Kayaks have been used as a means of transportation for years, but now more and more individuals are discovering that kayaking is a perfect way of fishing. The idea of gliding across the lake to hidden spots as you fish is the reason why kayak fishing has become quite popular. A kayak can get into hidden fishing spots that can’t be easily accessed by motorboats. Therefore, if accessing shallow or narrow fishing areas with your big boat is a problem, you should try kayak fishing. Kayak fishing is also perfect for people who love fishing alone in the water. So, if you want to learn more about kayak fishing, please read on.
Tips for Beginner Kayak Fisherman
With the different types of fishing kayaks in the market, choosing the right vessel for a beginner can be quite challenging. So, before you even think about buying a kayak, you should know where you will be fishing. Other essential things that you must consider when selecting a kayak include storage compartments, comfortable seating, and stability of the vessel. A good novice kayak should be comfortable and easy to use. So make sure you visit any kayak festival near you and learn more about the kayak, before finally selecting your kayak. You can also contact a local dealer who will allow you to try different kayaks before purchasing.
Selecting a Paddle
Selecting a good paddle is nearly as crucial as picking the right novice kayak. A proper paddle should allow you to paddle comfortably. Therefore, when looking for a paddle, you should consider its overall length. The recommended length of paddle is determined by your paddling style, the width of your kayak, and your height. Tall people need longer paddles, especially when kayaking with narrower vessels. Remember, the wider the vessel, the longer your paddle should be.
Where to Fish
A kayak is a versatile vessel that can access all the fishing spots in an ocean, lake, or river. Therefore, your choice of fishing spots will depend on your kayaking ability, time frame, and paddling distance. Kayaking can be an excellent workout, and just like in most sports, age isn’t an issue in kayaking. However, smart fishing can catch you more fish than paddling farther or fishing harder. Proper planning can make up for poor paddling ability and also lack of time. So, use maps when you plan to fish in unfamiliar territories. Always select circular kayaking routes for more fishing opportunities.
Customize the Kayak
Whether you have purchased a new boat or you are using an old one, you will want to customize it, if you’re going to enjoy kayaking. Most kayaks come with several fish-friendly features such as storage, a cooler, anchors, paddle holder, and a comfortable backrest. Therefore, the most challenging thing about customizing your boat is putting all the fishing accessories that you will need while kayaking within reach. You must plan for maximum storage and determine the potential attachment spots on the vessel. You should also determine the storage place for your gears, but remember, kayak anglers should always travel light.
Transporting the Kayak
One of the best things about kayaks is that it does not have to be trailed every time you are carrying it from your home to the lake. You can carry it on your vehicle, but make sure it is well-cushioned, especially when traveling a long distance. If your car doesn’t have a roof rack, you can purchase a soft rack. Soft racks can be inflatable, or foam and they are the cheapest solutions for transporting kayaks. If your vehicle has factory-mounted crossbars, you can add pads to prevent the kayak from being damaged.
Another method of transportation is by using a bigger vessel. Carrying your kayak on your big boat is the best way to access distant waters. If your kayak is too heavy, you can get a cart to help you transport it from one place to another. A couple of wheels can convert your boat into a wagon for carrying all your fishing gear.
Learn the Ropes
Kayak fishing can be quite challenging for beginners and experienced fishermen who use motorboats. So, try and learn the different fishing techniques from the experienced individuals at the local kayaking clubs. You can also hire a guide, but remember to inform him/her that you are a beginner. The guide can help you with boat positioning, paddling, and even fishing. Contact the local kayak dealer and find out if they offer training or know of an experienced trainer.
Fighting a Fish From Your Kayak
Your kayak can be a great drag system for the reel; however, even a strong 5-pound fish can drag your boat around. If your fishing tackle is too light, you should increase the line capacity for a longer run. Remember, a fish can find it hard to break the line, if your reaction is slow or the drag is too tight. So, make sure you have the right combination of line, reel, and rod to use for a specific condition or fish species. A good 20-pound line should allow your vessel to be towed for hours without the fish breaking the line.
Watch out for Other Boats
Always estimate the amount of time it will take you to cross a big waterway, even before you start crossing. Look out for other vessels that are moving at very high speeds and tanker ships. Tanker ships are huge, and they can create large waves that can knock you off your kayak. Remember to punch through a strong wave; you must paddle directly towards it with as much force as possible.
Always Carry Safety Gear
Safety should be the most crucial item on your list since it’s going to save you in case of an emergency. So, other than checking the weather conditions before kayaking, make sure you have the right safety gear. Kayak fishing can be quite dangerous, especially for beginners, so make sure you have a personal flotation device. Other safety items that you should carry include a first aid kit, emergency repair kit, a headlamp, gloves, flares, a whistle, a fishing rod leash, and a paddle leash.