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What'sThe Best Kayak For Fishing?

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On: Thu, May 31, 2012 at 3:11PM | By: Captain Jesse Nofi

What'sThe Best Kayak For Fishing?

“What’s the best kayak for fishing” often arises when a customer wants to purchase a fishing kayak. The answer is, there are many kayaks that are “the best” for fishing; and certain kayaks are ideal for specific types of kayaking and fishing, plus there are a few kayaks considered to be all-around fishing kayaks. In a nutshell, there may be a kayak that’s ideal for you and the type of paddling and fishing you do.

In order to be comfortable, and efficiently accomplish your goals, you should get a kayak that’s right for your physical size, the areas you fish, and the type of fishing you’ll be doing. This article will give you a better understanding of how to choose the best kayak for you. As you’ll find with all of your outdoor experiences, having the ideal yak and gear makes your trips more enjoyable. Perhaps the best suggestion I can give is that it’s most important to buy a quality product that lasts the long haul, rather than a cheap version that doesn’t effeciently do what it’s supposed to.

Let’s address some determining factors in the purchase of a kayak.

What kind of waters do you plan to paddle in? Rivers? Lakes? Beaches? Bays? Flats? Are you paddling strictly in calm areas? Will you be traveling long distance? Are you paddling in rough currents? Are there waves? Will you go out on windy days?

Certain kayaks have a hull designed for calm waters; other yaks have a hull design that can handle everything from flat water to waves a few feet high. The areas you plan to frequent will help determine the ideal kayak for you.

What type of paddle fishing you plan to do? Will you frequently get in and out of the kayak? Are you sight-fishing? Are you fly-fishing? Are you cast-netting?

Ocean Kayak:
An Industry Leader – The Trident 11, 13, and 15
Since its beginnings Ocean Kayak has been a leader in the kayak industry. Their Scupper Pro and Prowler 13 models are amongst the most popular fishing kayaks ever made. After thousands of enthusiasts purchased and enjoyed the Prowler 13 angler edition, Ocean Kayak decided to make its new and improved design, the Trident series. The series offers 11-, 13-, and 15-foot models, all rigged and ready to go fishing.With a more comfortable seat, updated adjustable foot pegs, more storage space, and the rod pod or rod storage feature, the new Trident series also includes a reinforced keel guard.

The replaceable reinforced keel guard allows for pulling the kayak through dirt, sand, and other rough environments while preventing wear and tear on the yak’s hull. Once this part begins to wear, it can be replaced with another reinforcement if needed.

Trident series also includes two flush-mount rod holders in the rear, and one rod holder in front of your seat which can be set in 5 different places at whichever angle you prefer. This rod holder pops into one of the holes on the rod pod which is the oval shaped hatch you can see in the center of the kayak.

The rule of thumb with these kayaks is as you increase in boat length, tracking increases, along with speed and the ability to handle choppy waters. As kayaks decrease in size, they become easier to manuever when turning, and are lighter in weight. The longer boats will be a few pounds heavier.

The Trident 13 is an all-around paddling and fishing machine. It’s stable enough to sight-fish from in shallow calm waters, and has a hull design that handles waves, wind, and fast currents. If you’re looking for a sit-on-top kayak for all around use, including paddling and fishing in various conditions; go with the Trident 13. For the majority of our guided fishing trips, our clients get to use the Trident 11, 13, and 15. Depending on the tidal and weather conditions we choose either the shorter or longer model of these kayaks. On a day of strictly flats fishing or in calm waters, I‘ll paddle the Trident 11. When paddling uptide in fast currents, I like to step it up to the Trident 13 or 15. They make it easier to cut through the water better, getting to the honey holes easier, and making the paddle more enjoyable.

Overall, I prefer the Trident 11 for fishing calm grass flats, salt marsh estuaries, and similar areas with slow or minimal tidal flow; Once again, if you plan to frequent areas with fast currents then pick up a Trident 13 or 15 for better tracking and speed.
Below is a picture of the Trident 13. It also comes with adjustable foot pegs which aren’t in the picture. Since alot of people like the bright yellow, we’re sharing this particular picture.

Native Ultimate Series:
Taking the Kayak Fishing Industry by Storm.
The Native Ultimate series is a hybrid between a sit-inside and sit-on-top kayak. It has a double hull or catamaran-style hull which makes it more stable than every other kayak and canoe on the market. This makes it very easy to stand in, sight-fish from, and especially fly-fish from. I taught one of my clients to throw a cast net, and in the same day, he was cast-netting while standing in the Ultimate 12. If you’re looking for something stable, with plenty of legroom and storage space, go with a Native Ultimate series.

Because of the Hybrid wide open hull design, these kayaks have more than enough room to store gear, a cooler, and anything you can think of, which makes the yak ideal for fishing. Whenever my clients and I are fly-fishing, we do it from the Ultimate 12. It’s very easy to manuever, easy to carry, and is a dream to fish from.

Right now, Ocean Kayak and Native Ultimate are the top two brands of kayaks I use for kayaking, fishing, and guiding kayak fishing trips. The next article will be an extension of this article and introduce peddle kayaks which are foot-powered. We’ll also introduce a kayak ideal for the person well above average size. Until next time, come in and see me at Osprey Bay Outdoors in Clearwater, FL. Thank you for reading the article; if you have any questions feel free to come visit me in person or call on the phone. I work Saturdays and Sundays from open until close.

Now get off your computer and get outdoors!!!

Captain Jesse Nofi
Phone: 727.524.9670

Photo Gallery (click a thumbnail to enlarge)



RoadKill | 8:57AM (Fri, Jun 1, 2012)

great information, been looking at Kayaks for some time now....

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