Tag Archive: tidal current

10 good reasons to motorize your kayak

Wavewalk is the world leader in motorized kayaks in terms of stability, load capacity, seaworthiness, speed, versatility, mobility, comfort, and more.
This article answers the question “What are the advantages of motorized kayaks over non-motorized ones?”

1. Motorizing is easier than paddling

Not everyone can paddle their kayak over long distances, or in less than perfect conditions. Some kayakers suffer from disabilities, and others are elderly or not physically fit. Assisted paddling, namely paddling while an electric motor provides your kayak with additional propulsive power makes things easier, be it in strong wind, fast currents, or waves, as well as on flat water. When you motorize, you save your own energy, and you’re more comfortable.

2. Having a motor is safer than depending solely on paddling

A human powered kayak is an under powered vessel, by definition. In a sustained mode, an average adult paddler can produce between one tenth of a horsepower and one quarter of a horsepower, and this is very little, even in comparison to weak electric motors. In case you’re too tired to paddle back to your starting point, or due to unfavorable changes in water or weather conditions, being able to propel your kayak with a motor can be a critical factor that could save your trip, and even your life – A motorized kayak is safer than a non-motorized one.

3. A motor greatly increases your range of travel

Simply, having an extra source of power on board allows you to go further, since you can paddle to your destination, and motorize on the way back. So, whether you’re on a touring, fishing or on a photography trip, the motor allows you to cover more water, explore, and go to more places.

4. A motor allows you to take a bigger payload on board – cargo and/or passengers

You may want to take a passenger on board, or load your kayak with heavy camping gear, but this additional weight could make it too hard for you to paddle. In such case, a motor could make the difference.

5. Motors work well for trolling

You can paddle your kayak and fish at the same time, namely engage in trolling, but an electric trolling motor or a small outboard gas motor can do a better job than your paddle.

6. Driving a motorized kayak is fun!

Driving a motorized kayak can be fun too, especially if it’s a Wavewalk that’s outfitted with a powerful outboard motor. And driving standing, which is an option that all Wavewalk models offer, is even more fun – It’s comparable to skiing, except you’re going on water and not on snow, and it’s also comparable to water skiing, except for the fact that you’re free to go anywhere you want, including in choppy water and in waves, and you don’t depend on a powerboat to tow you.

7. A motor can get you to places that you otherwise couldn’t access

A Wavewalk outfitted with a mud motor (surface drive) can go where other boats can’t, and even where human powered kayaks can’t, such as mud flats, fast streams, etc.

8. Driving saves time

An S4 Wavewalk kayak outfitted with a powerful outboard motor can go at speeds approaching 20 mph, for as long as you want. This is more than five times the speed that a strong kayaker in a fast kayak (that is not a typical fishing kayak) can sustain for a limited amount of time, on flat water. In other words, a motor kayak can get you much faster to where you want to go, and back.

9. Motor boating is cool, and speed is exciting

Not everyone likes paddling, and not everyone thinks it’s cool. You may want to take someone on board your kayak, be it a child, your wife, an elderly parent, a fishing buddy, etc., and find that kayaking (or canoeing) doesn’t appeal to them, but going in a motorboat would, and to some of them the appeal would be greater if you go at high speed.

10. Helping other kayakers

Having a kayak powered by an outboard motor puts you in a unique position of being able to help other kayakers. You could do it by carrying heavy camping equipment on board your motorized kayak (realistically, only a Wavewalk…), taking passengers that aren’t fit for paddling, and by towing other kayaks.

 

More articles on these subjects –

How much HP for my S4 skiff’s outboard motor?

Developments in Motorized Kayaks

Paddling in Strong Wind

Boat stability in a kayak

Motorize your fishing kayak?

How Much Gear Can You Store Inside a Wavewalk Fishing Kayak?

Fishing Kayak Stability

Motorizing Your Kayak – Why, How, What Etc…

 

Fishing with my Wavewalk S4 out of Woods Hole, Cape Cod

By Mike Silva

 

I went fishing out of Woods Hole, Cape Cod. We had strong tidal currents today, and the sea was a bit rough with 16 mph SE wind and gusts up to 22 mph. We did pretty well though.
I’m getting a spray shield.

Wavewalk S4 mounted with a 6 HP Suzuki outboard motor. Cape Cod, November 2017. The fish on the front deck are Tautog (blackfish).

 


More fishing with Mike »

Fishing The Mangrove Tunnels

By Captain Larry Jarboe

 

This particular tunnel is inaccessible during high tide. Most are not this narrow. But, there are plenty of fish waiting to get caught.

That 3.5 hp Nissan [Tohatsu] is a long shaft outboard that I found south of Jacksonville for 200 bucks. With a new carb and a fresh impeller (less than 100 bucks) she is a fine runner.

Note the DIY handle of the tiller extension: It is easy to grab behind my back to steer. On straight hauls, I rest my back upon it and steer with the paddle. Good vibrations…

The pics are from the stern of the boat. As the tide pulls me thru the narrow cuts, the main resistance, the OB lower unit, wants to move forward. This gives me better control and helps clear the mangrove spider webs ahead.

Also, I built a combo 3 rod holder, Go-Pro, fish de-hooker, bait knife, and line clipper holder that fits in a single support hole of the W700 and Series 4 vessels. When I get the French fry holder mounted, I’ll post a pic.

 

 

Today’s catch before filleting

This trip produced Mangrove Snappers, Caesar Grunts, and Bermuda Chubs. We ate the snappers and grunts for lunch. The chubs will be smoked to make fish dip.

fried fresh fish fillets

Panko fried fresh fish fillets

More fishing adventures with Capn’ Larry »

Duck boat for two hunters – Wavewalk 700

By Chris Henderson

Fishing Kayaks of Gig Harbor

Well I haven’t sent in a report lately because I have been deer hunting and the Wavewalks were not involved. But now it is on to ducks and the Wavewalks are an essential part of our arsenal.
We have long paddles in strong currents and in rough weather and the Wavewalk handles it just fine!
The W700 is particularly good as a duck boat. Two hunters can carry their gear and tandem paddling makes the currents no big deal.

On this trip we were able to use the outgoing tide as well as the current from a river to make the trip back home easy. According to the GPS we were doing 7-8 mph paddling with the current.

I have designed a blind for the boat but have yet to finish building it.

Most of the time the Wavewalks are only used as transportation. We are also able to transport 3 dozen deeks, two hunters, shooting boxes, guns, camo nets, all in the W700!

Enjoying the stability and versatility of the these kayaks.

Here are a few pictures from our latest duck hunt.

double

Double

drake-crush

Drake crush

ducks-in-the-deeks

Ducks in the deeks

wigeon-down

Wigeon down

 

More kayak rigging, fishing and duck hunting with Chris »

Great duck hunting boat!

By Chris Henderson

Fishing Kayaks of Gig Harbor

This is the first duck hunting season we have used both the W500 and the W700 as duck hunting boats and they are doing great!
It would be easy to put a blind on it (we have one all designed) but we mostly use the boats for transportation.
The area we hunt is tidal mud flat.  So the cover is minimal, actually non-existent.   We sit on beach chairs in the mud and pretend to be a log.   However, where the Wavewalk’s shine is in getting us to the spot.
We paddle for 1.5miles over water that runs from 6 inches to 20 feet, with lots of logs, mussel beds, and all sorts of things that are a constant danger to motorized boats.  In addition once we get to the spot we will be on the move the whole day.  For instance yesterday’s tide went from 1.9 feet at 3 am to a 14.4 feet at 9:54 am and then back to 4.9 feet at 4:43 pm.  We hunted from 5 am until about 4:00pm.  So we saw and moved through most of that. We start on a mud flat, retreat to a log and end up back on the mud flat.   It is work intensive hunting!
The Wavewalk makes it possible for a couple of reasons.
One it handles the current and wind with great proficiency.  Tidal current is a constant, one direction or the other.  In addition, this is the mouth of the Nisqually river, so you have a lot of water coming from there.  And it seems there is always a wind and often with accompanying waves.  With the Wavewalk you are able to paddle through all of this and feel secure knowing that you can handle it.  It is not just a convenience it is a safety issue.
We are paddling in water that has a constant temperature year round of 54 degrees, but the air temperature yesterday started at 24 degrees raising to a balmy 36, and oh yeah we paddle to the spot in the dark.  If you get in trouble you are on your own.
Often people ask me why not put a motor on it?  For one simple reason; MUD!  We move about 200 yards between low and high tides and then back again.   During that we are dragging our boats forward and backward with the tide.  We drag them in mud that can actually be a danger if you get stuck. The Coast guard had to airlift rescue a duck hunter from this marsh already this year who was stuck in the mud.  Dragging 60 or 80 lbs of boat through mud is a challenge, but if you added the weight of a motor it would become impractical.
The second reason the Wavewalks are so perfect for this hunting is the sheer storage.  In the W700 I am able to transport 36 decoys, camo blankets for the boat and hunters, shotgun, lawn chair, hunting bucket, thermos, and myself with ease.  In fact there is so much room in W700’s it hauls all of the decoys!

Yesterday I was able to take a friend who had never hunted in this way and put him in a Wavewalk for the first time.  He is a big fellow so I put him in the W700.  With very little effort he was comfortably  and efficiently paddling, and we had a great hunt.

These boats are not just for fishing but they make great duck boats as well. So far this duck season the Wavewalks have gotten us 63 ducks, and we still have January to go!

Loving the Wavewalk as a great duck boat!  Enjoy a few pictures of the season!

 

chucks ducks

Wavewalk 700 (front) and Wavewalk 500 (back), guns, and ducks…

 

decoys-floating

 

duck-decoys-floating

 

duck-decoys-viewed-from-the-beach

 

duck-hunters-shooting-from-the-beach

 

duck-hunter-standing-in-the-water

 

duck-hunters-with-camo-paint

 

duck-hunter-with-boats

 

More fishing and duck hunting with Chris »