fishing kayaks

Fishing kayaks are designed primarily to fish from. Such kayaks are rigged (outfitted) for fishing, usually by the anglers that own them.
A fishing kayak is required to offer better stability than other kayaks do.
The overall performance of a kayak in fishing terms is often called ‘fishability’.
Comfort (ergonomics) is as important as stability, since anglers spend long hours in their kayak during their fishing trips.
Storage space is important as well, since typically, kayak anglers carry a lot of fishing gear on board.

Most fishing kayaks are too wide and heavy to offer easy paddling, and the stability they offer leaves much to be desired. Like most kayaks, they’ve become synonym to back pain and other problems, due to the poor level of ergonomics they offer, which is why most anglers would still refuse to fish out of a kayak. Storage wise, an average angler isn’t likely to appreciate such kayaks.

The cockpit area is the part of the fishing kayak that’s most important to its user, since this is where they sit, paddle, and fish from.
Sit-in kayaks (SIK) feature a semi-closed space in their middles section that can be described as a cockpit, while sit-on-top kayaks and ‘hybrid’ kayaks do not have a real cockpit, and their users sit in the middle section of the kayak’s ‘deck’, which is essentially the top side of its hull.
These configurations offer the angler little room and even less comfort in handling their gear. Anglers who fish out of such kayaks have to land fish practically in their lap, which is neither practical nor comfortable. Typically, the cockpit of such kayaks is cluttered with accessories and gear, and offers too little fishability to appeal to a serious angler.
In comparison, W kayaks have a full-featured cockpit offering ample room for the user and their gear, and all the range of motion they need. An angler who lands fish in their W kayak can easily let the fish they caught at the bottom of their kayak’s deep hulls, and then handle them in full comfort and and safety.
Anglers who fish out of Wavewalk fishing kayaks consider this type of kayak to be the only one that an average, reasonable person can fish out of. Some of them who have owned several types of small boats consider this kayak to be the world’s best personal fishing boat.

Jeff’s New Fishing Rod Positioning Device

Jeff McGovern has introduced many innovations in fishing from the W kayak. His latest rigging improvement is a device that helps you position your fishing rod inside your kayak’s cockpit.  Says Jeff:

-“I took one of those paddle clips and attached it to a section of pool noddle.  I plan on using it in place of the rod positioning one I have now that is just a crude grove cut into a section of the same stuff.  You might notice the screws holding the piece in place in the foam.  Those are actually not into the foam itself.  I used plastic screw in dry wall anchors with the tips cut off first, they work pretty well when working with foam.  They won’t handle a heavy load but for this purpose to position the rod tip it should be fine.”

Positioning device for fishing rod in kayak

New Fishing Kayak Review From Wisconsin

John Fabina, a kayak fisherman from Wisconsin, sent us a review of his new W fishing kayak.

It’s the third W fishing kayak review we get from Wisconsin, which strengthens the notion that while northern fishermen have never fully adopted traditional kayaks (sit-in and SOT) as fishing platforms, they can see the advantages offered by the W kayak over other popular fishing crafts, such as canoes, dinghies and Jon boats.

Wisconsin kayak fisherman standing up in his fishing kayak

When you read John’s review, please notice that he remembered Wavewalk’s instructions for first timers, and that made his learning curve short and effortless.

New Rigged Fishing Kayak From Wisconsin

John Fabina got his new W fsihing kayak a short time ago, and he already rigged it for the fishing trips he’s planning once the ice is gone…

Fishing kayak fully rigged with deck mounted rod holders, milk crate and paddle holders

Says John:

-“I have not  been able to access open water yet, but I have been rigging my new “w” kayak for fishing. Using ideas from other owners I have added a crate in the back that includes three rod holders and a net holder. Two [catalog brand] quick draw rod holers have been mounted in front. Also added on the side a hook that is used with the bungee to quickly hold rod on side of the “w”.

fishing kayak rigged with rod holders, crate and paddle holders

-“Finally, I riveted two pieces of aluminum that were fashioned into a paddle holder.”

DIY paddle holder for fishing kayak

paddle holders for fishing kayak

-“I am still exploring my best options for mounting my portable eagle fish finder. I sure am looking forward to getting on the water and learning about the “w”. I will keep you posted and hopefully have some photos of spring crappies.”

rigged fishing kayak

Folding Paddle Clips for Fishing Kayaks

Wavewalk is now offering a new option with its PSP paddle: Folding Paddle Clips.

paddle clips for kayak fishing These clips are molded from Nylon, which is common for small-size deck rigging.

Each clip features two holes, and can be either riveted to the kayak hull (preferably), or attached with bolts and nuts.

Note: We don’t recommend using screws for this purpose, or for attaching any piece of deck rigging to your kayak.

The clip has two positions: Open – ready to take the paddle, and folded – so it doesn’t get in the paddle’s way when you’re paddling.

The clips’ internal diameter is 1.25″, which fits the Wavewalk paddle’s shaft diameter.

You can also use it for holding the Mohawk paddle, although it features a smaller, 1.125″ diameter shaft.

When ordering the Wavewalk PSP paddle you can choose between getting a free pair of these folding paddle clips, or a pair of rubber paddle holders (clips). The advantage of the folding clips is that they’ll never get in your paddle’s way when you’re paddling your fishing kayak. The advantage of the rubber paddle holders is that they won’t break.

Separately from our PSP paddle, a pair of folding or rubber paddle clips costs $10 plus S&H.

Different kayak fishermen prefer to have the paddle clips in different places. We recommend that you don’t attach paddle clips to your fishing kayak before having fished from it several times, that is enough for you to know exactly where you want those clips to be.

Jeff, a Kayak Fisherman, Commenting on the Kayak Fishing Market

-“It’s all hype so far. In comparing the Kayak Angler guide to a much wider distributed magazine or rather catalog the information is about the same.  I’ve got both [brand of fishing gear stores] and [brand of fishing catalog] catalogs at the house and the hype you see for various products and the crazy claims are much the same.  For example reels that won’t backlash and can make you a better fisherman.  Total and complete nonsense, I know people that have purchased baitcast reels because of the claims and after a few days use never ever go back to that style.  They did not live up to the claims.

Sometimes people can be saved.  My friend for example had loads of trouble with a bait caster.  I looked at his reel an older hand me down from a relative and found it sound but in need of tuning.  That issue combined with a very one broken down rod was his problem. I tore down and serviced the reel.  Then at a visit to [fishing gear store] had him buy something that complemented that older reel.  Now he loves the setup because it works and it fits him properly.  If he had only seen the catalogs and bought the hype nothing would have worked.

Lures might be the worst of all with claims of filling the boat if a certain brand or type of lure is thrown.  It’s made more complicated by the late night infomercials for things like the Banjo Minnow.
I know the whole thing is upsetting, but remember Wavewalk really does have a totally different boat.  It is like nothing before it, and it will become a boat for the masses.  Other fishing kayaks answer no current issues with the back or comfort since you still sit low.

The answer most folks seem to have to the comfort problem is to add a really nice seat, that I verified by checking with guys with our kayak group here.  They keep upgrading their seats.  First an additional pad then more padding and finally dropping big dollars (like 200+) for a fancy aftermarket seat.  Of course it solves nothing long term.  Fact is boats should have had comfort taken into account up front but I guess that takes away their price advantage. Of course in your case the Wavewalk seat is already there and requires nothing else to work.  Also your day is not ruined when you show up to fish and find you’ve forgotten your seat.
The accessory market is also very interesting.  For the added cost of the “factory” rod holders you really can’t use them in a sit on top.  If you do you subject your reels to loads of saltwater wash over but then again I guess that is good for the reel companies.  Treated in that fashion unmaintained reels would make it maybe one season.

Talking about reels one of the local radio fishing shows here nearly gave me a heart attack a couple of weeks back.  They were on air talking about proper equipment care after use in saltwater.  What they recommended would only benefit a reel repair business or the tackle firms themselves.  Those fellows recommendations were just so wrong.  I tried to call at the time of the broadcast to be on air.  But while I was waiting and driving at the same time my cell lost it’s signal.  By the time I got one again they were on to other subjects and the screener said the lines were too full. I did try again last weekend when they were on but my subject was not on the table so I didn’t make the show.
Oh well, sometimes the pioneers like Wavewalk take the sling and arrows.  I like helping shoot back.  The W kayak is the best of it’s kind in paddlecraft.
— Jeff”