We have been serious cruisers since 2005 when we sold our house to move onto our boat as we started our first Great Loop adventure (a circumnavigation of the Eastern United States from the Heartland Rivers to the North Atlantic Seaboard, Canada and the Great Lakes). This is our third year as part of the Ranger Tug family; we bought our Ranger Tug R27, Kismet, in August of 2011. We downsized from a 40-foot trawler to our shiny red tug without compromising our adventurous natures, in fact we feel we have expanded our cruising horizons by being able to trailer our boat all over the country to places harder or impossible to get to with a bigger boat. We see boating as a lifestyle choice more than a recreational activity and as such we were drawn to Ranger Tugs because, overall, we felt that being a member of the Ranger Tug family would provide us with a feeling of community while doing what we love to do. Boat!
Flexibility, mobility, economy, and community were key factors in our decision to downsize. Simply put, we feel that the flexibility we now enjoy means we can leave our home in northern Michigan, trailer our boat south in the fall, and be cruising on the Tennessee River in a matter of two days. Being able to trailer our boat across the country, using it as an RV on the way, gives us the kind of mobility we didn’t have with our 40-foot trawler. We can explore places we couldn’t easily get to with the larger boat. From an adventurer’s standpoint, we feel we have more freedom, not less. We can continue exploring not only more of the waters we’ve cruised for the last eight years, but inland lakes close to home and areas new to us, such as Lake Powel and Flaming Gorge Reservoir. We are able to spend summers in our home waters of the Great Lakes and head south, to Florida, for winter cruising. The economics of owning a smaller, trailerable boat spoke loud and clear to us. How could we not heed the call? Less boat storage and maintenance costs alone made the scenario attractive. The economy of a owning a trailerable trawler would provide a huge savings to our cruising kitty. We have fully embraced the Ranger Tug community, fostered directly by the factory. Their dedication to sponsoring owner Rendezvous and group cruises clearly shows their desire to not only make and sell a quality product, but also help get their owners out on the water to boat.
We recently participated in the Ranger Tug 2013 Fall Rendezvous, in Anacortes, Washington, attended by no less than 79 boats and 154 owners. Two months prior we joined the "Cruise to Desolation Sound," a factory sponsored group cruise of 69 boats, with 150 owners, to British Columbia's favorite cruising ground. Our experience with Ranger Tugs is unequaled to any relationship we’ve ever had when buying boats. To read more about these and other cruising adventures on our Ranger Tug R27 visit our blog, Trailer Trawler Life.
As an example of the company’s commitment to their owners, at the rendezvous they have practically their entire service and support staff on the docks. They’re there, at the ready, to assist owners with boating operation questions or service related issues during the three-day event. Although it’s a given that any mechanical system will experience hiccups at one time or another, it's how these situations are taken care of, to a customers satisfaction, that make the difference between an average company and a great one, like Ranger Tugs.
We were drawn to Ranger Tugs as a manufacturer from the beginning of our search for a trailerable trawler because we heard from several owners about the company’s support system, well beyond the initial sale. Yes, they had the style and high quality tug we were looking for. Yes, it met our trailerable and options requirements and as a bonus, it's a great looking boat. It was important to us that we choose a trailerable boat that was well backed by the company and made in America. It was Ranger Tugs reputation and drive, to take care of their customers after the sale, that galvanized us into taking part in one of the best ownership experiences we've ever encountered.
Jim & Lisa Favors – Kismet
Ranger Tugs R-27
"Good morning Andrew,
The Ranger Tug ad on page 18 of the December 2014 issue of BoatU.S. magazine grabbed our attention. It is, like everything else that comes out of Ranger, absolutely true. When we returned to Roche from our trip to Canada, the Customs Officer asked if we had been one of the boats at Rendezvous. Louise said yes and the Officer said, "well I can't remember all of them -- we counted 127 of them. They're nice boats."
What the ad says about the community of owners is also true. We have met a delightful group of people. Although there is a lot of knowledge available, nobody seems to have anything to prove. Owning and operating a Ranger (or Cutwater) speaks for itself.
The ad does not specifically say why all this is so. What makes for such a nice community of owners is the prompt, courteous, talented support provided by you and your colleagues. Thank you."
Lenny and Louise
2014 Ranger Tugs R-25SC
"I have been in business for 30+ years and it has been a long time since I have met and dealt with someone as pleasant as Kenny. We spent a couple of days with him during the shakedown for our new R-25SC - remember us from the Seattle show?
On the first day, we went thru all the systems on the boat and Kenny was not only supremely knowledgeable, but very patient and gracious in answering my millions of questions - some (most??) of which were undoubtedly pretty basic and probably already answered. His comprehensive instruction and orientation gave me a great deal of (probably misplaced) confidence in being able to operate the vessel safely.
On day two, we cruised out of Lake Union and to the south end of Lake Washington, where we met with Andrew and a couple of other tugs. Kenny was again the consummate professional in guiding me through the challenges of safe operation and navigation in unfamiliar waters. When it came time to return to the slip, Kenny encouraged me to take the helm and provided very good (and calm) advice. I was able to pull in forward and then even back in. I could not have done that without Kenny's guidance and calm presence. I knew I could depend on him to take over if I got into trouble.
All in all, our time with Kenny was not just a great learning experience, it was a lot of genuine fun.
You are very fortunate to have a great guy like Kenny on your staff."
Tim & Mary
2015 Ranger Tugs R-25SC
The Ranger Tug is such a great fishing boat-- low gear and rear helm make it a breeze to navigate between boats. The TV fish finder drops down and the fish are in full view. Drop inside if it gets cold. I am a complete novice and I caught a 25+ lb king on our first day fishing. The ranger tug made it possible.
Five crabs the next day didn't hurt. The king salmon fish head made for the perfect bait. And the crab pots fit perfectly in the swim step with room to access the dinghy.
Just be prepared to get questions. Everyone wants to see your boat.
2014 Ranger Tugs R-31CB