Welcome to our comprehensive guide page to kayak fishing accessories.
In recent years sport fishing from kayaks has become a popular activity for anglers in both fresh and salt water, especially in warmer regions. Kayaks are inexpensive to purchase and have few maintenance costs, in addition to requiring very little space to store and the ease with which one can be launched.
Many kayak dealers in the U.S. have started to customize kayaks for fishing, building them with kayak fishing accessories that share many of the same characteristics and functions as those on boats, but with the limitations of a kayak in mind and include such things as anchor trolleys, rod holders, electronic fish-finders, equipment mounts and live-bait containers.
Essential Kayak Fishing Gear for a Safe Expedition
In your kayak fishing gear bag, you should include a helmet, a flotation device and a spray skirt. The spray skirt is meant to avert any water from getting into your kayak. Remember that if water were to get into the kayak, it is more at a risk of sinking and less maneuverable.
The helmet is meant to protect the kayaker from head injuries. These injuries can be caused by hard objects such as rocks. Regardless of how good your swimming skills are, it is necessary that you carry with you a flotation device. The better it is for you if the flotation device has lights and reflectors. It will come in handy in case of any unexpected eventualities.
The other kayak fishing gear that you should choose with care is the rod. There are thousands of reels from which you can choose from but this will mostly deep on the available budget. This is because most of them are relatively expensive. Make sure that you buy a quality rod.
The rod should be light and one that you can turn easily. It is also important that you have a first aid kit, an extra paddle and emergency shelter e.g. a tent. Though you might not use any of these, it is vital that you have them. You are out to have fun and nothing should deter you. Always be prepared for the unexpected.
Even with the right kayak fishing equipment, you should always take precautionary measures. Remember that your safety is very important during your kayak fishing expeditions. Also remember that calm waters can suddenly become rough and unsteady. Be on the look out for current, winds and changes in the water level. If you notice any of this, cut short your kayak fishing and go to safer grounds. However, the right kayak fishing gear will make all the difference.
Rod holders are perhaps the most notable kayak fishing accessories out there and come in two distinct styles: the quick-draw and the flush mount. The advantage with the quick draw rod holder is that it allows the angler faster access to the fishing rod, especially where speed in setting the hook is important.
The quick draw rod holder usually comes with a variety of mounting options, including the option for a temporary mount.
The flush mount rod holder is good for use during trolling or to better organize your rods, however the flush mount rod holder can only be mounted along the gunwale, limiting where they can be located. Rod holders can be found at most fishing supply stores and range in price from $10 to $25.
Anchor systems are another must-have kayak fishing accessory, especially since the light-weight and highly maneuverable fishing kayaks can drift quite fast with nothing more than a light breeze. Anchor systems for kayaks come in three distinct types: the traditional folding cleat anchor, the sea anchor, and a surface or mud anchor.
The folding cleat anchor serves the same purpose an anchor would for a regular-sized boat and is intended for deeper water. A sea anchor, or drift sock, is actually a cone of fabric lowered down in to the water to catch the current or stationary water and act as a brake on movement caused by air currents. Finally the surface anchor, or mud anchor, is for very shallow waters and is a pole pushed into the soft bottom and attached to the kayak to anchor it in place. Most anchor systems can be found online and range in pricing from $10 all the way up to $100 or more.
The deckbag is probably one of most useful kayak fishing accessory to have. Quite simply it is a water-resistant storage bag lashed to the kayak deck that provides much needed additional space for your gear, with multiple tie-down points, bungee cords, and side straps. Sizes, colors and option vary, but a good deckbag will run around $60.
One of the most vital kayak fishing accessories is the seat, which can be crafted from hard plastic and covered with foam or an inflatable cushion. Depending on your needs the seat can provide additional back support and lumbar stability. Multiple attachment points make it much easier to adjust the seat for maximum comfort. But be aware that comfort has its price – seats usually start at $150 and go up from there.
What kayak fishing accessory list would be complete without a fish finder – after all, you can’t catch ‘em if you can’t find ‘em. Once again kayaks face a severe limitation in the types of gear they can carry, but thanks to the rising popularity of kayak fishing and ever smaller electronic devices even kayakers can get a high-quality fish finder from manufacturers such as Hummingbird, Lowrance, Norcross and Eagle to name a few. Despite the compact size be prepared to pay anywhere from $75 to over $300 for a quality unit.
Kayak fishing is still growing in popularity, and as a result kayak fishing accessories are still difficult to find with general retailers, however there are a wide range of online vendors and resources out there for the budding kayak fisherman to assist in outfitting. As with any sport, it is important for participants to educate themselves so they can have a safe and enjoyable adventure.
Life jackets without a doubt are a must have item within your kayak fishing accessories. In my opinion this is at the top of the list of kayak fishing accessories. Not only for kayak fishing, for every activity involving water, it is always necessary to have an approved life jacket.
We also need something to store our fish in, I recommend a fish storage cooler bag which comes in a large and a medium size which can be used for fish, food, drinks or just plain storage. It fits in the bow with zippered access from the back of the bag or the whole bag can be opened for cleaning and easy access to your gear.
If you are going out for long periods of time in your kayak, it is crucial to have a back band which provides solid lumbar support. Your skin is exposed to the sun when you go out on the water so take some sun protection with you. Use a wide-brimmed hat, UV protection, sunglasses, lip balm and plenty of sunscreen, preferably with a sun protection factor of at least 50. Don’t forget to put these items on your kayak fishing accessories list also.
River kayak fishing accessories include leashes and bungees, and you’ll need to throw on an anchor trolley. This allows you to move the anchor forward and backwards, providing precise positioning of the kayak while you are fishing in certain locations.