[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s people continue to discover kayak fishing as an alternative to power boats, the questions often come up about the differences. Some of the first answers are the quiet, serenity, oneness with nature etc. Beyond that are some differences fishing in kayaks that every powerboat guy should know first.
You know that 300 pounds of crankbaits and soft plastics you carried in your SuperSpeed Gofast powerboat? You will most likely need to pair that down to four or five Plano boxes and you’ll meet people on the water who only carry one. The more extra stuff in your boat, the more you have to pull through the water.
To avoid turning a kayak fishing trip into a kayak paddling trip, pre-planning the areas you are going to target is important. Doing some homework, making a float plan, and keeping logs becomes even more important in a kayak.
In most kayak tournaments, especially freshwater, a camera captures the images of your fish on a measuring device. The winner doesn’t have the most weight but rather the longest fish. Getting good with a camera, with one hand, with an angry fish on your lap? That IS a thing in the kayak world so you better brush up on the ninja hand skills.
If you were to buy one of the most expensive kayaks made it would be cheaper than most outboard motors on a bass boat. I bought a $200 kayak and fished out of it for almost seven years without having to put another nickel into it. That’s pretty cost efficient. I covered hundreds of water miles and paid nothing for gas. Aside from that, I didn’t have to pay for registration, maintenance, oil or storage. If I did spend money it was on equipment.
In a kayak you have to become a little bit of a meteorologist. You can’t outrun a storm with a paddle in your hand. Apps, watching forecasts and even NOAA radios help keep the kayaker in the know. If we don’t get a 30-minute jump on a storm, we may just have to ride it out.
A bass boat is very stable. With a 96-inch beam and 21-feet from stem to stern it is a floating fortress of bass yanking real estate. A kayak isn’t. Some of the widest kayaks are at 40-inches. Before you start trying to lip pierce with the ferocity of the Hulk, catch a few fish in the kayak with a mellower hookset. Learn where the leaning points and stability points are on your kayak. If you are going to go King Kong hookset the first time in a kayak, make sure it’s in the summer in warm water and you are wearing a lifejacket.
That pretty bass boat can get into some remote areas but nothing like a kayak. I can float and paddle or pole in some water less than six inches deep. Add to that that I have a lower profile and I can fish in trees your hanging your jigs in. The other thing is, I am so quiet the fish don’t care that I am there. I’m just a log in the water. There are few cooler things than doing some close quarters combat with a bass that power boats can’t get to. It’s like a bass oasis all to myself.
If this list doesn’t really do it for you, maybe the bass boat is a good place to stay. I just wanted to make sure you had a little insider knowledge before you join the kayak fishing family.