Tag Archive: fish

Fish are what kayak anglers are after :)

Kayak Fishing in 2050 – A New World Map?

If you’re planning to be kayak fishing in 2050 you should be prepared to go after different fish species, or head further North if you want to keep catching your favorite fish of today.

A new study found that global warming may affect the distribution of fish populations worldwide, with fish from warmer waters spreading to today’s cooler regions that are getting warmer.

According to this model, this could be true both for ocean kayak fishing and inland kayak fishing.

Read more about it in this CNN article.

Review of the Wavewalk Kayak for Fly Fishing

Note: This is a review of the W300 kayak series that was discontinued in 2010.
Go to the updated list of recent fishing kayak reviews »

By Ben Ciliberto

Pennsylvania

Fly fisherman standing in kayak and casting

First Impressions:

Went out for the fourth time yesterday- getting my W outfitted for sight fishing carp with a fly rod in the flats.
I stand almost the entire time now, great line of sight on the fish, and it’s easier to fight the fish standing also.

I have a stake out pole for anchoring in shallow water, and a 3 lb dumbell for dropping anchor.

Steering is easy, by dipping the paddle on the side I want to drift toward. And I installed a notched  foam paddle seat on each side so I can quietly set down the paddle and make no noise or slippage.

carp on kayak - close-up

Yesterday I caught a real nice Common Carp– about 26″ an 7- 8 lb. He ran me around for 15 minutes and was released healthy after pics!

I also hooked a monster bass (thought I was throwing to a carp) but I lost him when I got too much line slack.

The W is a delight- easy to load, my back is feeling good, and I’m catching fish!

Fly fishing standing in a kayak

Performance Review:

W did it again, just back from two days (fished 4-8 thursday, and 8 hours Friday) at a 100 + acre spring fed lake in Pennsylvania. Beautiful weather and great fishing.

I’m really comfortable now in the W — changing at will from paddling standing across the lake, to sitting, drifting, casting in all positions. Caught 30+ large crappies, 10 bass, 10 bluegills, and most spectacular– has a hookup with a 20″ + northern pike who sliced off my tippet (need steel leader for them) in a flash while blasting out of the water! I was standing in the flats shallow end when I spotted him ahead in the clear water– I knew I would sacrifice my fly but it was worth it– one  woolly bugger for a memory of nasty explosion in the water as he jumped the #12 nymph.

fly fishing kayak

I also used a drift chute with the W in the afternoon as the wind rose to a blowy 15 mph or so— worked super, really slows your drift and keeps you on course much better. I worked the shoreline standing and casting to the crappies and bluegills. I’d recommend a drift chute if your water is prone to daily winds, as most lakes and ponds are.

Fly fishing kayak

I bought a small adjustable paddle to use when drifting shallows, helps me change course a little while holding the flyrod. My foam rod holder forward allows me to have the large paddle at the ready, and to be able to set it quietly without scaring the fish. I also added a tape marker for center of the large paddle so I can set it down and know it will be balanced on the W.

I’m loving the W– after 12 hours in it in a short period my back still feels good, although I suffer from chronic back issues. After 8 hours Friday I knew when to quit, when it started getting tired.

I’ll be getting back to chasing carp again next week, and I want to do a 5 mile float down my local creek now that the water level is easing and water clearing some.

 

Ben's fly fishing kayak in Neshaminy creek
Ben’s W fly fishing kayak in Neshaminy creek.  Read the story on Ben’s blog

kayak fisherman paddling standing in his kayak
Ben maneuvering his W kayak while  standing in it

mirror carp of W fishing kayak
First catch – at night

mirror carp on fishing kayak - close-up
Close-up on the first mirror carp Ben caught from his W kayak

interior of W fly fishing kayak cockpit
The interior of Ben’s W fishing kayak:
Note the foam modules that Ben made for both the full size paddle and the smaller paddle he uses for small adjustments

fly fishing kayak cockpit close-up
The rug on top of the saddle is useful for handling Ben’s slippery catch

view of fly fishing kayak cockpit - close-up
Another close-up on the interior of Ben’s fly fishing W kayak: Note the rugs glued to the bottom of the hulls – to minimize noise

Thanks– loving the product!

NEW: Ben’s stand up fishing device:  READ MORE ==>

kayak rigged for stand up fly fishing for carp

Photography: Ben Ciliberto and others

2008 W300 fishing kayak review, North Carolina

Note: This is a review of the W300 kayak series that was discontinued in 2010.
Go to the updated list of recent fishing kayak reviews »

By Fred Jelinek

W Kayak Fisherman, North Carolina

I use my Wavewalk kayak about once a week now in NC’s coastal marshes and creeks.
As I suspected, it is nice to have a dry boat when the water temps are in the low 50″s.
I wear shin high rubber boots which simplifies launching with dry feet, although, with care, I could get away with rubber bottom shoes.
I have friends with SOTs and am happy with my decision to go with the wavewalk. No boat is perfect for all conditions, but this one works for me.
In my view, the key advantage is the ease of launch and landings. My SOT friends take about 15 minutes to rig up their boats and launch them, then do the same upon return.
The wavewalk slips in and out of my S-10 bed in about 3 minutes and is ready to go.
Loaded in the truck. Tying down takes 3 minutes and nothing needs to be removed from the boat, except things that might blow away. For long hauls or rainy weather, I have a cover for the hatch to keep out water.
An amusing observation is that lots of folks will say, “I’ve never seen a kayak with wheels before”!…
Another advantage is that I do not have to be so particular about storage of gear.
The SOT folks have to have a particular spot for each item, often a plastic crate behind them, while I have lots of space inside that is much better protected.

Trout caught in fishing kayak, North Carolina, Hadnot Creek
January trout from Hadnot Creek

Fred fishing standing in his kayak, in the ocean
A picture shot by soldiers on vacation on the North Carolina coast

Fishing kayak on pickup truck truckbed
As simple as that: just toss’n go!

DIY trolley wheels for fishing kayak
Beauty in simplicity: DIY fishing kayak wheels

Fishing kayak with DIY trolley wheels, North Carolina
A perfect match: Wheels design fits the ‘Keep It Simple’ W design

One of Fred's favorite fishing spots
A favorite fishing spot

W300 Fishing Kayak Review – Minnesota

Note: This is a review of the smaller, W300 kayak series that was discontinued in 2010. Go to the updated list of recent, W500 fishing kayak reviews »

By Scott Johnson

Kayak Fisherman and Photographer, Minnesota

Last year Scott ordered his first W kayak, a 300 2007 model that he outfitted for bow hunting and fishing – Read more about it ».
This year Scott got himself a second W Kayak, a W300 2008 model.

Scott paddling his fishing kayak on the maple river
Scott on his Maple river trip

Sandy walking in the river

Sandy walking in the river

Inside fishing kayak cockpit

“…my Pepsi was riding securely in front of me along side my camera.”

The Maple river viewed from Scott's fishing kayak
The Maple river viewed from Scott’s Wavewalk 300 fishing kayak

Railroad bridge shot from fishing kayak
“I love bringing the camera along for a scenic picture. The railroad is gone but with the WW I can get to places that bring back the past.”
“I decided since now I have 3 paddles, 2 of the heavy duty, to leave one of the Mohawk paddle ends off of just for paddling the W kayak like a canoe. It’s kind of nice to have a blunt end to grab hold of. I am getting good at keeping my WW going pretty straight, paddling mostly on one side and doing some lean turning to keep it going straight.””When heading home I was amazingly not even tired or sore from my
excursion, can’t wait to hit another stretch.”

Fishing kayak on Maple river, Minnesota
Scott’s kayak on the Maple river

-“My nephew Justin and I were anxious to venture down the  Watonwan river.  We had to wait until the waters settle down and clear up a bit.  When we started out we were on a 45 degree muddy incline. I positioned my Wavewalk square to the water and told Justin “This is how you get started!”   A little thrust and I was on my way down – I hit the water and bounced the front end a little but easily maintained my balance. Justin was grinning, he also managed the water slide entry with no problem. Going with the current is lots of fun and no work. We had our fish poles but the river was so muddy that fishing seemed pointless. The important thing is we had a great time just cruising down the river. We are both impressed with the wavewalks, they are very versatile.”-“Bill thought the WW kayak was just perfect for fishing, light enough to easily drag and easy to handle, even for the first time out!  It’s nice to have people in the W crafts enjoying themselves.”

Photography: Scott Johnson

Two fishing kayaks - Minnesota river

-“I have outfitted my W300 kayaks with two Igloo slimline coolers each, they don’t slide up into the storage area but they fit in perfect and make a nice platform with drink holders either in front of you or beside you. Those and some colorful bungee cords have the WW’s looking pro! The slimline coolers work great in the WW. ”

Maple river photographed from Scott's fishing kayak
Scott’s scenic shot of the maple river
-“I find myself taking my Wavewalk down stretches of river with conditions that would usually keep me at home, when the going gets to shallow, I can easily step out and walk her through stretches of river with little effort.”

Scott walking in the river with his fishing kayak
“The WW kayak also makes a great pack mule with plenty of room in the catamarans for whatever I may find on my adventures.”

Scott posing with his two fishing kayaks

Left to right: Lucy, Scott’s 08′ W300, Lady, Scott himself, and his 07′ W300

-“Everyone who see’s the WW are very impressed with it, especially when they see me standing! I Really like both the kayaks!”

 

Bill sitting in kayak and catching a fish
-“Made it down a stretch of Blue Earth River with my old fishing friend Bill. It was a nice cool afternoon. He had never even been in a kayak before, but had no problems with handling the Wavewalk 300.”

Justin paddling W fishing kayak on the muddy river

-“My nephew Justin and I paddled down the Watownwan river for walleyes. It is a very scenic smaller river.”

Picture shot from fishing kayak - river bank erosion

“More major erosion has widened out the river. ”

Bill sitting in kayak and showing a fish he caught

-“Bill’s smile says it all, though we only had a few hours it was a lot of fun!  Spending times with friends and enjoying the outdoors is what the WW is all about! I’m so Glad I have them!”

River Scenery - picturec shot from W fishing kayak

-“The river has transformed into a shallow slow mover.  There are big sandbars and lots of stuff to see. The walleyes are holed up and easily being caught.”

Fishing kayak cockpit

-“I’ve been fishing many times on the lake I live by, and I also have a lot of fun just paddling standing around the edge of the lake, scouting for fish and seeing what’s on the bottom.
I brought home some nice driftwood I picked of the bottom for the flower gardens.”

Choosing a bait caster

By Jeff McGovern

drawing of Jeff fishing

Bait casting is a powerful, accurate fishing system—but, without practice, the pursuit is frustrating.  The first thing to do is to decide which rig to purchase.  Bombarded with ads from every direction, making the right choice can be difficult.   I’ll try and give you a place to start.
First, do not be swayed by all the hype you see on TV and in the magazines.  There is no magic reel that will never backlash or add huge distances to a cast.  Those things are the result of how you develop your angling skills and how well you set up your individual reel.  The key is to start with a proven reel design that fits your hand and match it to a good rod you can handle easily.  It really is all about the fit and how the outfit feels to you.
There are two basic types of bait casting reels: low profile and round.   Low profile reels are sleek and racy looking.  Good examples are Shimano, ABU, and Daiwa.  The round reels are taller and have round frames.  The same reel companies previously mentioned have reels in that class as well.
The prices range from 60 dollars to over 500 dollars.  Now we need to address the confusion of deciding how much you need to spend to have something that works.  I have some simple suggestions, based on my own experience, to make this easier.  I normally recommend for a beginner a basic reel in the 60 to 140 dollar range.  Good examples are the ABU round reels, such as the C3 series with the 4500 or 5500 reels. These are found at most sporting goods stores and will cost you 60 to 80 dollars. Make no mistake about reels in this price range– they work.  You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to get a nice reel.  I use them regularly and have no problem catching fish.  The basic design has been around for decades and proven to catch fish anywhere in the world.  Mine have been around a long time, cared for properly and some are now approaching 40 years old.
One last important reel issue is which hand you will use to cast.  Most casting reels have their handle on the right side.  The standard casting method is to cast right handed, then switch the outfit to the left hand to reel in.  It sounds complicated at first, but becomes natural within a short time with practice.   More and more reels are now becoming available with left hand retrieve, so you don’t have to switch hands.  If you are just learning to cast, practicing with using either hand can be a real advantage.
Now that you’ve found your reel, you’ll need a rod to match.  Again, the same price range of 60 to 140 dollars will get things started.  Don’t go overboard on heavy actions and big long handles.  A great starting point is medium action, rear handle of no more than eight inches or so, and a total rod length of 5’6” to 7’.  Get the size you are most comfortable with.  You don’t need a long rod to cast far.  The longer rods are harder to transport and somehow manage to find car doors and tree limbs very easily.  Try out the rod on the reel at the store and check the feel.  There are many rod companies to pick from–just be sure it’s a known brand so, if there is a problem, you aren’t stuck with a lemon.  Your tackle store can help you with the brands best suited in your area.  You can also check out the catalogs from Bass Pro Shops and Cabelas.   These firms have additional in-house rod brands that are superb and well covered with guarantees.
Line is the next consideration for you new bait casting rig. Look for a line rating of 10 to 20 lb test.  The best line weight for beginning bait casting is 12lb test. Start with a premium mono line. Don’t buy cheap line.  Use well known brands: Berkley, Stren, Sufix, or YoZuri.  There are others, but these are nationally distributed and easy to find.  A solid basic product that is universally available is Berkley Big Game 12lb test.  I use this line and have been happy with it for years.  For teaching purposes, I use a version called Solar that has a fluorescent green color.  It’s easy to see and manage while learning, and relatively inexpensive.
Now you have gotten the rig together, spooled on the line.  Time for casting practice to begin.  The best place is not on the water, but on the lawn.  Buy some of the plastic practice plugs and try a little “lawn bassin”.  It’s a great way to learn and helps you practice the casting part instead of the fishing part.  I do this daily at home just to keep my casting eye in shape and it pays big dividends on the water.  Start with a ½ ounce practice plug and tie it on your line with the canoe man’s loop knot.  (Check the archives for my previous article on knots.)
Casting is a learned process.  Become familiar with the instructions that came with your reel on how to use the casting brakes and spool controls.  Start with easy tosses and progress as you get comfortable.  Don’t go for distance–go for accuracy.  A small plastic bucket is a great target to begin with.  Keep at it and learn to control the outgoing line with your thumb.  In no time you’ll be casting like pro and hitting right where you need to catch the big ones.

Jeff

Low profile reel
Low profile reel

Round reel
Round reel

Reels and hat
Reels and hat…

Casting plug
Casting plug

Short fishing rod handles
Short rod handles

 

Copyright © Jeff McGovern

Read more about Jeff’s kayak fishing trips and observations »