You’ve got the basics, kick it up a notch with gear that’ll provide a more enjoyable kayak fishing experience.
It’s no revelation that Kayak Fishing has become one of the fastest growing segments within the paddling industry during the past decade. This notable trend has resulted in an influx of paddling gear — some made specifically for fishing and other for paddling in general but nevertheless, sparked by the growth of kayak fishing. Most paddlers, angler or not, are already familiar with the kayak fishing basics, rod holders, anchors and paddle leashes but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We wanted to highlight a few items including some that you may have never considered or maybe just wondered why someone would need them.
Drift Chutes – When it comes to fishing, we all know that covering every possible point along the way is important. If you are free floating in windy conditions or fast moving water, you’ll probably miss out on multiple “fish on” opportunities. On the flipside, if anchored down, you’ll be wasting a lot of time in one spot, much of it retrieving and setting your anchor. Why not slow the pace a bit so that you can not only focus on reaching all the right spots but also have time to change lures, drink coffee, post the sunrise picture you just took on Facebook — you know, all the other stuff one does when kayak fishing. When you deploy a drift chute from your kayak you create steady and consistent drag so you can focus on what matter most. Click to view drift chutes.
Knives – Not just any knife but one that is easily accessible. Too often, paddlers are caught in a situation where cutting a line, whether anchor or fishing, may have saved a person from a bad situation. Keeping a knife in your tackle box, kayak hatch or dry bag renders it useless in an emergency situation so consider a knife that safely attaches to your PFD or other clothing item. In other words, make sure the knife stays with you even if your boat doesn’t. Click to view knives.
Wading Belts – One of many things that anglers who wade or paddle have in common is their ability to get into places most boats can’t. While some paddlers opt to simply stay put in their kayaks, many have caught on to the idea of wading after reaching a particular destination, especially when fishing in shallow waters or fly-fishing. For me personally, it’s just nice to be able to get out and stretch while I continue fishing. Think convenience and keep a wading belt handy just in case you decide to anchor down and do some wade fishing. In fact, keep a slimmed down version of your fishing arsenal packed away in the belt — no sense in wasting any time when fishing. Click to view wading belts.
Camera Mounts – You’ve been there, the catch of a lifetime, you yell out of excitement only to find that all of your friends are nowhere to be seen, someone needs to take a picture and it’s all up to you. Install a camera mount on your kayak and position your point and shoot waterproof camera ready for action. I always take a quick snapshot before I head out to make sure it is positioned correctly and if you have the option, leave it on the “timer” setting so that all you have to do is turn it, click and strike a pose. Oh, and make sure you hold the fish away from your body and closer to the camera so that it appears bigger than it really is. Click to view camera mounts.
Traction Pads – One of the greatest things about kayak fishing is that if you remain silent, you can get within a few feet of the fish. However, you’ll also spook them with even the slightest bump on your kayak. Install traction pads in or around areas that you typically bump or around any flat decking to not only reduce noise but also help provide some traction if standing or getting in and out of your kayak. Click to view traction pad kits.
Emergency Paddles – This recommendation actually comes from my own personal account. When a fish catches you by surprise, which is usually the case, what do you do first? Secure your paddle? Chances are you simply layout across your lap without regard to the fact that you may loose it and end up #$@% creek without a paddle. Even if you use a paddle leash, I recommend you carry a back up emergency paddle. I actually secure mine to the inside of my kayak hull along with a small emergency kit and never take them out, unless of course I need to use them. Click to view emergency paddles.
So again, just few highlighted items. I invite you to browse our full line of kayak fishing gear and while you are at it, if you have any recommendations that you’d like to share with our readers or something you’d like to see us carry, please do comment below.