Grip and Grin: Secret Trophy

 Guest Blog by Ben Duchesney @ Kayak Angler Mag

A N0-Name Lake Turns Into The New Spot After A Giant Largemouth.

“With spring time bass fishing in full swing, I was a little discouraged this year,” said David Tassos, “because of the rising commitments at work and the worst – my favorite bass honey hole was now protected by 3 gated communities surrounding it on all sides. For the last 6 months I had been searching far and wide for what I hoped would be that next ‘secret spot.’ I had located a no-David Tassos Bass body 1name lake that I was certain didn’t see much pressure and I began doing scouting trips randomly throughout the winter and early spring.

The Turning Point

Several small bass were caught but nothing that made me certain that this lake held the lunkers that I was hunting. Last week after an attempted (and failed) shot at fishing our old lake, my friend Matt and I again hit ‘The Lake’ that was only giving up 1-2 pounders. After four hours of paddling around and only a couple small bites, we were headed back to the truck. Continue reading Grip and Grin: Secret Trophy

Prowler Big Game II Lands At ACK!

The Prowler Big Game II is here!
The Prowler Big Game II is here!

The Prowler Big Game II is here!

Our first shipment of the newly revamped Prowler Big Game II has landed at ACK and I gotta say, this ‘yak is slick! Ocean Kayak has taken a note from sister company Old Town and integrated a number of features from the new Predator kayak into their 2014 version Prowler Big Game II. This includes things like mounting brackets and the high/low Element Seating System.

You can tell right off the bat that this kayak is meant for big stability and comfort. It’s got stern stringers designed to carry volume in the rear of the kayak and plenty of convenient features like the easy to adjust Glide Track foot braces, paddle keepers and new comfort carry handles.

It’s also a ‘yak meant to hold your gear. Between the Mod Pod center hatch and 6 strategically placed mounting brackets, there’s plenty of ways to mount after-market accessories like Scotty, Ram and YakAttack. Couple that with a weight capacity of 550-600 lbs and you can imagine that the Prowler Big Game II will hold just about anything you can think of.

Watch Mike Garcia give a run down of the new Prowler Big Game II at our booth at the Austin Boat Show:

We’ve had pre-orders on this kayak since late last year so quite a few of the ones we got in this first shipment went right out the door. Don’t worry, we’ve still got plenty to ship, so place your order with us today: http://www.austinkayak.com/products/13773/Ocean-Kayak-Prowler-Big-Game-Angler-II-Kayak.html

 

Ocean Kayak Introduces Versatile Big Game II

David Hadden, Brand Director at Ocean Kayak, pulls in a big one on the Big Game II.
David Hadden, Brand Director at Ocean Kayak, pulls in a big one on the Big Game II.

Ocean Kayak has completely revamped their Big Game model for 2014, resulting in the Big Game II which is intended to fish both inshore and offshore.

The changes include the addition of some of the same features found in the new Old Town Predator, like the Element Seating System and the six accessory mounting plates that have been strategically placed around the perimeter of the deck.

What hasn’t changed dramatically is the hull, which still suits paddlers looking for a super stable platform to fish from and offers a very high weight capacity (can hold up to 550-600 lbs!) to handle lots of gear.

The Big Game II also easily accepts a fish finder because of its Transducer-compatible scupper and Mod Pod center hatch cover which allows easy access to the inside of the hull. See more about the specifications below.

The Big Game II
The Big Game II

Specifications:

  • Length: 12′ 9″ (3.9 m)
  • Width: 34″ (86.4 cm)
  • Weight: 70 lb (31.7 kg)
  • Max capacity: 550-600 lb (249.5-272.2 kg)
  • Seat width: 21″ (45.7 cm)
  • Seat height: 15″ (38.1 cm)
  • Legroom: 50″ (127 cm)
  • Bow hatch: 16.5″ x 10.5″ (41.9 x 26.7 cm)
  • Colours: Sand, Urban Camo, Camo and Yellow

The Big Game II is tentatively set to arrive at ACK by the end of December and we are currently taking pre-orders on our first shipment! Place yours now to make sure you’re one of the first to get one. See the product here: http://www.austinkayak.com/products/13773/Ocean-Kayak-Prowler-Big-Game-Angler-II-Kayak.html

Kayak Fishing Personalities Converge for ACK Demo Days in Austin

Meet Big Names of Kayak Fishing at ACK Austin this Weekend

I was scrolling through the list of representatives that we have coming to our ACK Austin store this weekend for Demo Days when I realized how many awesome people we have coming together for this event. If you’re a local Austin paddlers who is looking to further your kayak fishing knowledge and skills, you won’t want to miss this event. Here are some of the people you can expect to see:

Fil (far left) at the Aransas Pass event earlier this month.
Fil (far left) at the Aransas Pass event earlier this month.

Captain Fil Spencer will be here representing Ocean Kayak, Necky and Old Town Canoes and Kayaks to discuss how he utilizes their line-up of different models on the coast. Fil has been a big presence in the IFA Kayak Fishing Tours over the past couple years, placing 3rd in the recent Aransas Pass event and grabbing up the biggest redfish. He’ll be showing off his personal rig, talking about the new Predator kayak and answering any questions you might have about kayak fishing.

Thomas showing off a fly fishing catch.
Thomas showing off a fly fishing catch.

 

 

Husband and wife team, Thomas and Megan Flemons,  run the show at local Austin kayak manufacturer, Diablo Paddlesports, and kayak fly fish in their free time. They will both be out showing off their lineup of ultra stable kayaks, including their new roto-molded Amigo kayak which has been generating some buzz since it was announced a few months back. Thomas will even be holding a “Fly Fishing from a Kayak” clinic Saturday at 10:45 and Sunday at 1:30 PM.

 

Angler Prostaff Ryan McDermid showing off a recent catch.
Angler Prostaff Ryan McDermid showing off a recent catch.

Native Watercraft’s Tom Jester along with angler prostaff Ryan McDermid and Jose Jimenez will be on site and talking about how models like the Manta Ray, Ultimate, Versa Board Angler, Mariner and Slayer serve the different needs of kayak anglers. Don’t expect to see their new Slayer propel or Ultimate FX yet since those aren’t released until later in the year, but they’ll be able to answer any questions you might have about the new models.

 

Joe Poole at giving a clinic at San Marcos earlier this year.
Joe Poole at giving a clinic at San Marcos earlier this year.

Wilderness Systems angler prostaff Joe Poole will once again be on the scene. Joe has been a favorite resource for Demo Day event goers regarding kayak fishing for many years now and operates his GoinCoastal kayak fishing charter service in Corpus Christi. He’ll have his personal rig to show off and will hold Kayak Fishing clinics both Saturday at 1:00 PM and Sunday at 12:45 PM. His clinics have been known to draw a crowd and are not to be missed for those getting started!

 

Cully & Ester from Hobie Kayaks will be on hand to discuss the Pro Angler, changes coming to Hobie models for 2014 and how the Hobie Mirage Drive makes kayak fishing easy. Cully and Ester are long time Hobie veterans and have participated in a wide range of trade shows and events, including the Hobie Fishing World Championships (as staff). See the video below from the beginning of this year where Cully discusses the Pro Angler:

You can also expect to see representatives from companies like Feel Free, Scotty and Optic Nerve who will be sure to have some products on hand that will interest anglers. Hope to see you there!

Hybrid SUP-yak Impresses Casual Paddlers

The Ocean Kayak Nalu began turning heads when it was released about four years ago. Today, this hybrid Kayak-SUP continues to impress those who come across it. Incredibly versatile, the Nalu is meant to offer the best of both worlds with the ability to both sit and stand while you paddle.

Nalu from Ocean Kayak
The Nalu 12.5

Over the years the Nalu has become popular among casual, recreational paddlers just looking to have some fun in either position. A big point of interest has been the price, which is relatively low for typical SUP board. To top it off, we at ACK offer a package deal involving the Nalu which couples the board/kayak with a paddle and leash for some great savings. A recent reviewer going by the name “Beach Bum” submitted this lengthy review sharing his very positive experience with our packaged Nalu 12.5:

A great package deal.
A great package deal.

“I wanted both a kayak and SUP but didn’t want spend $,2000 for both.  Then I came across the Nalu Hybrid.  At first, I couldn’t believe that you could have the best of both worlds with one product without a lot of compromise.  I spent hours scouring the web for reviews and more information.  The more I checked the more I was convinced that this may be the perfect product for people who recreationally enjoy both kayaking and paddle boarding.  I purchased this product around a year ago and let me tell you that I could not have been happier and the price for the package deal at ACK is was one of the best values around.  I use it all the time in the creeks and ocean.  It is very stable and works as expected as a kayak or SUP.  Not sure if they still make the smaller version but I would recommend the larger size of 12.5 which is still very maneuverable and glides nicely.  Enjoy!” – Beach Bum

See more about the Nalu in this video from Ocean Kayak:

Johnson Outdoors’ New Adventure Team Website Coming Soon

AdventureOnTheWater.com is coming soon.
AdventureOnTheWater.com is coming soon.

Johnson Outdoors, makers of Old Town, Necky and Ocean Kayak, will be releasing a new website called AdventureOnTheWater.com that will act as a platform to showcase what their Pro Staff and Adventure Team Members are up to. It will feature photos, videos, personal kayak rigs of the teams, events and much more! While the date for the official launch is not yet released, we are still very excited about this upcoming outlet and expect it to be full of great information for anyone interested in the Johnson family of brands. Be sure to stay tuned for more!

Take Charge of Spring with Savings from Johnson Outdoors

Details about the Ocean Kayak Promotion
Details about the Ocean Kayak Promotion

Spring means it’s time to get out on the water and we are very excited to pass on a special promotion to help you do just that! From May 3rd through June 2nd when you purchase an new & eligible Ocean Kayak, Old Town or Necky kayak you will receive a $50 or $100 Visa® Cash Card. This is a great opportunity to get the family their first kayaks or even to just expand the fleet!

To qualify for this offer, you will need to mail in a copy of your ACK receipt showing the eligible kayak purchase(s) as well as a completed offer redemption form (see below). The offer ends June 2nd, so keep in mind that this opportunity will not last forever!

Eligible Ocean Kayaks at ACK.com to receive a $50 Visa® Cash Card: Venus 11Tetra 10Tetra 12Trident Ultra 4.7Trident Ultra 4.3Trident 15Trident 13Trident 11, Torque, Frenzy & Malibu 2XL. For more details, click here.

Eligible Necky Kayaks at ACK.com to receive a $100 Visa® Cash Card: Looksha 14, Chatham 16, Chatham 17, Eliza, Elias, Vector 13 & Vector 14. For more details, click here.

Eligible Old Town Kayaks at ACK.com to receive a $50 Visa® Cash Card : Heron and Twin Heron. For more details, click here.

To download the redemption form, click here.

Show Season Encore!

ACK at the Austin Boat Show

We had a blast this year at the various Texas Boat Shows. We loaded up our kayaks and displayed them proudly alongside hundreds of motorized boats in Houston, Austin and San Antonio throughout the month of January. Well, we had so much fun that we decided we wanted some more opportunities to show off our stuff! That’s right, you’ll have an opportunity to come talk with our store experts and experience our unique displays at two more shows before the ACK show season is officially over. So if you find yourself in Austin or Houston during either of these events in March be sure to stop by and say hi!

Austin Home & Garden Show: March 1st – 3rd at the Austin Convention Center
Info: http://www.austinhomeandgardenshow.com
ACK Booth Sponsored by Hobie 

Houston Fishing Show: March 6th – 10th at the George R Brown Convention Center
Info: http://www.houstonfishingshow.com
ACK Booth Sponsored by Ocean Kayak

Google+ Hangout: How to- Hatch Install

We’re having a lot of fun with our Google+ Hangouts and Monday night’s was no exception. ACK’s Chris Hackerd took viewers through the installation process for a large hatch and a 6 inch round hatch with a cat bag on an Ocean Kayak’s Venus 11. Even if you own another boat, this how-to should come in handy if you chose to make the installs yourself. If you’ve ever been hesitant, there’s no better time to learn than now! While the live event has since passed, you can view the video of the Hangout right here! We will certainly keep you informed and up-to-date about our next Hangout and are happy to take suggestions for future Hangout topics.

Trent @ ACK

Top 10 Kayaks For Cold Weather Paddling

A few months back, I wrote a short piece that caused a bit of a stir. Apparently “storing your kayak for the winter” didn’t resound well with many, especially those residing in more temperate regions (tongue in cheek of course). But the reality for many is that the idea of putting a kayak out of commission for a few months is unheard of because of either mild winters or the utilization paddling gear designed for cold weather paddling. I recouped some of the fury through a visual presentation highlighting cold weather paddling apparel and now, in an effort to continue this positive momentum, I’d like to offer some recommendations on kayaks that are ideal for paddling during the coldest months of the year.

The concept actually, is simple — get a kayak with a combination of a higher freeboard (hull that remains out of the water while paddling) and elevated seat that will stay dry or a kayak with a cockpit that can be fully or partially covered by a skirt. Continue reading Top 10 Kayaks For Cold Weather Paddling