Paddlin and Fishing

By: Dan Carns

If you’ve been following my articles in the Coastal Angler Magazine over the years you already know that I don’t write fishing forecasts as there are already a slew of highly qualified anglers and Captain’s issuing monthly updates on where to go and what to use. Although I do write about fishing technique and some of my articles are about special trips and locations the majority of them tend to focus on everything specific to kayaks and kayak fishing.

In full disclosure I am also a Pro Staff team member and representative for Vanhunks Boarding out of Sarasota Fl. What is most remarkable about my job, is that I get to travel the country while fishing, filming, and writing about their product lines. Often, I’m asked “what is the best kayak for me” or “what kind of setup do I need and what kind of safety gear and training should I have?”, you get the idea. The answer to these questions is found in asking you, “what do you plan to do with it”?

There are now an extraordinary array of kayaks, and it can be hard to decide. Do you want a lighter weight sit inside (SI) kayak that can be simply thrown in the back of your truck?  Are you looking for exercise, or do you want to travel great distances? Will you be alone, or do you want to paddle in a tandem kayak? Are you an angler and do you want to be able to stand up in a kayak? Before you enter a kayak shop consider all the ways you want to use your new craft and where will you launch it. Also consider how you plan to transport it as the new Sit On TOP (SOT) kayaks can be heavier and you might need help loading it. Do you have a roof rack? Can you use a truck bed extender like the Boondox or can you tow one of the new kayak trailers both of which Vanhunks carries including the new inflatable roof rack if your vehicle doesn’t have one. Many new kayaks are a technical marvel and have moving parts. Some adjustments may be necessary as time goes along so have a little tool kit on hand and if you’re really rough on parts like me they may need to be replaced after a while.

A visit to our shop in Sarasota or one of our distributers will help you narrow things down like length, weight and width, or how many assessory tracks do you need. Will your new kayak have rod holders or dry storage compartments? Some of our distributors are on the water like Gulf Coast Kayak in Matlacha Fl. where its possible to try one out on the water. Vanhunks has a launch location in Sarasota so if you wish to try before you buy come visit us and we’ll try to help you make all these decisions beforehand!


It’s A Wild World-Get Out There!

Fishman Dan

@ paddlinandfishin