A Unique Perspective: Kayak Fishing
Enjoying fishing from a kayak is a unique experience, and, like fishing from a boat or on shore, has a unique set of requirements and safety guidelines. Preparedness is key for kayak fishing, perhaps even more so than boat or land fishing, because of its limited mobility and slower pace. To ensure you have all your bases covered, do your research on what kind of “essentials” you’ll need to kayak fish in your area safely and successfully. Here is a cheat sheet to get you started. Beyond the basics – kayak (not to mention understanding how to use a kayak), paddle, rod, reel, tackle, and bait – you may also need:
Rod and Paddle Leashes
You do NOT want to be stranded without a paddle when kayak fishing! Keeping your rod and paddle tethered to your kayak will allow you to fish free of worry.
A small utility knife is great to have in an emergency situation (if your kayak tips and you are snagged on something) and for more everyday uses like cutting bait, line, etc.
Great to have one that will last even when submerged in water … just in case.
PFD and Whistle
A personal flotation device and whistle are both required by the Coast Guard as safety precautions when operating a kayak.
First Aid Kit
Including bandages, disinfectant and tweezers – it’s always a smart thing to have. Some fishing kayak enthusiasts opt to put a mirror in their first aid kit as well.
Kayaks can move around a great deal in rocky waters, so it’s good to have a small anchor to keep in the same spot once you’ve found a good one. A lighter folding anchor will allow for easy storage and the ability to stay put.
For keeping valuables, snacks – you name it. It’s nice to have a few things safeguarded against the water.
Required for night fishing. This small LED light sits on top of a long rod, making you easily detectable by other vessels.
There are also a few “luxury” items that may prove helpful in your kayaking, like a GPS or compass for navigation, a fish finder (it is a lot more time consuming to hunt for fish in a kayak than a fishing boat), and a live tank well. A comfortable seat is also suggested, since you want to make sure you stay comfortable for a full day of fishing!