder’s quest to deliver fish and comfort finds its destination in the 2400 TRS.

Performance
Powered by the new Yamaha SHO 250 and loaded to fish with a full tank of fuel, a Power-Pole, trolling motor and three batteries, the test boat topped out at 50 mph. Jay Withers, the Pathfinder representative on my run, was mumbling audibly over the smooth engine something to the effect of “it goes faster with less gear.” He’d ­registered 54 on his GPS previously.

But this boat was rigged for economy, hole shot, draft and a powerful hookup at midrange speeds. A four-blade, 26-inch pitch Turbo prop was responsible for the effect. We could’ve gone faster with a three-blade Saltwater Series, but when we skimmed over the 18-inch flats without raking muck and safely shot the hole in three feet, I understood completely the need for the slower four-blade with better lift and midrange hookup.

The 15-degree-deadrise hull had little to challenge it but a light chop on Florida’s Charlotte Harbor waters. The ease with which we ran reflects in the legibility of my test data, hand-scribed at top speed. Generating “seas” isn’t hard though, especially when adjusting the silky electronic throttle and twisting the power-assist helm. The steep rollers we cut shouldered into us with brutality, but the TRS deflected them easily.

Fishing
Inshore guides and hard-core ­tournament anglers live and die by their livewell — or livewells in this case; the 2400 sported three. Each was fitted with premium high-volume pumps. Optional sea strainers ­(standard on the tournament series) maintain a strong flow of fresh seawater. Easy-change cartridges and Deutsch connectors provide a fallback should the livewells unthinkably fail in a tournament when, as Withers said, “captains fill ’em black with bait.”

We drifted over the calm backwater, casting to trout and reds. I changed vantage points from stern to bow and back again, enjoying the stability the 8-foot-6-inch beam afforded. Walkways around the console are ample, even with a brace of rods in the vertical holders.

The area aft of the leaning post is a little tight, though an improvement over some competitors’ cockpits. And, when we flipped down the aft seats — creating a broad casting platform — that space made up nicely for the pinch in the cockpit.

Two huge bow compartments stayed dry thanks to gaskets on the rims. Their volume kept tons of gear secure and the deck clear. Rod lockers and dedicated tackle storage left me feeling that the boat was empty — until we needed a different lure. Fish in the icebox? Naw — we chatted too much, enjoying the balmy late-fall air.

Design and Construction
As the capabilities of electronic marine accessories expand and improve, practical space for them must be designed. Pathfinder did its homework here too. At the helm, I found ample space for a multifunction chart plotter/fish finder. The test boat also sported a transommount PowerPole and a Rhodan HD GPS Anchor trolling motor on the bow. Pathfinder assures the security of these mounts with structural-foam stiffeners in the deck, gunwales and transom, where mounting bolts must fasten.

All decks and hatches are reinforced with high-density foam. That’s carefully glassed in, protecting it from moisture and ensuring your hull won’t gain water weight through seep holes or poorly sealed fastener penetrations. The same goes for the transom panel of durable structural foam between carefully laid fiberglass laminations.

To customize a 2400 TRS, anglers have many factory-installed options from which to choose, like a ­freshwater washdown system; saltwater is standard. An extra pair of flush-mount gunwale rod holders can be ordered optionally as well. A hardtop with electronics box and a canvas T-top are also available.

For today’s anglers searching for that value equation, Pathfinder’s TRS certainly balances fishing intensity with family friendliness.

Specifications

LOA: 23 ft. 11 in.
BEAM: 8 ft. 6 in.
DRAFT: 12 in.
DEADRISE: 15 deg.
WEIGHT: 2,950 lb. (w/ power)
FUEL: 80 gal.
MAX POWER: 300 hp
MSRP: $62,427 (w/ Yamaha SHO VF250 LA)

Maverick Boat Company Inc. / Fort Pierce, Florida / 772-465-0631 / pathfinderboats.com

Notable Standard Features

> Under-gunwale fly-rod storage
> Tackle storage behind forward console seat
> Easy-change pump cartridges
> Graphics gelcoated, not painted
> Vertical rod holders in leaning post