We took the new Pursuit 3070 Offshore from Fort Pierce, Florida, to Walker’s Cay in the northern Bahamas for a week of fishing. You really find out everything there is to know about a boat after living with it for a week, washing it down, and fishing it day after day. The Pursuit 3070 has a lot of innovation in its design and execution. So much, in fact, that from a fishing standpoint, I think it may be the finest boat Pursuit has ever built.
Traveling to the Bahamas in 1- to 3-foot seas close on the bow, we easily maintained 29 mph with the Yamaha OX66 250-hp outboards humming contentedly behind us. A short stint of steeper 4- to 6-foot seas under some squalls while crossing the Gulf Stream required us to drop down to 23 mph.
Later in the week, however, heading out to the fishing grounds from Walker’s Cay into a healthy northeasterly sea, we moved along without pounding at 23 to 29 mph while those around us were lifting entire hulls out of the water trying to keep up. Over the course of a week, we experienced everything from flat-calm to 8-foot seas, and on every point of sail the 3070 stayed dry and comfortable.
When trolling in a beam sea, I found the 3070’s roll, transition moment and pattern predictable. I also found that when trolling into a head sea (one of my least favorite things to do), the 3070 again rode more comfortably than most boats its size. A fine forefoot combined with a reasonable (not ultra-light) weight makes it so.
I got precious little chance to run this express at its 45-mph/5,000-rpm top speed. Of course, in the Bahamas, where gasoline is twice as expensive as in the U.S., burning 59 gph isn’t prudent anyway. Trolling at 6 mph and sipping 4.6 gph at 1,200 rpm was much more economical. Once again, my argument against judging a boat solely on top-end speed bears merit.
The 3070 turns beautifully, banking into turns and transferring g-forces to the bottom rather than outboard. And you’ll know you’ve matched each sea condition to an appropriate speed when the stern becomes the fulcrum point and the bow gently lowers, rather than lifting the hull out of the water and landing stern first.
Minor wheel movement caused the 3070 to respond instantly. Accurate, close-quarters maneuvering can be accomplished equally well by using either the gears – as with twin screws – or the wheel, as with outboards.
This Pursuit’s cockpit is large enough to handle several anglers at once and small enough to have everything within easy reach. The centerline helm-seat pod provides two doors, each containing a storage cubby and two deep tackle drawers as well as a rigging station on top.
Without doubt, you’ll find the best, most innovative option aboard the 3070 in the stern. The forward face of the transom has three large, refrigerated bait drawers with steel-plate bottoms that keep your dead baits hovering at around 40 degrees Fahrenheit, eliminating the need for a portable cooler in the cockpit. At the end of the day, slide the drawers out and hose down the box. It drains into the fish-box macerator.
Speaking of the fish box, I commend Pursuit for designing the first perfect fish box I’ve seen. The drain and bottom have been executed so as to allow every last drop of liquid to exit the box when you pump it out.
Though the cockpit sole has a metal plate glassed in to handle a fighting chair, I think Pursuit’s sailfish rocket launcher proved more utilitarian while taking up less room.
At first glance, you may be surprised that you can’t fit rods on the under-gunwale racks. Don’t worry, though. The 3070’s helm deck tilts up on an electric ram to reveal storage area for up to 12 offshore rod/reel combos. For a week’s trip for five to the Bahamas, we stowed all but one bag of personal gear in this compartment. I expect most owners will opt for the hardtop with five rocket launchers, built-in overhead fluorescent lights and a courtesy light directly over the wheel. Combined with the four in-gunwale rod holders and the sailfish rocket launcher, we kept a lucky 13 rods handy around the cockpit.
Working the trolling pattern around the substantial prop wash with clear alleys to outboard and very modest surface turbulence from the chines definitely attracted fish. Loads of wahoo and dolphin didn’t seem to prefer any particular spot to strike, as we took hits on the planer baits close to the stern, the mid-distance flat lines and the long drop-back bait on centerline.
Design and Construction
If the 3070 looks familiar, it’s because it’s exactly the same hull as the inboard 3000 Express that Pursuit introduced last year, but with outboards. However, the similarities end there. The 3070 sports wide side walkways for access to the bow. The greatest difference can be found in the amount of on-deck seating available: more on the 3000 than on the new 3070.
Below, the 3070’s very comfortable cabin provides a V-berth (with insert) in the bow as well as a unique, large double berth amidships, under the helm deck. The mid-cabin berth’s entrance may be necessarily small, but once inside, it easily accommodates two large people.
Pursuit installed an unusual tongue-in-groove teak and holly cabin sole rather than the normal flush planking. The shallow, beveled troughs between each planking strip looked nice, but I needed a vacuum to clean dirt, crumbs and sand out of the grooves instead of being able to simply wipe the floor clean.
Pursuit’s well-engineered helm seat operates electrically, moving forward to function as a seat or aft to make a comfortable leaning post.
If you’d like a 30-footer with unimpeachable fishing credentials that can honestly sleep two couples in equal privacy, this Pursuit 3070 bears investigation.