Photo: Scott Floyd
Kayaking magazines are filled with pictures of kayakers touring glacier lakes and other inhospitably cold locations, as if such images reflected the common reality of paddling, or even what most kayakers aspire to do.
But when it comes to kayak fishing, magazines and websites seldom feature reports from cold places, and this is because kayak fishing is first and foremost a sunshine belt phenomenon. It doesn’t mean that you won’t find kayak fishermen in places like New Jersey, Puget Sound or Cape Cod, but the big numbers aren’t there, and the activity is restricted to the hottest months of the year, roughly between June and September – even if the water is navigable and fishable.
This is because a traditional kayak is basically a boat stripped down to its minimum, and one may argue that a SOT kayak is not even a vessel but more of a styled paddleboard (well, historically that would be correct).
That is to say that fishing from such a platform is not as easy and comfortable as fishing from a bigger boat is, and the little stability offered in combination with the extreme proximity of the cold water and the total exposure to wind and rain make the whole idea of kayak fishing considerably less appealing to the northern fisherman.
It was a Jeff McGovern who had first explained to me that the W kayak would be the perfect solution for northern kayak fishing. Although he’s a Floridian Jeff grew up in the Midwest and goes fishing in Canada every year.
And he was right: Looking back at 2007 we could see that although Florida and Texas were still the biggest states as far as W kayak fishing is concerned, northern states became as important in this aspect – coast to coast.
For those of you who want to read more, here are some northern W kayak fishermen’s stories:
Oregon, Wisconsin (fly fisherman), Massachusetts (Cape Cod), Connecticut, , Minnesota (hunter & fisherman),