Kayak Fishing: How to Get Started

Susie Busta // April 26

Disclaimer: I am pretty new to kayak fishing. I don’t have all the tips and answers, but I wanted to share my journey so far and what I’ve learned when it comes to kayak fishing.

I got into kayak fishing about 3 years ago. Our son was just a newborn and we don’t have family close to watch him. I wasn’t comfortable backing and loading a boat, but I desperately still wanted to fish. My supportive husband gifted me a kayak.

kayak fishing

Choosing a Kayak for Fishing

There are a number of different variations of fishing kayaks you can choose from. From sit-on to sit-in, peddle (peddle with your feet) to paddle (with a paddle, sometimes sold with, sometimes you must purchase separately), different chair variations (some sit higher than others, different levels of support), different options for storage (front, back, live wells), accessories (rod holders, fishfinder mounts), etc. Paddle kayaks are typically at a lower price point. Peddle kayaks can get as expensive as small boats.

Find a kayak that is right for you. If you can go into a store and try one out, do it. If you have a friend who has one, ask to borrow it. This is an investment and you want to ensure you purchase something that you are comfortable loading, unloading, and fishing with. Here are some checkpoints for you to think about when choosing a fishing kayak.

Here's what to consider when choosing a kayak

  • Price
  • Durability – look at reviews, do research!
  • Ease of loading and unloading
  • Does it have the storage I need?
  • Length – will it fit on the mode of transportation I will use to take it to the lake?
  • Will paddling hinder my fishing?
  • What accessories are needed and what will they do to my price range? Anchor, paddle, lifejacket, fish finder, etc.
  • Am I comfortable in it?
  • Can I return it if it comes damaged or I find I can’t use it?
fishing kayaks

Here's my own setup

My first kayak was a sit-on, paddle, Pelican Sentinel. I enjoy the sit-on kayaks instead of the sit-in because they allow me to feel closer to the water and allow for, I believe, more range of movement. I had to purchase a paddle and then re-purchase a paddle because I forgot mine at a landing.

I have a phone holder and removable anchor and that is all that I have added to my kayak. I have no complaints about my Pelican Sentinel. I’ve been able to easily load and unload it myself. It fits in the bed of my truck just fine. It has allowed me to catch a lot of fish and experience fishing in an amazing way. This Spring I invested in a peddle kayak, a HooDoo Tempest and I am excited to get it and review it, hopefully in a later post.

Hopefully, this helps you get started if you are looking at doing some kayak fishing!

About the Author

Susie Busta

To sum it up - Wife, Mom, Hunter, Fisher, all-around outdoorsy woman!
I am a new Mom and I love involving our son in everything we do outdoors, watching him experience things for the first time is truly better than any trophy fish or animal. I also enjoy sharing my experiences with other outdoors mothers, in hopes we can learn from each other. Continuing your outdoor activities is not easy with a little one, tips and tricks come in handy! I try to be real with my experiences, all the ups and downs since we all have them and they make us human. I hope that by sharing my passion and stories of the outdoors it may spark another woman or mother to pursue something they didn’t think they could do.