Fishing is undoubtedly one of the most relaxing pastimes in the world; there’s nothing better than sitting out on the lake underneath the warm glow of the sun, simply waiting for your next catch to take the bait.
It’s no wonder that so many people are looking into new ways to fish! Whether it’s a hybrid rod, a new type of bait or even an inflatable kayak, hobbyists are always looking for ways to improve their game.
Kayaks are becoming an increasingly popular solution. Not only can they take you far away from the shore (and the other fishers!), but they can transport you to an idyllic, serene place - perfect for those who like to fish in solitude!
Naturally, picking out the right kayak for you can be a daunting challenge, but don’t worry; throughout this article, we’ll take a look at the fundamental aspects to consider, along with a few of the most desirable traits.
Let’s jump right in:
One of the most popular solutions in today’s market is the inflatable variant of fishing kayak that most outdoor stores seem to stock in abundance.
As a cheap, reliable option, it makes sense that so many people are utilizing inflatable fishing kayaks! They can perform just as well as their solid-state counterparts, and at a fraction of the cost.
But - is an inflatable fishing kayak the right choice for you?
As a ‘cheaper’ option, inflatable boats are usually less durable than plastic models. Whilst they’re a great option for large, open bodies of water, we’d recommend AGAINST using them for white-water or rocky creeks.
We all know how easy it is to pop a balloon, and in the right conditions, it can be just as easy to puncture an inflatable fishing kayak! With this in mind, an inflatable option is only recommended for those who:
It’s also important to note that as inflatable fishing kayaks are light-weight, they may not be able to support as much gear as traditional options.
Next, we’ll take a look at ‘sit-on-top’ kayaks. These are an incredible ‘beginner’ option for anyone who has never owned (or used) a kayak before, as they’re sink-resistant and VERY easy to learn.
If you’ve been looking at any sit on top kayak, you’ll have likely noticed that they’re usually solid-state; you won’t need to inflate them every time you wish to head out on the water, and you can’t puncture them like you can with an inflatable fishing kayak!
As a heavier boat, it’s also much more likely to be able to carry all of your fishing gear - meaning that you can spend longer on the water!
Sit on top kayaks are usually more expensive than other models, but don’t let this put you off; it’s an investment that will undoubtedly pay off, providing you with a long-lasting and durable piece of kit that can perform well in most (if not all) weather conditions.
Sit on top kayaks are recommended for those who:
Sit-on-top kayaks are much easier to learn than sit-inside variants, which is why they’re so universally loved.
Unfortunately, kayaks can end up costing a LOT of money, which might put a significant amount of fishers off of making a purchase. Good news: they don’t need to be so expensive.
There are plenty of kayaks on the market for $1000 or less, from sit-on-top models and inflatable fishing kayaks alike. It’s important to remember that the cost WILL impact the overall quality though, so the more you spend, the better the kayak will be.
If you’re looking to spend a bit more on a fishing kayak, we recommend using the Ocean Kayak Prowler 13. It’s 1 3” by 4”, so you’ll have ample space to carry everything you’ll need - it does, however, carry a price tag of $800+.
On the lower end of the spectrum, you can find the Sea Eagle 330 Deluxe. It comes with a price tag of around $200-$300, but it’s a two-seater inflatable fishing kayak - making it very easy to transport from your home to the lake.
So, you’ve chosen which kayak best suits your needs. Next, you’ll need to find a way to transport your new kayak:
Choosing a kayak roof rack can be just as troublesome as picking out the kayak itself. Luckily, there are plenty of roof rack options, perfect for any price range. Here are a handful of our favorites:
A more expensive option would be the Rhino-Rack 570 series; whilst it does carry a price tag of $137, it’s guaranteed to be long-lasting - it even comes with a 5-year warranty.
To summarise, the most important things that you’ll need to consider are your personal preferences, along with the price that you’re willing to pay.
There are plenty of ‘cheaper’ options on the market, all of which still do a fantastic job of keeping you afloat - even on rough waters! However, you may prefer the reliability and durability of a more expensive option.
You should also consider whether you’d prefer to make use of an inflatable model; they might not be as long-lasting, but they’re much easier to transport and are often significantly cheaper.
Finally, you should ask yourself if you’d like a ‘sit-on-top’ kayak or one that allows you to sit inside the boat; again, this is down to how you prefer to fish.
There’s a LOT to consider, but a kayak can be a large investment. As long as you pick the right kayak for you, you’re bound to benefit from years of enjoyment to come.