Plug - sit on top kayak


Not to be confused with freestoneangler
That's awesome Jim! I also have the Tarpon 140 in mango plus a Wildernest Tempest 170 and Pungo 120 - all in mango! It's not my favorite color but when I'm on the water, my favorite color is one that the CG can see. If I ever get down that way, we'll have to have a Tarpon mango-fishing-fest.

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Those Pungo 100s aren't bad looking, either. They move pretty fast for a 10' piggy.
This boat proliferation is a disease!:beer1: I still use my U-12 (olive, with black spray skirts) and my mini-drifter (sky gray) for creek sneakin' and smaller lakes. But "mango" seems right for the ocean.
Middle of Sept looks like good paddling tides here for morning fishing, but any time the wind and rain aren't too bad can be good.
Just thought I would add some feedback on the Hobie's. I have been fishing one out in the sound for 5 years now, and could not be more delighted. BTW, you do not need to get out of the boat to lift the drive system in extremely shallow water... you can do it while seated. They are really, really fast, super stable, and obviously offer the advantage (especially important for fly fishing) of hands free use.

Been using it a ton this year, all over north sound to sound sound, and has been especially terrific for the pinks. Had it out in pretty volatile water and wind, and never a hint of problem.

Been traveling further and further afield this year, some really long "peddles", and it is wonderful when I decide to head home to be able to really cruise fast and fairly effortlessly, even against the rip and in stout winds.

I also had it up at the Blackfeet Lakes a few weeks ago and what a treat! To be able to troll big flies for those 10 lb browns was really neat.

Good luck with your decision. You can email me at if you want more info.
Whoops! I also forgot to add that my neighbor got one this year, with the oversized flippers, and outfitted it with a finder. I tend to follow him around when he is out, like a dog on a bone. The finder fits perfectly into that mast socket, with the lead winding down into the forward hatch.


Just thought I'd put my two-cents in... I've been fishing out of my Hobie Outback (w/Mirage Drive) and I can't think of another SOT I'd ever consider. The pedal drive allows me hands-free fishing IN REVERSE (just like a 'toon) and shallow water is no problem. I just pull the drive unit out without having to get out of the boat and the draft goes down to just a few inches. Got a lot of water to cover? I converted my stock blades to the turbo blades and can get a good wake going behind me; can cover miles in no time... extremely stable with a very wide 33" beam.

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Dang! All this praise gettin heaped on the Hobie Mirage Drive. Well, I have met a couple of yak fishers with Hobies, and they really like theirs, too. Thanks FLYRODR and d_w_hart. I hope to get to try one out soon. Maybe this Wednesday, as I'm yak fishing then with someone who's got a Revolution.
You can go in reverse? Cool! I'd always heard that the Mirage Drive only goes forward. They must have come up with an improved design on the drive.


Jim, you simply pull the drive unit out, turn it 180 degrees and re-insert it into the drive well. Now your rudder still steers you wherever you wish to troll, one light stroke on the pedal and you're underway, and best of all, you've got your line / fly behind you where you can handle it. Not much more annoying than to get a hook-up with your fish BEHIND you 'cause now you've got to bring your boat about 180 degrees to handle it! You have the right idea; there are places that rent the Hobie Outbacks. I got mine from the dealer located in Magnuson Park in Seattle (right on Lake Washington).

I just can't say enough about them. Good luck with whatever way you go! You obviously are aware of just how much fishing expands for you when done out of a kayak!

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.
Well, so far I have a NativeCraft Ultimate 12 hybrid (kayoe) and a Wilderness Systems Tarpon 140 SOT. Each one has its good points.

Love the U-12 for its outstanding stability (flycasting standing up) and the tight maneuverability in creeks. I often paddle through the shallows standing up, and can even turn the boat simply by overweighting one pontoon (its a "pontoon" tunnel hull design).

I had a very fun day fishing along the Jetty in my Tarpon on my first go-out. There's a monster cave dwelling beast lurking out there, about 30 feet down! I marked the spot. Can't wait for the weather conditions to get user friendly for out there again. I'll cancel everything else and go. That ain't fly fishing, though, so you won't get to read about it here.

I can see that if my shoulder starts bothering me again and getting to be a problem, then I might have to trade the Tarpon in on a Hobie. However, I think the little tweak I felt in my R shoulder is due to all the casting I've been doing, and not the paddling.
Hey Jim and Flyrodder,

Jim, hope the shoulder heals.

I want to add my plug as a supporter of the SOT for fly fishing but ..... . Flyrodder, when did Hobie set the kayaks up so you could reverse the Mirage drive and then PEDDEL backwards?

Wont work in mine although mine is an older model. I have to PADDLE when I need to backup.

Just askin'


Mich, I believe my OutBack is a 2009 model. If you're familiar with them, my rudder controls are colored red to raise and green to lower into the water. What I love about my model is that to mount the drive unit, I simply drop it into place and it automatically locks in; my previous model, I had to twist each cam lock to secure the drive unit.

Both units that I owned allowed me to reverse the drive unit, since the axle configured the same regardless of the fin direction when mounted in the drive well. As far as I know, Hobie has produced only two versions of the drive unit mounting system; both allowed reversal of the fins. I'll tell you one thing... it's the sweetest system available when trolling or working a shoreline, to be able to propel one's self in reverse. Just like fishing from a 'toon! Hands free!
All these years and I did not know there was a reverse ....... Do you use the feature often? Being one of more than ample girth I do not know if I could lean over and reset the drive easily. I will try.
I have been thinking about selling my Tarpon and getting a Hobie for the hands free feature and from what I have found from the kayak sites is that you can pedal in reverse but its not recommeded that you do so fast. I gueess the risk is damaging the cams. But since I don't have one, I am only passing along what I read.