Ready for Anything Aboard the Conch 27

With a new Conch 27, avid angler Riley Linden is locked and loaded with everything he needs for all types of fishing

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The Conch 27 out for a cruise. Photo by George LaBonte
The Conch 27 out for a cruise. Photo by George LaBonte

For a young guy with an insatiable appetite for fishing, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better location to grow up than Jupiter. The area has produced some of the most ardent and talented fishing enthusiasts in the world, and Riley Linden of Tequesta is a classic example of the kind of fishing pedigree one can acquire here.

Riley’s first boat was a 17-footer, which he cut his teeth on as a youngster, terrorizing the Loxahatchee River. Next came a 25-foot center console, which provided his introduction to blue water. Once he had a taste of the Gulf Stream, there was no looking back. His current pride and joy is a tournament-rigged Conch 27, which he and his father, Mike, had built to spec. 

By the time the Conch 27 was under construction, Riley had a firm grasp on the type of fishing that appealed to him most. Notably, pelagics such as swordfish and yellowfin tuna, along with sailfish and wahoo, sat at the top of his list. The challenge of highly technical deepwater bottom-fishing is also something the father and son enjoy in the Bahamas. Provisions were made throughout the build process to facilitate each of these fishing styles.

Two 200-hp Mercury Racing engines provide more than enough power. Photo by George LaBonte
Two 200-hp Mercury Racing engines provide more than enough power. Photo by George LaBonte

All Conch boats are semi-custom vessels built to the owner’s personal specifications. For the Lindens, one priority was abundant live well capacity to handle the volume of bait necessary for tournament fishing or live chumming for tuna. A pair of 75-gallon wells are located below the deck, and an additional 50-gallon tank is located in the transom. Matching raw water washdowns are also located to starboard and port in the event that they need to add portable tanks for transporting massive quantities of bait ahead of a tournament. 

The Conch 27. Photo by George LaBonte
The Conch 27. Photo by George LaBonte

The Conch is also outfitted with six independent 12-volt outlets for kite reels and for deep-dropping with powered reels. This ensures that Riley and his dad have a place to plug in for any condition, 360-degrees around the deck. The mobility this allows is important for deep-dropping, daytime swordfishing, and kite fishing alike.

Audio speakers above the forward casting deck. Photo by George LaBonte
Audio speakers above the forward casting deck. Photo by George LaBonte

Twin 12-inch Simrad MFD units with an open-array radar provide electronic support, while a pair of 300-hp Mercury Racing engines offer more power than anyone would likely need. It does, however, make short work of the long trip across to Bahamian waters in search of the excitement found under packs of wheeling sea birds following northbound migrating yellowfin tunas.

Power File

Length: 27 feet

Beam: 9 feet

Draft: 16 inches

Deadrise: 22.5 degrees

Fuel: 200-300 gallons

Max HP: 800

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