by Cody Taylor member of the Northern California/Lake Tahoe chapter

Early in 1984 we realized that our 16′ boat on Clear Lake, California’s largest fresh water lake, was just not working. The lake was huge and the waves kicked up in the afternoon and would wash over the bow of our little boat threatening to swamp her. So we set out to attend the annual boat show at the Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles in search of a new boat.

The mission of finding a more suitable boat for our family and a list of features in hand found several that were just right. We settled on an Apache manufactured in Auburn, California at a private boat building company. On site we were able to customize the cuddy cabin in the lower cabin with a V queen size bed, lots of storage, a hatch and two bench seats under windows. Up top two separate front/back chairs and two buddy seats on each side of the engine house. We chose upholstery and color combinations and exterior colors. We chose the engine, powered by a 1984 Chevy Corvette small block engine driving a Volvo 280 Stern Drive with an 18″ stainless steel blade prop. An honest 60mph boat.

And then the scary part. We left a large check with the owner for the purchase of the engine and nothing but paper work to go home with. The boat was done in June, 1984 and the manufacturer delivered it to central California and our driveway. Totally exciting, bigger than we had thought, beautiful. We had to buy a new vehicle to tow it, it was a learning curve to tow a bigger boat. And we took that boat everywhere.

She laughed at the waves on Clear Lake, plowed right through,very sea worthy. We took it to Bass Lake and learned how to park a big closed bow boat in boat slips. Our kids wondered whether dad would ever learn how to do that. The 4th of July at Bass Lake and in the boat parade preceding the fireworks.

Then our kids started to drive it and filling it with their friends. We would sit on shore and watch it go by with 2 kids, then back with 6 kids, then we wouldn’t see it again until time to park it in it’s slip. The boat has been garage housed, covered and has never been in salt water. We have never seen another boat like it.

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