About the Author: Isaac Miller considers himself an "equal opportunity angler" and will fish anything that will take a hook. Isaac often makes live internet video broadcasts when fishing from his kayaks, giving up-to-the-second reports on conditions and tackle choices. He also blogs at www.isaac-online.com and is a YakAngler.com Pro Staffer as well as Co-Host for Kayak Fishing Radio's Wild West show, PR Director for Recycled Fish, and co-owner of Green Tackle.
Few people have experienced the stillness of the Northern Pacific under a fog. The silence of the water. Air with a slight chill. And what seems to be all the Pacific Rockfish rockfish in the world just a few feet under the surface.
A number of years ago, there was a revolution in steelhead fishing: the simple marabou jig. Suspended in the water by a float, jigging steelhead is a surefire way to get into the fish. Fishermen started leaving their rolls of lead and bait behind because simple jigs were picking up fish. Bad fishermen were catching steelhead with jigs. Good fishermen were catching a ton of steelhead on jigs.
If you wear anything to keep waterproof, be it waders or a dry suit, and you spend any time kayak fishing, chances are at some point there will be a hole that will make for a miserable discovery. Breathable dry gear is expensive--a couple hundred bucks each for waders and dry tops, and much more for dry suits. Fortunately holes and small tears are easily repaired, and can bring new life to something you might otherwise shove aside and replace.
Taking care of dry gear, be it waders, dry tops, dry suits, or even breathable rain gear, is often overlooked. They are usually tossed into the back of the truck, or in a tote, and if they’re lucky, you’ll remember to pull them out, rinse them off, and hang them up to dry. While rinsing your gear is the first step to keeping it in good shape, there are additional steps to breathe life back into these breathable waterproof fabrics.
Just saw that NRS has the new 2013 NRS Chinook Mesh Back Fishing PFD live on the website now! The 2013 Chinook is a lot like the older model, but let me show you a couple cool new features.
In the left corner, you’ll see the new knife lash tab. In the past, there was another pocket here and the lash tab was attached via Velcro on the opposite side, as you can see in the older model.. You had to choose between a fly patch or the lash tab. Well, guess what most kayak fishermen went for… yep, the lash tab. Taking it off the pocket also gives the last tab more security and makes it easier to remove your safety knife when you need it the most.
You also notice the reflectors are gone. Guys fishing at night hated these reflectors because they shined too brightly when trying to take photos. This safety feature was removed, but you’ll that there is a new feature on the back of the PFD. The front of the new Chinook also features a handy coil retractor. If I remember correctly, there is another retracter in one of the pockets. The Chinook still features a handy rod holder. Didn’t notice it? See that little loop hanging from the bottom? Slide your rod butt there and then on the opposite sholder you’ll see a little velcro tab to wrap around the rod. Pretty slick, eh? This is an often overlooked feature, but its great, especially for wade fishermen.
On the backside you’ll find a reflective NRS logo and an attachment point for a safety strobe. This was previously a feature found on the cVest PFD and it is great to have on the new Chinook. You can bet I’ll have an emergency strobe on my back this year.
Believe it or not, NRS has even found a way to make the Chinook even more comfortable. The new Soft PlushFIT™ foam offers up the same 16.5lbs of added floatation, but it will contour to the body for a better fit. It’s like the memory foam of the life jacket world. As it was, the old Chinook was comfortable enough that I often forgot I had it on until I tried to get in the car. Now I might forget I have it on until I go to bed.
The NRS Chinook PFD still has the same 8-way adjustment for a custom fit, 200 denier ripstop nylon, multiple d-ring attachment points for electronics, nets, or whatever else you might want to attach, high mesh backing for maximum comfort when sitting in even the tallest of kayak seats, and now comes in 3 color options
Last year we in the PacNW complained at the lack of summer it seemed we had. It was cool the whole time, and there was some appreciable rainfall to boot. This year has been a different story. It’s been a more typical PacNW summer with comfortable (mostly) temperatures, plenty of sun, and next to nothing when it comes to rain.
Which sucks for fishing.
I spent the day on the Wilson River yesterday, just scoping things out and throwing flies to some of the resident cutthroat. The water levels were low, but not devastatingly so. The water was still moving, although just barely in some areas.
What really sucked was seeing fish, big steelhead to be exact, just hanging out in some of the slowest moving holes. It’s agonizing to see only because these fish are crazy tight-lipped right now.
Until the rains come. Then they’ll be on the bite again, and guess where I’ll be…..
If you blinked at Outdoor Retailer “Summer Market” show in Salt Lake City, you could have easily missed this new product from Scotty. The “438 Gear-Head Track Adapter” was made to interface with the YakAttack “GearTrac” system, whether you use the large GT175 or the new slender GT090 tracks.
Some folks say that Jackson Kayak has thought of everything. It’s the little details such as the scuppers found on Jackson boats that help solidify that claim. The underside of the kayak boasts some large openings that serve a couple purposes besides draining water from the deck. Their large size makes great hand holds if you’re car-topping on top of an SUV. They’re also the perfect home for your fish finder transducer.
The Jackson Kayak “Coosa” is a phenomenal platform for river fishing. As such, it’s also pretty decent running some rapids. I was looking to increase the river-running potential of the Coosa, and that really meant gaining a bit more control of the kayak. The best way to control a kayak is to wear it; to become one with it.