by Rex Lytle, Inland Empire chapter

My love of wood boats started when I was a child and my dad owned a small Wolverine wood fishing boat that was probably 14 feet long. In the early 2000 my wife and I purchased a 1961 Chris-Craft Continental wood boat at an estate auction.

Every time we took it out we could plan on spending $1,000.00 on repairs because we would find something new that was wrong with it. We almost sunk it once because we hadn’t soaked the wood up enough. We finally ended up putting a fiberglass bottom on it. Needless to say we didn’t own the boat long. The name of that boat was The Rose. We had entered The Rose in the Payette Lakes Boat show two times and had seen a beautiful newly restored 1946 Chris-Craft Runabout Deluxe that was a dark burgundy color. In 1946 wood boats were made out of a different kind of wood resulting in the darker color than most wood boats.

Several people including myself asked the owner if it was for sale and were told no it was not for sale. Fast forward several years later and my wife and I were driving through McCall, Idaho where the annual Payette Lakes wood boat show was in progress and that beautiful boat was sitting on a trailer just across from the show location with a for sale sign in the window. We turned around and got the information from the window and called the number. In talking to the owner we found out that it had been sitting in storage since we had seen it last and had not been used at all, so we ended up buying it.

Since they had not named it after the restoration, we had a blank slate. We liked the name The Rose from the first boat so we decided to name this new one Burgundy Rose because of the dark color. Since we owned a sign company we did the name in 23 Carat gold. The following year we entered the Payette Lakes Boat show in McCall and won the Runabout division. Since then our children and grandchildren have moved to northern Idaho and we now have a second home in Sandpoint, so we transferred our membership to Inland Empire Chapter and someday hope to show it at Sandpoint.


  1. Rex, always enjoyed having you and your boats in McCall at the Payette Lakes boat show. Have fun with the family in Sandpoint and I hope our paths cross again some day.

  2. Beautiful boat, and beautiful lake! McCall boat works completely refurbished my grandpas 1950 Mercury that ran on that lake for years!

  3. Having collected and refinished antique furniture for years, I know a bit about woods and stains. At a gentleman’s racer show on Lake George a couple of years ago, I was admiring an obviously very expensive custom racer but couldn’t get over the hue of the wood. I finally asked the owner if it was walnut? He grimaced and said “no, it’s mahogany” (you idiot). So being curious, I followed up by asking him what shade of stain was used to promote the rather yellow tone of the wood, and he didn’t answer. I’ll never know, but I’ll take the red or burgundy any day! Handsome!

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