Kayak Fishing Ultimate Resource

Wednesday, 03 January 2018 08:56

Saltwater Kayak Angling Tips

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Kayak angling can be a very relaxing experience where you get to enjoy the tranquility of nature and take a break from the daily grind. Of course, it can also be very dangerous if you are not careful, especially when you go saltwater kayak angling. This isn’t to say that accidents can’t happen on calm waters, but when braving saltwater there are a lot of extra precautions that need to be taken.

Doing so will not only keep you safe, but will also be better for your gear. So, if you feel that you are ready to add saltwater kayak angling to your resume, here are some tips that are worth keeping in mind. Even if you have plenty of experience with kayak fishing in the ocean, it’s still worth a reminder of what you need to do.

Invest In A Good PFD

Every angler should be familiar with the importance of owning a good personal flotation device, but for those who engage in saltwater fishing, it is an even bigger deal. It doesn’t matter how much faith you have in your swimming skills, the ocean is not the same as freshwater and if you end up in it you will be grateful for your PFD.

Be Visible

Visibility is a big factor when you go angling in saltwater as you’ll be in the same water as a lot bigger boats compared to rivers or dams. A kayak that is more visible from the air also makes a lot of sense if something goes wrong and you need to be rescued. This means that as stylish as grey or blue colored kayaks look, they are going to make you a lot harder to spot in the ocean. The same goes for kayaks that are white, especially if the waves become choppy. Instead, it is probably better to opt for a kayak that has the most visible colors, which are either yellow, orange or red.

Know  Your Environment

The ocean can be unpredictable, so it is a good idea from a safety standpoint to educate yourself as much as possible about the environment that you’ll be facing. This includes knowing what the tidal range is for the day, when the tide is expected to turn as well as the direction and strength of the tide you the area you are planning to do your angling. This type of information is typically readily available online, so there is no excuse to go out without knowing exactly what to expect. Storms are also very dangerous in open water, so taking along a weather radio will ensure that you are not caught off-guard. Speaking of the environment, you’ll also be dealing with the elements, so make sure that you are wearing the proper clothes and have adequate protection from the sun.

Keep Your Paddles (And Other Gear) Secured

Losing your paddle when you are in the middle of a placid lake can be a real nuisance, losing it when you are in the ocean could be life-threatening. Depending on how choppy the water is, chasing down a paddle that is floating away  is going to be a lot more dangerous in saltwater than in freshwater. To avoid having to face this type of situation, make sure that your paddle is secured to your kayak while you are busy with your fishing rod or other gear. It is easy to get distracted and not notice that your paddle has slipped off the kayak and is busy disappearing over the horizon. A lot of ocean kayaks feature paddle holders to keep your paddle out of the way and secure, but you can also use a paddle lease to ensure it stays attached. The same goes for the rest of your gear, if the kayak flips you might be able to get back in, but anything that wasn’t securely properly will end up on the bottom of the ocean.

Emergency Communication Gear Is A Must

Getting in touch with someone can save your life if something goes seriously wrong. It might be tempting to take only a cell phone, but not recommended. In addition to a cell phone, you should also have at least a VHF radio and, just as importantly, know what the proper protocols for using it is. You might not always be able to rely on a communication device, so alternative methods of signifying your emergency, such as flares should also be available.

Wash Your Gear

Washing your fishing gear after a saltwater fishing trip won’t save your life, but it can save you a lot of money in the long run. Any anglers who have neglected doing so will be familiar with just how corrosive saltwater can be to your gear. Simply rising everything off with fresh water and using water repellent lubricant afterwards can make a huge difference to the longevity of your gear.

Inspect Your Kayak Before Going Out

Inspecting your kayak before going out on the ocean can save you the trouble of discovering any issues when it is already too late to do anything. As mentioned earlier, saltwater can be harsh on your gear and exposure to UV radiation only makes matters worse. The most common issues are bungees or lines becoming degraded, but a thorough inspection could reveal more serious problems. This is especially important if your kayak is in storage for a long time between trips.

Don’t Do It Alone

Saltwater kayak angling is a lot more enjoyable if you go out with someone who has a bit more experience than you have. They’ll be able to show you the ropes and you’ll be able to keep an eye on each other in case of trouble. It is definitely not a good idea to go out alone if you are not experienced with saltwater kayak angling as it is a different beast compared to saltwater angling. 

Read 1240 times Last modified on Wednesday, 03 January 2018 09:10
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]


# reelsaltyakangling 2018-02-01 09:03
Also...1.)leave with someone on land a written float plan with as much detail as possible 2.) be 100% certain you can right your yak and re-enter it in water of depths over your head in case you flip 3.) know what may be in the water other than your targeted fish - catches kept on a stringer where sharks may be present can lead to a harrowing and un-nerving experience.

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