Seven years ago I did not know one end of a kayak from the other. Now I have sold a lot of my shore fishing gear and I couldn’t really imagine many fishing trips without using a kayak. Be warned; kayak fishing is an incredibly addictive branch of the sport of angling but it is also so liberating. When you fish from a kayak you get a totally different perspective on angling. You sit practically on the water’s surface. Kayak fishing brings you so much closer to nature than boat fishing and truly is a sport that is accessible to nearly everybody.
Sheer versatility is one of the main selling points of kayak fishing. There are very few waters where you cannot carry or drag your kayak to the shoreline and launch without the need for a boat slip. Long stretches of shoreline along the coast are opened up with a kayak. Transporting the kayak to these new fishing areas is also an easy task; no need for trailers, no need for heavy engines to pull trailers, no need for fuel tanks and no need for mooring fees. Secure the kayak to the roof bars and you are ready to go and fish almost anywhere.
Once you manage to get onto the water more merits of using a kayak become apparent. Needing only a couple of inches of water beneath you to get moving allows access to areas that boats just cannot get near. Shallow stretches of shoreline are now fishable, sandbars on low tides can be traversed with ease, sneaking through kelp beds is not a problem. None of these areas could be exploited with a boat and engine without running the risk of potentially doing some serious damage to your craft and your pride!
When you sit on a kayak you are brought so much closer to nature than you ever will be with a boat and engine. Sights, sounds and smells that used to be just out of reach are now brought tantalisingly close to you as an angler. I have been able to paddle right up behind sea birds and seals, only startling them when I have been almost within touching distance. On clearer waters I have been able to pass right over fish lying only a few feet deep, the fish not even flinching as I carry on. The kayak is a quiet, non-invasive craft and is ideal for stealth fishing.
And as for the fishing itself, I know that plenty of people say that they don’t care whether they catch large or small fish but I honestly mean it. To me, catching wrasse is as much fun as trotting for mullet or battling tope against a running tide. They are all special feelings in their own right but what makes them extra special is experiencing them from a kayak. With kayak fishing it is just you. You and the fish. Using a kayak brings you so much closer to the action. It forces you almost into their domain and when you do get the better of one, the only place to ‘land’ it is into your lap. For me, no type of angling brings you closer to Nature and closer to the fish than kayak fishing and now that I have immersed myself in it, fishing from the shore just does not have the same appeal that it once did…..
Article seen in Sea Angler