How to Keep Your Otter Lightweight

 Here’s the bare-bones XT Cabin in an X-Over. Adding some lightweight accessories to it really extends the fishability of this house!  Photo Credit - Ben Larson - In-Depth Media Productions

Here’s the bare-bones XT Cabin in an X-Over. Adding some lightweight accessories to it really extends the fishability of this house!

Photo Credit - Ben Larson - In-Depth Media Productions

Kyle S. asks:

Hey Joel, I’m moving from a hub to a flip over. I’m looking at the new xover pro cabin. Besides hyfax and a cover, what are must haves for the sled? Sportsman caddy? Led light? Cargo bin? Thanks! I’ll be moved by human power so trying to stay light as can be.

Great question Kyle, and good choice as the Otter X-over series is lightest in class among comparably sized flip-style shelters.

The Pro is nice with the bucket seats, but the XT will offer some weight savings and I actually prefer the bench personally. Don't worry about the hyfax, at least initially. Unless traveling consistently over gravel, ramp concrete, or ground, I've found that they're a nice accessory but you can do without if looking to shave weight. Not to mention, you can always add later.

Consider shaving out the caddy as well. Though it’s one of my favorite accessories, you won’t use it on an XT series anyway as there’s no center aluminum bar to connect it to. That said, make sure you have a hitch and hitch pivot (for the times you WILL have access to snowmobile/atv).

Instead of the caddy, I'd get both the 3 pocket cargo net and the overhead storage net, along with shelter hooks - all of which are nearly weightless. I equip every house I own with them, as they’re nearly essential for the way I fish. It just so happens you can do so with little weight being added. The 3 pocket cargo net holds supplies of all kinds (some of the stuff I’d have in the caddy). The overhead storage net is so incredibly nice for drying gloves, hats, etc. The shelter hooks I use as rod holders, and more importantly, in the back high corners of the shelter as a place to hang up the jackets we wear outside but are more comfortable without when fishing inside.


The LED light kit is awesome, but the battery to power it will cost you some weight, and you'll already be adding an auger, heater, rods, electronics, etc. I'd say to start here, and add other items later if you feel you need them.

Joel