“When it’s just us, we stay on the boat, whether on-hook or in the marina,” David says, noting that he appreciates the 345 Conquest’s forward berth and its Dynamic Cabin System, which converts the bed into a dining table via an actuated lift. “It gives you a lot of room down in the cabin when you’ve got people onboard. And it makes for a really nice-sized berth when you’re spending the night. The layout of the boat is best-in-class, as far as I’m concerned.”
The Conquest also facilitates father-son time with Gerrit, who has gotten into fishing and lobstering in the Bahamas and the Keys. “We’re usually snorkeling,” David explains. “We go down there with a measuring stick, find ’em in a hole, stick a hand in, grab it out, measure it and throw it in the boat,” he says of the lobsters.
Both Gerrit and David are also certified to dive, and they often nab the crustaceans on charter-boat scuba excursions. Now that they’re becoming more experienced with their underwater adventures, they plan to use the Whaler. “I think the boat is set up really nicely for diving,” David says.
In addition to seeking out lobster, David and Gerrit like to join up with friends and head to the Abaco Islands or Bimini to target a variety of species, including wahoo, tuna, dolphin ﬁsh, sailﬁsh, snapper, grouper and yellowtail. “The pelagic ﬁshing is really good going oﬀshore here,” David says. “You go to around 600 feet of water and find weeds and birds or schools of baitﬁsh, and you can usually find the type of ﬁsh that you want to bring home.”
When they’re not boating and ﬁshing, the Feltons can be found at any number of musical functions. Both teens attend Dreyfoos School of the Arts, where Gerrit plays the cello and runs track, and Sydney plays the viola. “I’m really proud of them because they work really hard at it,” David says. He works in real estate and operates out of a condo at the marina where he keeps the Whaler, and Nadja works for Tesla.
The West Palm Beach area serves as a jumping-oﬀ point for the whole Felton crew to take day trips to Peanut Island when the mood strikes. Low tide exposes a nice sandbar stretching oﬀ the manmade landmark. “People anchor up there, and you can go walking out,” David says. “You’re knee-deep in the water, and it’s always fun to throw the Frisbee or the football around. It’s perfect to sit down with a cold drink and relax.”
The family uses the boat for quick hits of family time by cruising to waterside eateries in the evenings. A favorite locale includes the downtown Delray Beach area on Atlantic Avenue. “It’s a whole strip of restaurants and bars,” David explains. “And they have a public dock you can pull up to and just get out and walk to dinner.”