Kayak Fishing Ultimate Resource

Friday, 15 September 2017 04:16

7 Essential Items To Have With You on Kayak Fishing Trips

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Ask ten kayak angling enthusiasts about what they deem to be essential items for fishing trips and you are likely to get ten very different answers. 

Obviously, space is quite limited on a kayak, so you don’t have the luxury of carrying around an entire shop with you. However, there are a couple of things that can make life out on the water a little more convenient as well as safer for you. Here is just a short list of some of the essentials that you’ll definitely want to keep around at all times. Most are small enough to tuck away in your PFD for easy access while others can be kept in a storage compartment in case of emergencies.


One of the most essential tools you can take along on a fishing trip is a trusty knife. In fact, if you have the space to take along two knives, it is even better. The first should be a decent quality fishing knife that you keep accessible at all times in case of an emergency. Ideally, the knife should be attached to your PFD, so you can use it to cut through lines in the event you ever get stuck in them during a capsize. For longer trips, it is also a good idea to take along a good fillet knife, which will enable you to clean and cut your catches back on shore. The fillet knife can be kept tucked away in a hatch or crate, unless you have the folding variety that is compact enough to keep close at hand. There are no shortage of knives of either variety available aimed directly at kayak angling enthusiast, so check out our reviews for a good idea of what is on offer.

Multi-Function Tool

Since space is so valuable on a kayak, it is a huge advantage to take along tools that can fulfill more than one useful function. This is why something like the “Splizzors” comes highly recommended. It is basically a combination of scissors and pliers that can handle a multitude of tasks without wasting any space. Splizzors are compact enough to attach to your PDF and can be used to cut even braided and high-performance fishing line due to the high edge pressure it can exert. With it, you can do everything from bending and crimping to hook removal as well as cutting and trimming. Best of all, it even has a bottle opener, so you can use it to open a cold beverage back at camp.  

Signaling Device

A signaling device can save your life if you are ever in need of help when out alone in your kayak. Fortunately, there are a variety of ways to signal for help and most of them won’t take up too much space. Emergencies can occur even in seemingly safe conditions, and being able to signal for assistance could make all the difference in the world. The simplest visual signal device is a signal mirror, which can easily be kept in a PFD pocket. The downside, of course, is that it can only be used on sunny days. For cloudy days or low visibility, a whistle makes for a good sound signaling device. Once again, these are small enough to keep on you and most good PFDs already have a whistle attached. A foghorn or air horn is also suitable as sound signaling devices for low visibility conditions or to warn larger vessels that are on a collision course with your kayak. Finally, flares or glow sticks can come in handy for early morning or night time expeditions.


A compass might not seem necessary, but having one handy ensures that you always know your directions. This can save you a lot of trouble in case you become disoriented due to poor visibility or lose sight of the shore while fishing. A lot of people think that they don’t need a compass if they carry their phone with them, but unlike a phone, your compass isn’t going to end up with a flat battery out on open water. There are a variety of compass options to choose from, ranging from a deck-mounted one that you can attach to the deck of your kayak, to compact ones that can be attached to your PFD. The former is easier to read while you are busy with other tasks while the latter takes up less space and are also convenient to use on dry land.

Sun Protection

Kayak angling can be very relaxing, but without proper precautions to safeguard against the sun, it can also be hazardous to your health. Sunburn or sunstroke can occur even on cloudy days, so it is better to be safe than sorry if you plan on spending a lot of time on the water. A wide brimmed hat can help against the sun along with a good pair of polarized sunglasses. You can get a nasty sunburn on your face from the sun reflecting off the surface of the water, so for any areas that are still exposed use some waterproof sunscreen, which can also be kept in your PFD if you need to reapply it. A buff is also a handy way to keep your face out of the sun. Finally, you shouldn’t underestimate the importance of staying hydrated. Thirst can sap your energy and cause you to be less alert, so take along either a few water bottles or a hydration bladder depending on how long you plan to be fishing.

Safety Gear

While there isn’t enough space on a kayak to take along your whole medicine cabinet, it is a good idea to have most of the essentials nearby. This includes a small first aid kit which contains most of the essential items needed for wound care. First aid kits come in all shapes and sizes, but compact ones for kayaks typically contain adhesive bandages, sterile gauze pads, insect-sting relief, antiseptic cleansing wipes, mini tweezers and so on. Another good item to have on board your kayak is a throw bag. Rope is something that always comes in handy and a throw bag makes it easier to toss it to someone in need of help.

Duct Tape

Duct tape is one of the most useful materials on the planet and comes in just as handy onboard a kayak. From making emergency repairs to your paddle or other equipment to taking care of blisters, doubling as emergency bandage strips and much more, there is no reason not to bring along a roll of duct tape. 

Last modified on Friday, 29 September 2017 16:39
Naomi Bolton

Yakangler's Community Manager and Editor - in charge of sourcing news and articles for the website. ┬áIf you have any ideas for new content, please do get in touch with me at: [email protected]

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