The wind at Lake of the Ozarks, Mo., proved pretty unpredictable. One minute it blew benignly, and the next it created a challenging chop. Not ideal for fishing, but what a blessing for a boat test!
Skeeter’s MX 1825 wants to be all things to all anglers and, in fact, pulls that together quite well. It handled without a single idiosyncrasy on every point, both in calm and choppy waters. The most popular power package seems to be a 150-hp Yamaha, but our test boat sported a 200 and topped out at more than 50 mph, yet slow trolled — both forward and in reverse — with the best of them.
I particularly liked the response in a wheel-hard-over turn at cruising speed and trim. The MX 1825 bled speed quickly, leaned into the turn and exhibited little or no discomfort for passengers. Skeeter makes the act of turning itself much easier with hydraulic tilt steering. I might also add that as a large, economy-model person, I often find the ergonomics of small fishing skiffs less than adequate for my build. Not so in this case. Driving the 1825 was a pleasure, with plenty of room between the helm and the driver’s seat.
You might surmise that an 18-foot, dual-console fishing boat that seats four would leave scant room for fishing. But you’d be mistaken. The large, raised foredeck with baseplate for a swivel stool provides plenty of room to move around as well as copious storage in port and starboard boxes and rod storage belowdeck on centerline. More storage can be found under the consoles and in aft corner boxes, and more rod storage hides beneath the portside gunwale.
Skeeter’s goal for the MX 1825 (multi-species) was obviously fishing flexibility. The bow-mounted trolling motor combined with a 9.9-hp kicker on the transom offers exactly that. You can also opt for a rear trolling motor panel. It’s a rare boat that doesn’t spell compromise before you ever take it home!
The MX 1825 comes standard with a 25-gallon recirculating live baitwell in the transom as well as a 9-gallon bait box forward.
If you happen to depend on your marine electronics to improve your fishing and boating productivity, you’ll appreciate the larger-than-average space on the dash for mounting a multi-function display along with a VHF. Skeeter doesn’t offer any standard electronics packages, but the list of optional Lowrance and Humminbird units is long.
As to convenience and safety, Skeeter covers you there, too. Each MX 1825 comes with interior lighting, four stainless-steel pop-up cleats and a retractable boarding ladder that you can deploy while in the water.
Since most MX 1825 owners will haul their boats, Skeeter’s standard trailer package consists of a single-axle trailer with swing-away tongue, torsion axle, disc brakes, retractable tiedowns, XLT covered winch, spare tire and mount, color-coordinated fenders, custom aluminum wheels and a lengthy list of options.
Over Skeeter’s 60-year history, the company has introduced many firsts to the marine industry. The advanced (and complex) design parameters of the running surface combined with the absolute finest composite materials and structural innovations makes today’s Skeeters tough, reliable and trustworthy. Every boat undergoes Skeeter’s 90-degree turn test (read about it on the company website).
You can expect to pay in the neighborhood of $36,000 for a reasonably equipped MX 1825 with a Yamaha F150 outboard, trailer and a mid-range electronics package. The price of the boat we tested with the 200 Yamaha bumps that price up to about $44,000. Considering all the species you can effectively target, water conditions you can handle and applications (family, fishing, cruising, watersports) you can accommodate, the Skeeter MX 1825 strikes me as a pretty darn good deal. www.skeeterboats.com
Skeeter MX 1825
Length Overall: 18 feet, 4 inches
Beam: 8 feet, 1 inch
Draft (drive up): 1 foot, 2 inches
Dry Weight: 2,075 pounds
Fuel Capacity: 33 gallons
Max. Horsepower: 200 horespower
Base Price: $47,375 w/Yamaha F200