Kayak fishing yes or no? Pedals?

Josh

dead in the water
WFF Moderator
Has anyone here done much kayak fishing? I don't ever see a ton of threads on the topic.

I've been thinking of picking up some sort of sit-on-top kayak for fishing a couple of the larger lakes around here. Maybe something cheap ($300-500) or maybe saving up a bit more and getting a nicer one with pedals? Probably 10ft for ease of transport, but there are a lot of cool 12ft ones as well.

Float tube works great for smaller water. But holy moses does it take a while to fin any distance. And I feel more than a little sketchy in bigger water with boat traffic. I've borrowed a buddy's little walmart cheapie 8ft sit-in kayak a couple times and gotten a sense of what it's like. But I haven't done any serious fishing or taken it on the bigger lake. Plus, those kayaks aren't at all set up for fishing with minimal storage and no rod holders or paddle clips etc.

Anyone have experience fishing from a kayak? Is it cool or just a pointless halfway point between a float tube and a jon boat? Opinions on the pedal drive units vs the paddle ones? People seem to claim that you can fish and move with the pedal ones, but I wonder how often people REALLY do that. Seems like they would be more useful for getting from place to place. Anyone stand and cast?

And I suppose if you've got a kayak sitting in your garage that you have given up on, let me know? Maybe we could work something out.
 

fly-by

WFF Supporter
I fish a couple of Hobie inflatables, an i9s and i11s. They are the older mirage drives that are not reversible. They are good for trolling a streamer but primarily use them for getting from a to b, then anchoring up.
 

MGTom

Living at the place of many waters
WFF Supporter
The bass guys I know (gear fishers) and some trout guys who troll swear by them, with pedals. Got 'em set up with rod holders and gps depth sounders, the whole 9 yards. I found it way too heavy to deal with out of the water. I would need a pickup at least then still they leave it half out the back. I found fly fishing quite similar to fishing from my canoe. Stable but takes a certain rhythm.
 
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theleo91386

Active Member
Has anyone here done much kayak fishing? I don't ever see a ton of threads on the topic.

I've been thinking of picking up some sort of sit-on-top kayak for fishing a couple of the larger lakes around here. Maybe something cheap ($300-500) or maybe saving up a bit more and getting a nicer one with pedals? Probably 10ft for ease of transport, but there are a lot of cool 12ft ones as well.

Float tube works great for smaller water. But holy moses does it take a while to fin any distance. And I feel more than a little sketchy in bigger water with boat traffic. I've borrowed a buddy's little walmart cheapie 8ft sit-in kayak a couple times and gotten a sense of what it's like. But I haven't done any serious fishing or taken it on the bigger lake. Plus, those kayaks aren't at all set up for fishing with minimal storage and no rod holders or paddle clips etc.

Anyone have experience fishing from a kayak? Is it cool or just a pointless halfway point between a float tube and a jon boat? Opinions on the pedal drive units vs the paddle ones? People seem to claim that you can fish and move with the pedal ones, but I wonder how often people REALLY do that. Seems like they would be more useful for getting from place to place. Anyone stand and cast?

And I suppose if you've got a kayak sitting in your garage that you have given up on, let me know? Maybe we could work something out.
Just google NWKA. Pedal kayaks cost a premium but allow you to use of your hands when you're maneuvering the kayak. Paddle kayaks are cheaper and the decks are cleaner (no pedals in the way) if you're standing up and casting. Jackson Kayak makes their Mayfly kayak specifically for fly fishing.
 

MD

WFF Supporter
I tried a paddle kayak one once or twice....my biggest complaint was having no control when fishing. Unless I was anchored, I couldn’t remain in one spot....was at the whim of the wind and waves.

I suppose it’s no different than a pram or other boat.

I was fortunate to get a good deal on an old WaterMaster Grizzly and absolutely love using the oars to get from here to there and the fins to keep me where I wanna be.

good luck
 

Jiminsandiego

Active Member
I've done quite a bit of kayak fishing. Mostly fishing the kelp beds offshore of Southern California as well as the bays. Sit on top (obviously). I'd suggest a used plastic one..no peddles to start with. You can always resell it. I never tried peddles. Lots of extra stuff, heavy, expensive and most importantly "seaweed" is often present. I would suggest buying the most expensive (used) paddle you can manage. I can not stress this enough. It is key. For me part of the fun was setting up the kayak to fit my specific needs. Hatches, clips and leashes (for paddles and rods) tackle boxes etc.
 

Jiminsandiego

Active Member
My float tube is great for positioning but a kayak can cover one heck of a lot more water. A kayak does have some important advantages over a motor boat. Way cheaper, no maintenance, no trailer, and easier to store. Throwing my kayak in the back of my truck is so much quicker and easier than dealing with a motor boat. Also I am convinced that the fish are much less spooked by a kayak. Kayak fishing seems to be getting more and more popular, IMHO, for many good reasons.
 

SaltyCutt

Beach Bum
I fish a lot from my pedal drive kayak and love it. An anchor system is helpful in wind, but if you have an instant reverse drive pedal system (not Hobie) you can back up easily and i have no problem fishing hands free and covering banks. Best part is effortlessly covering water. Also look at systems built to get the drive up and out of the way quickly for shallow weed beds. My kayak is 90 lbs and I strap it to the top of my Ford escape with no problems. Takes about 10 minutes to set up and go. Huge fan for Puget Sound and lakes.
 

Josh

dead in the water
WFF Moderator
I found it way too heavy to deal with out of the water. I would need a pickup at least then still they leave it half out the back.
It seems really easy to get a kayak up to "heavier than jon boat" weight. Though I suppose any motor on a jon boat would make that comparison silly.
 

Josh

dead in the water
WFF Moderator
I fish a lot from my pedal drive kayak and love it. An anchor system is helpful in wind, but if you have an instant reverse drive pedal system (not Hobie) you can back up easily and i have no problem fishing hands free and covering banks.

Salty, what kayak are you using now? The hobie style drives look really cool and less tangling with the weeds, but I can't imagine that I'd have money for the fancy 180 or 360 versions. At least not for a first kayak.
 

SaltyCutt

Beach Bum
Salty, what kayak are you using now? The hobie style drives look really cool and less tangling with the weeds, but I can't imagine that I'd have money for the fancy 180 or 360 versions. At least not for a first kayak.
I run a Wilderness Systems Radar 135 I picked up on Craigslist. Great boat, Hobie fin system is really cool, but after fishing it of mine a lot I can't imagine aligning the fins and pulling a tab to chance directions. If you're fishing a bank and letting the wind push you, I'm constantly pedaling forward and back with the shoreline. Hobie fins definitely going to perform better than a prop in weeds. I fished a bass lake over the weekend and definitely had to clean the prop a lot.
20190830_111055.jpg
 

DennisE

Topwater and tying.
Gig Harbor Fly has the Hobie's that you can rent. They even have an option to deliver to nearby waters. It would give you a less expensive option to try out a top of the line rig.

I gave up on my sit-in yaks because they seemed to put on 5 pounds each year when putting them on top of my car. That and they got an inch deeper each year when trying to lever my way out after a day of fishing. Now I'm down to 2 pontoons. A 9 foot light and a 10 foot heavy. That and a 14' aluminum which I hardly ever use.
 

Josh

dead in the water
WFF Moderator
If you're fishing a bank and letting the wind push you, I'm constantly pedaling forward and back with the shoreline.

Makes sense.

Hobie fins definitely going to perform better than a prop in weeds. I fished a bass lake over the weekend and definitely had to clean the prop a lot.

Bass/trout lakes would be virtually all I would use it for. So that's something for me to consider I suppose.
 

SaltyCutt

Beach Bum
Obviously there is no problem with weeds in either system in water 18" deep above the weed beds, if you're going from pocket to pocket you wouldn't want either drive in the water, just paddle and stop to fish. Just stuff to consider. Also Hobies are a shitload of money, new PA 360s are through the roof. I think my set up new with pedal drive would have been about $2800, I paid $2000. Hobie is wider and heavier @ 120lbs than my boat, but that also means the Hobie is much more stable for standing and fishing.
 

Snopro

Active Member
Pedal kayaks really shine when you are trying to hold position in wind and/or current while continuing to fish. I've been fishing the Hobie PA 14 and Revolution 16 for 8 years.

Don't overlook iSUPs. Speed of a kayak and portability of a float tube. Clean deck and awesome sight fishing platform. I've spent more hours fishing off mine the last two years than any other type of fishing.
 

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