Fishing kayaks are a great way to go fishing on the water. They’re portable, stable, and can accommodate a wide variety of gear. Before buying one, it’s important to consider your needs and budget. Once you have a good idea of what you want, you can start browsing for the best fishing kayaks that fit your specifications.
Stability: The stability of your kayak is one of the most important factors when deciding on which boat to buy. Bigger guys and those with limited mobility need more stable platforms to get in and out of while smaller, more nimble anglers can be very efficient in narrower, less stable kayaks.
Length: The length of your kayak will determine how easy it is to maneuver and turn around in tight spaces. Shorter fishing kayaks are better for kids and light adults while longer boats are ideal for open water or for multiple anglers.
Comfort: Kayaks with comfortable seats are a must, especially if you plan to spend a lot of time on them. Some models offer advanced seating options that can adjust up and down to match the paddler’s weight, inclination, and body type.
Size: The size of your fishing kayak should also be a factor, especially if you’re a beginner. Smaller kayaks are easier to handle and less likely to flip, while larger, more robust fishing boats can be more challenging to carry to and from the water.
Storage: Whether you’re a single angler or a group, it’s important to have a place to store your gear. Look for kayaks that have built-in racks or storage baskets to keep your things close at hand.
Accessories: Add-ons can make your kayak even more useful, such as rod holders and rails for mounting gear. You can also install a trolling motor or sail to make your fishing experience even more exciting and fun.
Rudders: Having a rudder on your fishing kayak will help you track in wind, and they can be easily readjusted with foot pedals so you’re always tracking correctly. A rudder can also make it easier to steer the kayak in reverse, making it more responsive to changing conditions.
Standing Decks: Having a kayak with a standing deck is a great feature for fishing in rough or rocky conditions. The deck on your kayak should be flat and padded, so that you can stand comfortably on it and make casts.
Gear Tracks: Some kayaks come with gear tracks, which allow you to attach your equipment without drilling holes. These features can make it easier to mount your phone or fish finder, and they’re particularly handy for beginners who aren’t sure how to install their own fittings.
Dry Storage: Having dry storage in your fishing kayak is key, and can be particularly important when you’re paddling in cold weather. It’s essential to have a place to store your electronics, dry bags, and other items that aren’t on top of the boat.
The best fishing kayaks will have plenty of storage space, but it’s important to keep in mind that the hull will need to balance out any extra weight that’s added with storage. A kayak with a lot of storage will be heavier to haul to and from the water, so choose carefully.