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Rigging A #Kayak For Serious Sport #Fishing
Posted by Richard Phillips   •   Sunday, 2015-October-18

Setting up for kayak fishing really allows you to enjoy the sport to its fullest. There’s an understandable joy in hooking into a great fish and having everything you need from secure rod holders to landing equipment and storage right at your fingertips. Making your kayak such a joy to fish from takes a bit of planning but goes a long way in making your experience a positive one!

As in fishing from a boat, kayak fishing comprises a wide spectrum of different techniques, gear, and rigs reflecting the method of fishing as well as the personal preferences of the angler. Due to the rapid popularity that kayak fishing has experienced in recent years, many kayak manufacturers offer specially-equipped “fishing models” featuring built-in rod holders, compartments, and layouts especially suited to the kayak angler.

For starters, the most popular fishing kayaks are those with a forward compartment for dry storage and a rear tank-well, or deck recess, that allows for placement of tackle equipment like a crate with rod holders, bait tanks, or fish bags. My kayak is an Ocean Kayak Scupper Pro TW.

Rudder or No-Rudder?

The jury is out on the necessity for a rudder but I find a rudder invaluable when trying to paddle against adverse winds or currents. Additionally, I thoroughly enjoy working my rudder to “follow” the fish as I’m fighting it… and they will pull you! Despite the potential for snagging my line on the rudder, the benefit of increased efficiency when conditions worsen well outweighs the negatives for installing a rudder.

Starting at the bow, I’d recommend bungee lashings, or “bungee trees” as they’re usually called. These serve as a paddle holder and allow you to stow your paddle in an instant, a handy feature to have when you get a strike. My kayak is equipped with bungee trees on the bow and in the cockpit the latter which conveniently holds my tackle box right in front of me.

If you’re thinking positive (and you should be!) you need to have something to land and store your catch. For smaller fish a landing net will do and for larger fish a gaff would be more appropriate. Some folks keep a catch bag in their hull which requires opening up the hatch to place their catch into the bag. My preference is an insulated bag which I store in the rear tank-well. This setup is very different from our mainland counterparts most of whom tend to utilize the aft space on their kayaks for storing crates with rod-holders and/or live bait buckets.

Kayak fishing in Hawaii involves quite simply, bottom-fishing, trolling, whipping (bait-casting), or jigging. I do very little bottom fishing or whipping (casting) from my kayak as I really enjoy the constant movement that trolling offers, not to mention the simplicity of rig that we use!

In setting up for bottom fishing, whipping, and jigging there really is no special set-up as all that you really need is a floating platform from which to deploy your line. It’s a good idea to get a drift chute which can significantly reduce your drift while doing any of these stationary fishing methods. I rig a bridle, formed by joining the bowline and a line fastened behind me, that holds the chute amidships so it holds my kayak perpendicular to the direction of the current or wind, whichever might be pushing me away from the area I’d like to remain in.

Rod Holders – In Front or Behind?

For trolling, my rod holders are set up in the front of the cockpit. This is probably the biggest difference from many of our mainland kayak fishing colleagues who seem to prefer placing their rod holders in back of their seats. I prefer being able to watch the tip of my pole as I’m trolling as frequently, smaller fish will shred the bait without taking pulling on the line for the ratchet to sound. When a fish does hit, the transition from paddling to setting the hook is one smooth transition as I quickly place the paddle in the bow lashing then grab my rod.

When placing your rod holders in front of you, be sure to check your maximum forward extension when paddling so as to assure you won’t hit the rod holders or rods when stretching forward in your stroke.

Wherever you decide to place your rod holders, be sure to include a safety line to your reels to prevent losing them in the event you capsize or if the rod holders should fail. On three occasions (I’d rather not talk about how…) I flipped my kayak and, if not for the safety lines would have lost my favorite Penn Reel and rod! On another occasion, having insufficiently tightened the nut on my rod holder, my entire rod holder gave way when a fish hit and my reel and rod went right into the water, thankfully, only as far as the safety line.

Tackle Box & Landing Tackle

My preference is to keep things as simple as possible and the size of my tackle box (about 5”x 8”) probably reflects that. All of my lures and pre-set leaders are stored in this small waterproof box that’s strapped into the bungee cords right in front of me. A long nose pliers hangs off the side of my seat so I don’t have to go fumbling for it when I’ve got a twenty pound fish struggling in my lap or thrashing about on the side of the kayak.

Depending on where we’re fishing, I would either have a gaff or landing net and, often, I’ll stick them in the extra rod holder for convenience.

Fishfinders & VHS Radios

An increasing number of fishing kayaks are being rigged with fishfinders that are water-resistant and very well-suited to kayak fishing needs. One of our buddies has a fishfinder on his kayak and he swears by it! You can choose from a portable fishfinder that allows for the needed transducer to be mounted with a suction cup or doing a permanent mount that requires epoxying the transducer to the hull. As of yet, I haven’t outfitted my kayak with a fishfinder but I’m getting awfully tempted!

Of course, while we’re on the subject of electronics, a good investment would also be a VHS two-way-radio so you have both boat to boat and coast guard emergency channel access. Submersible handheld VHS radios are available nowadays starting at around $170 and up.

Take some time to set up your kayak and when the day comes when you get the strike of your life, all the little details will pay off in making your experience the all that it should be.

Tight lines!

Source: Free Articles from

ABOUT THE AUTHOR The author, Richard Young, is an avid kayak fisherman in Hawaii and features Kayak Fishing on his website,
#KayakFishing Tips And Tricks
Posted by Richard Phillips   •   Saturday, 2015-October-17
by James King

Kayak fishing is a unique sport that mixes the exhilarating thrills of catching a fish using the agility and maneuverability of a kayak. Unlike most boats, kayaks are sufficiently small to fit into coves along with other tight spaces, giving you a benefit that's sure to help you land some fish. With that in mind, kayak fishing isn't an easy sport at all. If you want to experience any level of success on the water, you must follow some fundamental rules.

Kayak fishing is a growing sport, which is now attracting a lot of attention in terms of of tournament fishing. Kayakers are competing on fresh and saltwater, and there's a load of gear available. You will find specialized fishing kayaks and enough equipment to trick them out just like a professional bass boat.

Fixing frayed ends on deck lines

Larger rope could be "whipped" by wrapping the fraying ends having a thinner, but strong, durable line. You may also melt the end of nylon or plastic rope to help keep ends from fraying. Another handy way, and something that works on nylon strap ends, too, would be to dip the end in that liquid rubber stuff accustomed to re-coat tools. It's available at most hardware stores. You dip the finish into the coating, let it harden and, voila, you've got a durable and non-fraying end.

Signal Whistles

Have to shout? Save your voice, have a whistle with you at all times. Buy several and set them in several places inside your gear, in your clothing, but NEVER attach it towards the zipper on your PFD! It's unsafe and marks you like a major rookie.

Dry Bag Parado

a dry bag keeps things dry, because they should. However, if you put only one little item inside a dry bag which contains moisture - it will cause all things in that €dry€ bag to become damp! Make certain what goes in the dry bag is dry.

Bearing the night time before

If you tend to overnight on islands or across channels and don't often carry a chart, decide in which you want to reach the other shoreline, and have a bearing the night before when you are able still see. Then when the morning fog obscures your view, you have a reliable bearing to guide you for your desired end point on the other hand.

Barbless hooks

Things happen pretty fast when Kayak Fishing from the To help release fish quickly, for either catch-and-release, or perhaps a quick drop into the boat, consider pinching the barbs smooth in your hooks. It makes removing them easy - and adds a little of a challenge while retrieving the issue as well. Barbless is also much quicker and fewer painful to remove should you catch yourself.

About the Author i am writing about Kayak Fishing Tips
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