Tag Archive: rigging fly fishing kayak

Stuff I take with me on my kayak fishing trips, by Steve Anderson

I live in Beaufort, on the North Carolina coast. This area is called the Southern Outer Banks (SOBX), and the marshes around here offer great opportunities for fishing.
I’ve fished from kayaks for a long time, and switched to a W kayak earlier this year. Following my good experience with it I decided to become Wavewalk’s local dealer.

This is the typical gear I bring on a Wavewalk Kayak fishing trip –
Fish Bag, tackle & dry bags, drift sock & anchor box, bailer & cast net box.
The second picture shows my transport wheel for easy movement at home & at the fishing site.
In the third picture shows how all that gear stows away and the cast net box secures to the bow. Most importantly, two spinning rods and a fly rod.


Southern Outer Banks Kayaks (SOBX)

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DIY support frame for disabled offshore stand up kayak fly fisherman, by Bill Davenport

Here is my latest refinement. One inch PVC pipe to make a support brace, and a cheap window box planter as an equipment holder.
I fly fish in the ocean, and even though the W is stable, I needed to improve my own stability when I stand up because of my knee problem and height. If you’ve ever worked off of a stepladder you can understand my reasoning. Even the support of the top of the ladder against your ankles improves balance. (That’s why they always have the “do not step on this” disclaimer on them.)
This support frame I made is very light weight and easy to remove (Stores behind the seat when paddling.), as is the tool holder.
Oh yeah, the picture is of the first fish out of the W kayak, in mid July.
Couldn’t be more satisfied, thanks again.

Base for support frame

DIY support frame for offshore stand up fly fishing kayak

First striper of the season, caught back in July

Camouflaged offshore stand up fly fishing kayak with support frame

Toolbox for fly fishing kayak

More about offshore kayak fly fishing from Bill >

I don’t like it, I love it. By Bill Davenport

I found Wavewalk online and became Facebook friends with Craig Masterman, who couldn’t say enough good things about Wavewalk. We are both saltwater fly fishermen, and the ability to stand up and cast makes all the difference in the world for us.

I’m a 6′ 3″ 210lb disabled senior citizen (knee) and I knew that the Wavewalk would be perfect. If only I had known about it before purchasing my [fishing kayak brand name].

I got a tan W500 T and a PSP paddle, and I’ve been a good boy and familiarized myself with the W on a shallow pond before taking it in the salt. On my first trip out on the ocean I made a few casts without looking for fish, just to feel the joy to be able to stand.

I don’t like it, I love it. It is all that I hoped for and more (Thanks Craig!)

Thank you for your kayaks,

Bill Davenport
Plymouth, Massachusetts

As you can see I’ve been wasting no time getting it set up…

Click images to enlarge

More kayak fly fishing with Bill >

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Saddle Bracket for Wavewalk® 500 fishing kayak

1. What is a Wavewalk® 500 Saddle Bracket?

The Wavewalk® 500 saddle bracket is a U shaped, multi purpose accessory that can be attached to the Wavewalk® 500 kayak saddle.
The saddle bracket’s horizontal beam fits exactly in the groove between two W500 saddle sections, and its two vertical beams fit the saddle sides.

Fishing kayak saddle bracket

Fishing kayak saddle bracket – attached


1.1  Support for Sight Fishing and Poling Platform, or a High Saddle Seat

In pairs, the bracket can serve as base for a poling and sight-fishing platform, or for a high saddle seat. Since such added structures may not be required in the kayak on a permanent basis, the two saddle brackets are simply inserted in the groove between two rectangular sections that form the top part of the saddle, with no hardware used for attaching them to the kayak’s saddle.
When a passenger stands on top of the poling and sight fishing platform, or sits on top of the high saddle seat, their weight keeps the saddle brackets firmly in the saddle grooves.

Removing the brackets is easy, and it’s done simply by pulling them out of the grooves.

Saddle brackets can be installed this way anywhere along the saddle, and at any distance from each other. Therefore, such add-on sitting and standing devices can be made in different sizes, and a W kayak can be outfitted with more than of them.

1.2  Permanent Attachment – Increasing Rigidity and Load Capacity

A saddle bracket is used to reinforce the saddle in order to increase rigidity and load capacity. In such case, the bracket is inserted into the last available saddle groove at the cockpit’s rear end, and attached permanently to the saddle from below, by means of two screws going into its horizontal beam.

Since November 2013 Wavewalk® 500 kayaks are outfitted with such a saddle bracket standard. Any W500 kayak that doesn’t feature such a bracket, or lost it, can be outfitted with one.

Attaching saddle bracket to fishing kayak

Attaching the saddle bracket to the saddle from below, using two screws. A motor’s propeller shaft is seen behind the cockpit.

2. Tech Specs

2.1  Materials and Dimensions

The new type of saddle bracket is nicknamed ‘Relaxed Fit’ and its two legs are located at a 13.75″ distance from each other.  This saddle bracket is cut out of one piece of 3/4″ thick Medium Density Overlay (MDO) – an exterior, water resistant material composed of wood and synthetic resin.
When the saddle bracket is installed in the kayak permanently, its horizontal beam protrudes a little over 1.5″ from the top surface of the saddle.
The saddle bracket is lightweight (less than 2 lbs), and non-intrusive.
It can be painted with special paint for outdoor plastic, such as Krylon Fusion spray paint. Regular paint doesn’t adhere well to its surface.
This bracket takes advantage of the natural flex offered by the Polyethylene resin from which most kayaks today including the W500 are molded.
The ‘Relaxed Fit’ bracket allows the W500 kayak’s twin hulls to splay about 1/2″ to each side, and by that have the user gain from a slight increase in the kayak’s lateral stability, as the kayak’s bottom width increases by one inch, from 29″ to 30″.

2.2  Storage Limitations

The presence of a bracket close to the entrance of the hull tips doesn’t prevent the person who fishes out of this kayak from storing their fishing and camping gear in the that space, except for large size rigid objects, such as a live bait tank, or a plastic cooler. However, the W fishing kayak offers plenty of storage space (66 gallons in total), and finding room for such gear and other large size objects (even a fish tank) on board is not a problem at all.

3.  How To – Suggestions & Tips

3.1  High Platform for Poling and Sight Fishing in the Flats, or for a Dog

The W500 kayak was the world’s stablest kayak, before we came out with the W700, and the only one that offered stand up fishing and paddling in full confidence, as well as in moving water.
Anglers looking to stand higher than on the bottom of the W500 kayak’s hulls, and are willing to sacrifice stability, comfort and safety for that matter, can outfit their W500 kayak with a platform resting on top of two brackets. One of these brackets can be permanently attached to the saddle, and the other can be non-attached, or they can both be non attached.
Some anglers think that poling is better done from the boat’s rear end, and as far as paddling goes, it is easier and more effective when the kayaker is located in the middle of the cockpit.
It makes sense to design the platform for comfort, and therefore make it as roomy as possible.

The following figures show how to build a platform that’s about 22″ x 22″, and offers to stand about 17″ higher than the bottom of the hulls. This is to say that a 200 lbs angler standing on top of it would be standing about 13″ above waterline and their W kayak would draft 4″ if the platform was located in the middle of the kayak.
Since the platform configuration shown below is located at the rear end of the cockpit, the same 200 lbs angler standing on it would be standing 10-11 inches above waterline, and their kayak would draft 6-7 inches at the stern.

Sight fishing and poling platform for kayak - figures 1 and 2

Figure 1 – Two saddle brackets
Figure 2 – Two support beams

Sight fishing and poling platform for kayak - figure 3

Figure 3 – Sight fishing and poling platform for kayak – stern mounted

Figure 3.1. – Fishing kayak standup platform (small) – top and bottom view


Large size fishing and poling platform for kayak

Figure 4 – Large size fishing and poling platform for kayak
L= 36″ x W = 22.5″

The above image (Figure 4) shows a fishing and poling platform extending over six saddle sections, that is half of the cockpit’s length.

The same platform can serve to carry a dog on board:

Hunting dog sitting on a platform attached to a fishing kayak


More about taking your dog on board your W kayak >

Base for High Seat

Here’s an example of a DIY high swivel seat based on a pair of saddle brackets:

High swivel seat mounted on a fishing kayak

Here is another example of the saddle bracket being used as a base for a high seat:

High swivel seat (bass boat seat) attached to a fishing kayak

4. Permanent Installation – Instructions

  1. Drill two small-diameter vertical lead holes in the plastic gusset (arched rib) inside which you will install the Saddle Bracket.
  2. Place the bracket firmly inside the gusset, and attach with two screws (min. screw length 1.5″).
  3. Seal the screws with Goop (watertight, all-purpose adhesive).


Jay’s W500 Kayak Rigged For Fishing and Photography, Connecticut

Jay Petersen, outdoorsman, kayak fly angler, and photographer (visit Jay’s Photography website) has completed rigging his W500 for fly fishing, and here is what he says:

One more picture. Fully outfitted and on the water.
Enjoying fishing and shooting photos from the boat.
The extra storage space is nice. The Pelican 1500 case fits in the side for safe camera storage.
Comfortable standing up fishing, even at night.
Jay Petersen

stand up kayak rigged for offshore fly fishing

Read Jay’s first comments on his new W500 kayak >>
Recently added: Jay Kayak Fishing With His Son, In Tandem >>

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