What’s a Fishing Kayak?

Are you intimidated by the thought of fishing from a kayak? Then you’ll be very glad to know that kayaks designed for fishing have evolved, are very, very easy to use and safe. Throughout the past decade, manufacturers have been designing and building kayaks with a fisherman’s needs in mind. The resulting crafts are remarkably stable and comfortable too, hence, they are called fishing kayak. Finding the best fishing kayaks for your needs can be a daunting task, but with proper knowledge about their features, specifications, and other important details can make things easier.

Paul with Redfish caught in a kayak
Paul caught a Redfish in a kayak.

All fishing kayaks come with rod holders while there are some that also comes with tackle hatches, anchor systems, fish finders and even live wells to keep your bait and/or caught fish alive. With so many options available, you’re sure to find the best fishing kayak for your specific needs.

sit-on-top fishing kayak
A sit-on-top kayak.
man gets the best fishing kayak for his needs
A sit-inside kayak.
an outrigger fishing kayak
Super stable outrigger Kayak becomes a freakin’ rocket, when the need comes to get up and go.

Sit-On-Top Kayaks VS Sit-Inside Kayaks?

If you’re going saltwater fishing, sit-on-top kayaks are safer. They can give you more room to move around and balance your legs when landing a fish. On the other hand, if you are going to fish in moving waters, a sit-inside Kayak is your better choice – as they are lighter and can provide a drier experience than a sit-on-top Kayak.

The humongous advantage of kayaks in general as a fishing platform is that in both ‘fresh’ and ‘salt’ water, you can ‘quietly’ go where fish feed in very shallow creeks and inlets… because, kayaks offer a shallow draft that will get you to places other boats simply can’t go… so you can catch those MONSTERS. For these reasons and more, kayaks are becoming hugely popular.

Size: Depending on size, a Kayak can accommodate ‘one’ to ‘three’ people.

Choosing the Best Fishing Kayak for You

There is no perfect kayak for everyone, but by knowing your fishing needs, you can easily find your perfect Kayak. In identifying what kind of Kayak you’ll need, you need to initially decide where and for what you will use it.

Kayak may be ‘tricked out’ to satisfy your specific needs and or desires.

Are you going to fish in freshwater ponds, or will you be navigating streams and rivers, or will you use your Kayak in the OCEAN? Take the time to know what you’re going to do with your kayak, so that you can choose your perfect Kayak and accessories… including sonar and underwater video; which will enable you to pursue and catch more fish in general and ‘ONLY’ the specific species you want to catch.

kayak for sailing
Kayakers can sail.

Plus, you also need to determine if you’re going to use it strictly for fishing or if you’re also going to use it for relaxation and recreation with your family? Asking yourself these questions will allow you to choose a perfect kayak that will suit your needs.

Before you purchase a fishing Kayak, it is important to know that you have the ability to ‘demo’ or to ‘rent’ a Kayak. Try them out, so that you may see which specifically fits your needs. By having hands-on experience you can easily and intelligently determine which Kayak is best for you.

But to effectively choose a Kayak, you must know some of the technical terms to look for. It’s like choosing a car – you must know what specifications or features you are looking for. Here are some items to look for, when choosing a fishing Kayak.

Propulsion. Kayaks can be subdivided into three categories: paddle power, pedal power and electric power. Generally, pedal-powered kayak should be your choice, as they free up your hands for fishing.

kayak motor
An Electric Kayak Motor

More and more, electric motor powered fishing kayaks are being sold and will dominate the Kayak market soon.

Step by step, how to ADD batteries, an electric motor & a fish finder to your ‘dream’ Kayak.

Length. Longer kayaks can cover larger distances ‘easier’ than shorter ones with paddle power or pedal power. Pedal power however, is harder to maneuver in tight spaces is heavier and can be hard to carry to launch sites.

Width. Wider Kayaks are more stable and they can contain greater capacity, but know that width alone isn’t a sufficient factor in determining the overall stability of a Kayak.

Weight. Things to consider here is your car top capacity (size & weight) and how much you personally can carry. If you choose a heavy Kayak, you might need a wheeled cart to carry it to the launch site.

Storage and Extras. How much storage will you need aboard your Kayak? Will you keep fish? Will you bring a change of clothing, or do you need a live bait storage?

Seats. Nowadays, most fishing Kayaks offer adjustable seats with back support.

Standing & Fishing Capability. Extra-wide and stable Kayaks allow anglers to stand and sight cast to fish in the shallows.