As the Extreme 610 Game King slipped off the tandem trailer and into the drink at the main Inverloch boat ramp, it occurred to me that this 6.1m of red and metallic awesomeness looked near damn near indestructible. In fact, if it wasn’t for the bright red colour, this ruggedly impressive vessel wouldn’t have looked out of place with an anti-aircraft gun either side and a machine gun turret on top!
That’s not surprising, seeing how these fully aluminium alloy fishing boats are designed and built by our Kiwi cousins across the Tasman – and we all know how they can’t stand namby-pamby hunting and fishing gear.
To be precise the Extreme range of fishing boats are made in Whakatane, on the east coast of the North Island – not very far at all from the fish-rich waters of the Bay of Plenty. They currently have the largest market share of any aluminium boat in New Zealand and are the most awarded alloy boat in the last 7 years. In Australia, Inverloch Marine are the sole distributor of these boats throughout Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, while in the northern states there are three other dealers nation-wide.
I got to have a squiz at three of the models in the Extreme range, thanks to Shane Hemming and Tim Edney from Inverloch Marine. Astute readers will have noted my previous reviews on the Extreme 570 Centre Console and the Extreme 700 Game King – both magnificent specimens of waterborne fishing machinery. I’d have to say, though, that the 610 was my favourite. I guess you could say it is the ‘Goldilocks model’: not too big, not too small, just right. As far as I’m concerned it is the perfect all-rounder, no matter whether you’re looking for a day on the bay with the fam, or heading out wide chasing gamefish with your mates.
Walking around the 610 it was immediately obvious that she was well prepared for fishy battle. The cockpit was huge, open at the back and very spacious. Space had been maximised by attaching the driver and passenger’s seats to the wall not the floor, while there were also side pockets for keeping gear out of the road. The control panel had been fitted out with all the fruit, including VHF radio, AM/FM radio (iPod compatible through Bluetooth) and Garmin touch-screen depth sounder/GPS combo. The cabin has sliding windows and a bonnet access hatch if you’re looking for a little fresh air, and there is a dashboard grab-rail in case things get rough. Meanwhile, downstairs, there is a substantial sleeping area, complete with mattresses that lift up to reveal a flushable, underbunk toilet. The self-draining anchor locker and winch can also be accessed from downstairs.
Out the back on the expansive decks there was lots of fishing space. To keeps the decks ready for action there were yet more storage areas, including side pockets and two large compartments in the transom. Along the top of the gunwales there are rod holders welded into place (rather than screwed) to help prevent corrosion. There is also a live bait well incorporated into the step of the walk-through transom, while hovering above the transom was a bait board and rod holder assembly, complete with steel ski tow hook.
Beneath the treadplate floor, there are three large buoyancy tanks, a 190L fuel tank, 300L of storage space, and kill tanks plumbed into the flooding keel (which, incidentally, further assists stability at rest). Then, on the roof of the hard top right up out of the way, are the radio aerials and yet more ‘rocket launcher’ style rod holders. Finally, all Extreme boats have external, transom-mounted fuel filling ports, which saves getting fuel spilt in the interior.
To put the boat through its paces, we left the jetty area and powered the boat towards the deeper water near the entrance to Anderson Inlet. It was immediately noticeable was that this is a very stable and sure-footed vessel, even in sharp turns. The V-bottomed hull also cut through the minimal chop with ease, with little pounding apparent. Tim explained that – as with other boats in the Extreme range – the 610 has a 20º deadrise, aggressively down-turned chines and a broad waterline beam that leaves more boat in the water. These features are specifically designed to provide an exceptional ride and stability at rest.
I felt confident they would also allow the 610 to cope easily with seas much rougher than those that presented on test day. The keel hits the water well forward, too, with a nice slope and a broad, proud nose helping the transition from standing to planing. Incidentally, with the 610 powered by a Yamaha 150hp 4-stroke outboard spinning a 17 pitch SDS (shift dampening system) propeller, the 610 popped out of the hole at around 25km/h and reached a top speed of nearly 70km/h with three POB.
The hull, like the rest of the boat, is constructed from marine-grade aluminium alloy. The aluminium on the sides and decks is 4mm thick, while that on the hull is 5mm – so this beast is made to last and should be well capable of withstanding most of the abuse you can throw at it.
f you’re ready to wage war on your fishy foes, why not make like Robson Green and get into some Extreme fishing of your own? The Extreme 610 Game King is a tough-as-nails, spacious, good looking and purpose-built fishing boat. What’s not to like? Why not give the boys from Inverloch Marine at call and arrange a test drive. I’m sure they’ll help you out with pricing as well.
For further information, pricing, or to arrange a test drive, contact Inverloch Marine on 03 5674 1502, or send them an email at --e-mail address hidden-- These guys are the sole dealers for Victoria, South Australian and West Australia. You could also have a look at www.extremeboats.co.nz
|Hull bottom thickness:||5mm|
|Side and deck thickness:||4mm|