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H E W E S C R A F T H I STO RY perform well.” Dzinbal also accredits the performance to the hull form. “This boat has 21-degree deadrise in the back, and something like 55 degrees up at the bow. We keep that keel low all the way forward too. If you look at Kingfisher or North River, companies we may be competing with, they pick their keel up as you move toward the bow. It may be a good entry angle, but it’ll slam more underway in weather.” How the 290 Adventure utilizes deadrise may be the answer to some of the smooth performing voodoo going on. “On these boats, unlike our other builds, the back third of this hull is flat constant deadrise. This helps with performance on large planing hulls.” For Hewescraft shipping supervisor and boat driver Jim Rogers, who is also aboard, the 290 Adventure is his favorite of the whole Hewescraft lineup. “This one is my favorite to drive. The performance, the handling, it's just great. Docking is easy with one person (bow thruster helps). This one just handles the best. Easy to tow, easy to dock, all-around good.” The full suite of electronics on hull #4 is not operational at the time of our ride, but performance data from Hewescraft publishes a maximum speed of around 47 miles per hour at 5,900 RPM, and that sounds right to me based on my ride. The fuel efficiency at that speed is about 1 mile per gallon or 47 gallons per hour. More typically, a cruiser will probably operate in the 20-something miles per hour range for a fuel consumption in the 12 to 20 gallons per hour and 1.7 to 1.6 miles per gallon range. More specs can be found by contacting Hewescraft or on their website at hewescraft.com. All told, driving hull #4 around Lake Roosevelt had me smiling from ear to ear.

THE FUTURE IS HEWESCRAFT After tucking away hull #4 on her trailer, Kirry and I part ways after some more boat talk. Turns out that hulls number 1 though 5 are built and spoken for and up to six more may be available during the upcoming 2019 model year. “The production run proper, when we will officially roll these out assembly line style at a pace of one and maybe eventually two a month, will not begin until our 2020 model year,” Kirry says. I ask him about the future of the company. Will Hewescrafts keep getting bigger? Will the company known for building safe, reliable, and fun runabouts have more for bluewater yachties as time goes on? “I think there’s a lot of good reasons for us to explore this market,” says Kirry. “We’ll

Hewes Marine Company was founded in 1948 by brothers Ralph and Bob Hewes, both pilots and airplane mechanics during WWII. After the war, they returned to Colville, Washington, and started Hewes Flying Service to train pilots, mostly attracting veterans with G.I. Bill money. Eventually, the G.I. money ran out, and the brothers went to building aluminum boats with three other friends of theirs. The agreement was to help build each other’s boats, but as each partner got his boat, he would disappear. Finally, the last remaining two were the Hewes brothers, who decided to start Hewes Marine Company as the reputation of their boats grew across Stevens County and beyond. Now in its 70th year of operation, the company is owned and operated within the family with Ralph Hewes’ sons, Bill and David Hewes. Hewescraft 290 Adventure Specs: LOA: 29’5” | Beam: 9’9” | Dry Weight (Boat Only): 8,500 lbs. Tankage (Fuel/Fresh/Black): 250 gals./40 gals./28 gals. More information is available at hewescraft.com

Below: Brothers Bob and Ralph Hewes in the 1940s and Hewescrafts from 1977 and 1987.

follow the opportunity, and if the 290 Adventure does as well as I think it could, we’ll definitely be playing with bigger boats. It’s easy for me to imagine an 310 Adventure that features an extended cockpit for even more fishing capabilities.” From an industry perspective, the 290 Adventure looks like a contender in what I’m dubbing the Pacific Northwest Trailerable Pocket Cruiser Renaissance (PNTPCR? Pint Picker?) we’re going through. Recently, local builders have been churning out quality pocket cruisers that have affordability as a top consideration with massive success. Examples include Ranger Tugs and Cutwater, built in Washington, that are now ubiquitous on the water. Anecdotally, the recent Ranger Tug rendezvous was attended by hundreds of their clients, very impressive for a company less than a decade old. The 290 Adventure is definitely a crossover of

sorts, with elements of aluminum family fishing boats and more luxurious cruisers. As far as the company’s future is concerned, a nearby factory space—once a lamp manufacturer—will soon be the new headquarters. The current Hewes Marine Company facility is 60,000 square feet with office space in modular outbuildings, while the new location has 100,000 square feet of manufacturing space with 30,000 square feet of office space included. In many ways, this factory move says it all. If the larger Hewescrafts like the 290 Adventure do become a success, they’ll need all the space they can get. Norris Comer is the managing editor of Northwest Yachting magazine. Say hi on Facebook at Norris Nelson Comer, follow on Instagram @norriscomer, or send an email at norris@nwyachting.com.

The 290 Adventure with hard, 8" chines visible. She maxes out at around 47 miles per hour when trimmed properly.

OCTOBER 2018 || NORTHWEST YACHTING

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Profile for Northwest Yachting

NW Yachting October 2018  

The latest on power and sail boating in the Northwest, featuring Wendy Hinman's tips for Cruising Hawaii; a preview of Hewescraft's newest p...

NW Yachting October 2018  

The latest on power and sail boating in the Northwest, featuring Wendy Hinman's tips for Cruising Hawaii; a preview of Hewescraft's newest p...