You have finally decided to start kayak fishing. Many of us have had to learn the hard way and figure out what we need by being without. We want to help out those just getting into the sport to help save them a few headaches. Here are some things you will need to get started.


If you haven’t gotten a kayak yet I highly recommend you demo as many as possible before purchasing if possible. If you don’t have access to doing demo’s, then purchase a kayak that will work for where you will be fishing 90% of the time. Will this be lakes, rivers, creeks, marsh, or open ocean? 


As far as what other equipment you need here are some must-haves.


  1. You have to have a PFD/life jacket, it’s the law. I always wear my PFD while on the water. During the summer time here in Texas I prefer an inflatable PFD. It’s lightweight and not as hot during the summer months. During the winter months, depending on how much I have to wear, I will sometimes wear a larger PFD with more pockets & storage. Just make sure whatever you go with it is comfy while sitting in the kayak. ALWAYS WEAR YOUR PFD!!!


  1. Pick a good paddle. A paddle will be one of the things you hold all day and getting one that fits, is strong and lightweight, can make a big difference out on the water. I prefer a paddle that is adjustable so I can use it for different kayaks. The Werner Paddle Shuna: Hooked adjustable. I use a 240-260cm because I can adjust the paddle length. This allows me to use the paddle in my SlayerMax when needed by adjusting the length to 255cm or if I’m in my Hobie Outback I can set it to 245cm when needed. I’ve also used this paddle on a Bonafide SS127 and a Wilderness Systems ATAK or Radar.

Werner Paddle Shuna: Hooked

  1. If you plan on fishing in low light or at night you are required to have a 360 degree light. You don’t want to get hit by a boat cruising by not knowing that you are there. I use the YakAttack VisiCarbon Pro. This light will mount in the gear track of the kayak so no drilling required.

    YakAttack VisiCarbon Pro


  1. Rod/tackle holder. For this I like the BlackPak from YakAttack. It holds more than enough tackle and has 3 rod holders. I normally carry only 4 rods with me so I have one in hand and 3 in the rod holders. There are plenty of other options out there including making one from a milk crate.

    YakAttack BlackPak
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Now you are ready to hit the water. Of course there are lots of other things you can add like cockpit lights from YakPower, a fishfinder, or even wheels to help get the kayak to the water. But before your start adding a lot of stuff to your kayak I would take it out a few times to see how and where you might put things. The last thing you want to do is mount something in the wrong spot. ACK carries everything you need to get started and a lot more once you decide what else you would like to add. If you have any questions please let us know. We are here to help.


ACK Fishing Team Member

Bobby Clark