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Wanting a kayak

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Wanting a kayak

Postby DennyB » Fri Apr 19, 2019 2:41 pm

I'm 65 years old and have never put a foot in a kayak. I wade fish streams and rivers in middle and east Tn but I'm looking for a way to fish those parts of the rivers that are too deep for me to wade. I'm really thinking of a pedal kayak to keep my hands free to fish.

The kayaks I've researched on-line that interest me are the Coosa FD, Cruise FD, Old Town Topwater w/pedal drive, and Titan 10.5. If anyone has any insight on any of these or any other brand or model for my intended purpose, I would welcome some recommendations.
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Re: Wanting a kayak

Postby MickThompson » Mon Apr 22, 2019 7:16 pm

I have no direct experience with the specific boats you mention, but I've paddled a Coose and a Cruise. I'd imagine we have fished the same water at some point or another. The thing that would turn me off to the pedal driven rigs is their draft- the most expensive part of the boat sticks a foot or more below the bottom of the boat. If you don't bail out quick on a shoal you could ding it or possibly hit something with it and flip.

I have no problem fishing with a kayak paddle. Hit a stroke or 2, lay the paddle across your lap, then fish.It's not in the way and always handy. With practice you'll be able to handle the paddle one handed as well for small adjustments. Get an anchor trolley too so you can slow/stop your drift. You'll still spend most of your fishing time outside of the boat so keep that in mind.

Personally I prefer a solo canoe. I grew up in canoes and the kayaks I have paddled didn't have much glide like a canoe does. They are definitely squirrelier than a wide fishing kayak.
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Re: Wanting a kayak

Postby Bobyote » Sun Jul 28, 2019 3:30 pm

Why the preference of canoe over kayak? I’m looking to get a kayak to fish quite a bit on some tailwaters
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Re: Wanting a kayak

Postby Crow Terminator » Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:16 am

I just sold my kayak. It was a Vibe Sea Ghost 130 fishing kayak.

For what its worth, here is my list of things I wish I knew before I bought mine...and why I sold it. Had I of known/realized these things before, I would have never bought one to begin with.

1. Transport/Mobility -- The big allure of a kayak is that you can get access to places normal boats can't go. The trouble is...actually getting it there. The one I had, I bought for the space and stability of a larger yak. The problem with that was saw immediately....how to haul it around. If I let my tailgate down and put it in at an angle, it still stuck out 4 or 5 feet over my tailgate. I had to strap it in with rachet straps, and then had to find a place for my rods/reels and such to ride. Couldn't lay them in the back or they might go for a ride. Loading and unloading one in and out of the truck is also a beast. Mine only weighed 75 lbs but was 13 feet long. It was a handful because of the size. Then once I got it unloaded, I had to get it to the water. On concrete, those kayak dolly's work great. On the ground, mud, rocks, etc...they suck. Which translates to...you're going to be dragging that sucker from your vehicle to where you are going to launch from, and then do it all over again on the way back. Depending on your equipment (rods, tackle bag, anchor, etc) you may be looking at multiple trips to and from you vehicle. Most of the places I wanted to get to with mine, require a several hundred yard trek from the nearest parking area which means several trips back and forth to the truck/kayak and then dragging it that far.

2. Boat control...aka fish or paddle. Pick one...you're not gonna do both. Kayaks are light enough that the wind blows them everywhere...even the slightest breeze, current, etc. I found out fast why the serious kayak anglers have peddle driven kayaks and not paddle ones. You can't maintain boat control with a fishing rod in your hands. Which means in my case I was constantly picking up the paddle to keep me from washing in on the bank, or where I was trying to throw to, to fish. You can't fish without a rod. This is why so many kayak people are going to the battery power poles on the back to keep them in place. You can do similar with an anchor but there's more weight you gotta carry with you when transporting it from A to B. Retying a lure or swapping lures means you are dead in the water because you can't paddle then either. You just end up where the wind or current takes you while you tie or look for whatever other lure you want.

3. Space. Yep. A 13 foot kayak is big when carrying it or dragging it. But once you get on the seat, you are pretty much limited to what is immediately around you. This includes rods, tackle bags/boxes, drinks, etc . Mine had a big console between my legs that could carry the tackle side of things and rod holders behind me. But those big compartments in the front and on the back are all useless once you're in the chair. Unless you are as limber as a yoga instructor. Having your PFD on makes it tougher to move. I bought one of the Chinook models that was made like a fishing vest. In it, I kept a knife, pliars, etc. Even still...I needed more room. The more you fish, the more stuff it seems you can't live without and the more stuff you have...the less room you have. There's a lot of wasted space on most fishing kayaks...the big storage areas are really only good for stowing things while in transport. Some brave people will stand up in them and move all around but I was too chicken of rolling mine over. Once I was in my seat, I was there til I was ready to leave.

Those were my big 3. Most of this could easily be remedied by having a trailer to haul one on and a motor of some sort on it...trolling motor or small gas engine. But I figured that defeats the purpose of a kayak, and if you're going to get all that, you might as well get a jon boat or flat bottom where you can actually move around, store more stuff, etc.

If I had to buy a kayak again and could not buy a boat...I would go an entirely different route than what I did with the Sea Ghost. I would get a pedal driven, 10 footer with the power pole on the back. I would still have to figure out ways to get it to the water but most of my problems with actually fishing out of one would be solved. The kicker there is...for the amount of money those cost, a man can get a dang good jon boat and trailer and come out better. As far as just recreational use...mine was a blast to just get out and enjoy the day...just so long as I didn't try to fish from it. Once you got that Sea Ghost up and going, it woud fly on the water. As for me personally, I'd much rather have a boat. That's what I plan on getting.
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