Rules When Getting Started in Kayak Fishing (and a good reminder for those that have been in the game for a while!)

Kayak fishing continues to grow in popularity and as it does, more and more people wonder what the sport and community are all about. If you’re interested in getting started in kayak fishing, it’s important to know a few tips and tricks that can help you while you’re out on the water.

Photo taken by Chris Funk
Photo taken by Chris Funk

Wear weather appropriate clothes! It is important that you wear the appropriate clothes while out for a day of fishing. As everyone knows, the weather can be very unpredictable and it is important to be prepared. It also doesn’t hurt to have quick-dry clothes in the chance that you flip your kayak and go for a little swim with the fish.

Noah Heck wearing a Kokatat PFD
Noah Heck wearing a Kokatat PFD

Along with weather appropriate clothes, a PFD (personal flotation device) is a must have. As a general paddling rule, you should always wear a PFD while you’re out on the water – no matter how much you think you won’t need one. In addition to the weather, losing your balance can be unpredictable. Fishing kayaks are made to be more stable – so stable that you can stand and fish on them – but that doesn’t mean that a slight tip can’t put you over the edge of the boat.  

As always, whether you are kayak fishing or just paddling along, always remember to leave no trace. It is important that we keep our waters clean and as we found them. Even better, if possible leave the waters you fish cleaner than when you first entered them. It’s always a good idea if you have room to carry an extra plastic bag (or something that you can collect things in) to store litter in and dispose of it properly once you’re off the water.

Photo taken by JK Media House
Photo taken by JK Media House

More often than not, we see that kayak fishermen are fishermen first, and paddlers second. We believe proper paddling techniques are vital to your success as a kayak fishermen. If you have proper paddling techniques, you will be able to get to key fishing spots quicker, quieter, and more efficiently. It is important to learn a few key strokes such as the forward stroke and the draw stroke, as well as proper techniques as a whole that will help you not only catch fish, but also out of tough situations if necessary.

Recently the buzz in the kayak fishing industry has been about pedal drives. Although pedal drives may be able to propel you further and at a quicker rate, it is still important to carry and use a paddle. There are many situations that a paddle is necessary to navigate tougher waters such as off-shore, in quick-moving rivers, or in areas that boat wake is formed. A paddle will give you more stability and control over your kayak and all of the gear you have stored with you for the trip.

With the kayak fishing industry constantly evolving and developing, one of the most important “rules” for kayak fishing is to share your knowledge and expertise with others. The kayak fishing community is truly unique and welcoming to anyone that is wanting to join, and the community itself is full of anglers that want to share their knowledge. As much as you want to know, they want to share what types of baits they’re using, what boat they have, what type of paddle they have, what waters they’re fishing, and so on. Our advice would be to be open to new ideas for trips, gear, and techniques – and on the other side of that, don’t forget to share what you use, where you fish, and your own experiences!

Photo taken by JK Media House
Photo taken by JK Media House