After the unfortunate cancellation last year, we have been counting down the days until the 2021 Florida Skiff Challenge, a grueling race to spread awareness about Florida’s water crisis
Taking place from April 8th to 11th, The Florida Skiff Challenge brings boat manufacturers together in a competitive format to show off their maritime acumen and—most importantly—shine light on Florida’s water crisis.
And with everything going on with Florida’s water right now—from the ongoing battle to restore America’s Everglades to the devastating situation unfolding at Piney Point in Tampa Bay—there couldn’t be a more important time than now to shine that light as bright as possible.
Each team consists of two courageous (and a little insane) captains that will navigate around Florida non-stop in an 18-foot skiff while a pit crew trails their path on land with gas, gear and provisions.
Whether your boat is new, old, or somewhere in between, a custom SeaDek kit will transform your boating days regardless.
Take this custom kit on a 2008 Regal 4060, designed and installed by SeaDek Certified Fabricator Contemporary Marine Flooring on Lake Coeur D’alene in Idaho. A classy four inch teak pattern in Mocha over Black made this Regal look like an entirely new boat—great work guys!
We are extremely proud of our partnership with aluminum bass boat manufacturer Xpress Boats, and as their innovative designs featuring Genuine SeaDek have taken the industry by storm, it has been amazing to watch their rise within the ranks of professional bass fishermen.
After a phenomenal couple of weeks for Xpress’ Pro Anglers, Bill Lowen and the Xpress crew sat down with Luke Dunkin for an episode of Low Budget Live (Not So Live).
On this episode, Luke runs his mouth about the Bassmaster Open reschedule, the Auburn University Bass Fishing Team being canceled, trouble in BPT paradise, and talks about the aluminum boat trend, big wins, and all things river fishing with special guests Elite Series’ Pro Bill Lowen, and Xpress Boats own Rory Herndon, and Clay Connor!
As longtime fans of OCEARCH and all the work that they do to advance shark research, we were thrilled to have the opportunity to forge a new partnership with their team this year. Beginning with custom SeaDek kits for their Contender and Safeboat, as well as a top-secret project that will be unveiled this spring, helping them do their valuable work has been an honor and we look forward to working on more projects with these rockstars of the sea in the near future.
For those not familiar with OCEARCH, they are a data-centric organization built to help scientists collect previously unattainable data in the ocean. Their mission is to accelerate the ocean’s return to balance and abundance, through fearless innovations in scientific research, education, outreach, and policy, using unique collaborations of individuals and organizations in the U.S. and abroad.
After missing so many boat shows over the last year, we know lots of people can’t wait to see the freshest new boats on the market at the Palm Beach International Boat Show! Starting Thursday and running through Sunday, the show is one of the largest in Florida, featuring more than $1.2 billion worth of yachts and accessories, including boats ranging from 8-foot inflatables to superyachts nearly 200 feet long.
If you will be attending the show, be sure to visit SeaDek Certified Fabricator Open Water Concepts in Booth #310. Open Water Concepts specializes in everything custom SeaDek, and can travel to your boat to digitally pattern, design a custom kit, and perform a professional installation. Based in Stuart, Florida, they are the local faces of SeaDek, and will be standing by with material samples and answers to any questions that you may have.
About the Show
March 25-28, 2021 Thursday: Noon – 7:00 pm Fri – Sat: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm Sunday: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
101 S Flagler Dr, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
Can’t make it to the show? Contact Open Water Concepts at:
We have been receiving A TON of great photos from our customers recently, with many of them documenting the replacement of old, nasty marine carpet with Genuine SeaDek kits! SeaDek is the ultimate carpet alternative, being non-absorbent, easy to clean, comfortable underfoot, and fully customizable to your boat!
Steve in Florida recently worked with our Customer Advocate Team to design a custom kit to replace the ailing carpet in his 2004 Moomba Outback, and shared some photos of the replacement process. What a difference! Great work Steve; now it’s time to hit the lake!
Congratulations to SeaDek Pro-Angler Bill Lowen for his huge Bassmaster win on Pickwick Lake! From the SeaDek family to yours, we are so happy for you Bill, and excited to see all your years of hard work come to fruition!
The only competitor to break 20 pounds three of the four days, Lowen placed third on Day 1 with 21-3 and improved to second a day later by adding 23-13. He earned his final-round berth on Day 3 with a limit of 17-10 that put him in a first-place tie with Chad Pipkens.
On Tuesday, Lowen surged across the finish line with a limit of 20-11. Edging second-place Brock Mosley by 2-10, Lowen claimed his first Elite win and earned $102,000, which includes the daily and overall Phoenix Boats Big Bass awards.
Lowen’s game-changing kicker bit around 10:30 a.m., when he skipped his black and blue Signature Series 3/8-ounce Lure Parts Online jig with a chunk trailer under a dock near Kogers Island. He initially snagged a piece of submerged cover, but then his line tightened.
“I had to pitch way up in there so the bait could get down in the current and sweep it through,” Lowen said. “I felt my jig get into a limb or a piece of brush, and as I hopped the jig over I felt the bite.
“I hesitated because I wanted to be sure, but when I got big pressure, I set the hook and it was game on.”
Lowen described that emotional catch: “There were so many feelings going through my head. You could hear me screaming and hollering and that’s not me. But that’s 14 years of excitement built up for this day. It all came out.”
The Tennessee Valley Authority steadily worked the volume through the system. But with Wilson Dam dumping approximately 180,000 cubic feet per second into Pickwick, the rising water and intense current dramatically changed Lowen’s game plan.
“My main goal was to start the tournament out on the grass flat by Koger Island. When all this rain and current came through I (was concerned) because I didn’t have anything else.
“The first morning of the event I ran down there and saw what was going on, and I said, ‘These fish have to slide to the sides — whether it’s on the island where I was fishing or the docks on the other side.’ Fortunately, when I pulled up and started flipping trees I got a bite, which keyed me in.”
That pattern worked for three days, but in the final round, falling water had drained much of Lowen’s prime habitat.
“Today, my main area (shallow cover on the outskirts of Kogers) was a foot and a half low,” he said. “A lot of the wood I was catching fish on was dry, so I started running some deeper stuff. I switched from the 3/8-ounce jig to a 1/2 and caught a couple key fish.”
Earlier in the tournament, Lowen used the 3/8-ounce jig so he could float it through the shallow, current-swept cover without getting hung up. He also used a Strike King Rodent Texas-rigged on a 5/0 Hayabusa flipping hook with a 5/16-ounce Reins tungsten weight for flipping reeds.
“Anytime I’m fishing current and I can keep a flipping rod in my hand, that’s my comfort zone,” Lowen said. “I grew up on the Ohio River, which looks just like (Pickwick) when it’s flooded. I’m used to rising, muddy water; it doesn’t affect me or make me get spun out. I just went out and fished the way I’d fish at home.”
Over the years, we’ve seen some pretty awesome DIY installs from folks who love a good project, and we couldn’t help but share these photos that we recently received from Emily L., who used SeaDek Sheet Material to breathe new life into her family’s 1994 Cobalt 220.
With time and a bit of patience, excellent results can be achieved cutting your own SeaDek pads at considerable savings to custom work. SeaDek sheet material is available in a 5mm thickness with an embossed or brushed texture in our most popular colors.
Ready to start your DIY SeaDek project? Head to our Webstore to shop now!
Catamarans have more deck space for all the good things that boating has to offer, including SeaDek! Check out these photos of a custom SeaDek kit installed by one of our customers in his 2017 Twin Vee 31 SE. That is one good, clean install—nice work, Brent!
“I have completed my SeaDek install. Not bad for a first-timer!
SeaDek has been a prominent non-skid material in the competitive sailing sphere for some time now, as it provides unrivaled traction, negligible weight additions, and opportunities for bold branding. Spurred in part by our early work with America’s Cup and Volvo Ocean Race teams, professional sailors have come to trust SeaDek, utilizing it in everything from racing dingys to bluewater yachts.
In Newport, Rhode Island—arguably the epicenter of North American sailing—SeaDek Certified Fabricator Performance Sail Tools routinely works on high-profile projects with some of the biggest names in sailing. Their reputation for precision and accuracy within the sailing community has put them on the decks of some of the most recognizable racing yachts on the planet, and this Vesper Maxi 72 is no exception. Beautiful work, team!