Peregrine Boats was due to deliver an aluminum 32’ x 16’ 6” Bristol Bay gillnetter in mid-May to Seattle’s Alex Urie. 

The Chugiak, Alaska, boatbuilder is well known for building bow-and-stern picker designs with the wheelhouse mounted on the side of the deck or elevated above the deck on stanchions, with the gillnet reel traveling beneath while going from bow to stern and back again; however, this 32-foot gillnetter is the more conventional stern picker design, with the net set and hauled off the stern.

“That’s his comfort zone,” Peregrine Boats’ Jeff Johnson says of Urie. “It’s how he’s fished all his life.”           

With a beam of 16 foot 6 inches, Johnson says the new gillnetter is a little wider than what he’s previously built. Additional deck space has also been gained by moving the wheelhouse forward more than usual and by recessing the Maritime Fabrication net reel 2 feet 6 inches into the back of the wheelhouse. 

That provides space for an additional fish hold — Johnson thinks the 32-footer will pack a total of 22,000 lbs. — and helps create enough area in the engine room for two 600-hp 8.3 Cummins diesels that are then matched up with Hill Innovations 400 waterjets. Johnson hopes that power package generates high 30-mph speeds. 

A benefit of the Hill Innovations waterjets is they “will plane a lot of weight at lower rpm. You get a lot of weight on step.” Johnson figure that should be “12,000 pounds for sure — hoping to get more than that.”

The 32-foot Peregrine gillnetter was designed to work in shallow water. Johnson describes the hull as having a very shallow-V shape and a very wide bottom that “will comfortably work in 20 inches of water."

There are bunks for four crewmen down below, while the captain’s bunk is upstairs in the wheelhouse. Accommodations include a head, shower and galley.

Coming up next at Peregrine Boats is a double-ended Bristol Bay gillnetter that will have the wheelhouse raised 7 feet above the back deck on stanchions, with the gillnet sliding from bow to stern. 

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Michael Crowley is the former Boats & Gear editor for National Fisherman.

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