Expand your Kayak Fishing Frontiers with the latest in Kayak Fishing Articles, Kayaks, Equipment, and Lifestyle.


Factory Roof Rack ... Fail!
Sunday, 07 September 2014
One of the fun parts of the trips we take is that we get to beat up on equipment. In the past we've broken rods, electronics, mounts, and records. Our recent trip to Kodiak was no exception. Thud! We had just bounced over a... Read more...


Pursuing the Prehistoric
Sunday, 28 December 2014
In August of 2014 I embarked on the greatest journey of my fishing career to date; A week long solo expedition chasing one of North America’s largest freshwater predators, the Alligator Gar. I began dreaming up this trip as... Read more...


Take The Long Way Home
Sunday, 02 November 2014
Take The Long Way Home My brother Gus and I grew up fishing around Washington State and were attracted to the simplicity of kayak fishing around five years ago. Months before this trip we found ourselves landlocked in the middle... Read more...


Good fix on a Warped Hatch
Tuesday, 30 December 2014
Anyone else have this problem? Northern California kayak angler Pychet Tep aka "Chet" found his hatch was warped, and the boat taking on water.  Here's his straightforward fix:   Kayak: 2009 Tarpon 140 Problem: It leaks... Read more...


Sneak Peek: Jackson Kraken
Wednesday, 16 July 2014
This kayak is designed for some of the most challenging paddling environments in the world and meant to be for the offshore and big lake kayak angler. This kayak marks the first collaborative design between legendary kayak... Read more...
Pursuing the Prehistoric E-mail
Written by Josh Dolin   
Sunday, 28 December 2014 14:13

1Jumping Gar In August of 2014 I embarked on the greatest journey of my fishing career to date; A week long solo expedition chasing one of North America’s largest freshwater predators, the Alligator Gar. I began dreaming up this trip as soon as I got into the sport of kayak fishing. It took a total of four years of continuous planning and research to make such a trip possible. I consider myself a relatively experienced multi-species trophy hunter in my home waters of Virginia. However, attempting to land a trophy class fish in a region I had never visited, let alone fished is a tall task for anyone. Especially when trying to do it from a kayak. Only recently did the trip materialize and go from a far-fetched dream to a reality. Naturally the anticipation was high.

The trip itself was a struggle as soon as I put my feet on Texas soil. Extreme heat and humidity, an intense lightning barrage, lack of bait and major camera and gear malfunctions were just a few of the problems that plagued me on my 47-mile float down the Trinity River. I had no choice but to adapt and overcome. After three days on the water and with a little aid from a friend of a friend, I managed to find the fish I had traveled 1300 miles to catch.

2Fullscreen capture 8232014 50722 AM 3Fullscreen capture 8232014 50808 AM 4-3  Foot Gar

The next to last day I landed my first Gator Gar. A decent fish, at 4-½ feet it was the longest fish of my career yet still a baby in Alligator Gar terms. I quickly followed that fish up with another wimpy fish at 3-½ feet. As the sun went down I had a new-found confidence in my quest though with one day left on the water I would have to pull all the pieces together if I wanted to make the long trip back home with my head held high.

The final day of my weeklong expedition did not disappoint. Loaded down with a cooler full of cut Buffalo (a cousin of the Common Carp) I started chucking baits. It wasn’t long before I buried the hook into a fiery Gator Gar that proceeded to take me to the woodshed. After hard fought battle with plenty of aerial displays I managed to subdue an absolutely beautiful 5-½-foot Alligator Gar out of the chocolate colored water.

After releasing the hefty 5-footer I commenced to soak baits in the exact same stretch of river. I noticed a lot of big fish activity in this particular stretch, and after 45 minutes of baking in the heat I had my final run of the trip. This run would result in the longest, most brutal test of attrition that any fish has ever dealt me.

5-5 Foot Gar 6-6 Foot Gar

I knew I had stuck a beast upon hook set with the immediate rebuttal on the other end of the line. But I had no clue what I had on until she surfaced yak-side. A snarling 6 foot, 100-pound beast that fought me for over an hour and on one occasion managed to get me on the brink of flipping in the murky water with one grand swipe of her massive tail. She dealt my drag a great deal of back talk but upon sunset of the final day, I had landed my White Whale.

It was a journey that forever changed me as an angler and an adventure that has left me hungry for more. Once you come face to face with prehistoric giant of that nature it’s hard to return back to home waters and be content with simply chasing a Largemouth Bass or Blue Catfish. This trip has kick started my love affair with big game freshwater kayak fishing and I have already begun to make plans for a trip back to Texas along with other potential opportunities to chase the largest freshwater fish the world has to offer, both in the U.S. and abroad.

7IMG 0397 8IMG 0403


Feel free to “like” my page on Facebook www.facebook.com/peelindragextremefishing. Also, my website www.fishhardorstayhome.com has additional entertaining and educational articles on my multispecies trophy fish quests. Thanks!

Fish Hard or Stay Home!

Josh Dolin “The Wolfman” Richmond, Virginia

Portugal Corviva E-mail
Written by Mario Correia   
Sunday, 02 November 2014 23:27

received m mid 1400186278563 c2c6ed0fe448fb1376 1 It was middle of May and historically, the big ones arrive in the river at this time. My bells started to ring and my biological alarm clock was fired up like crazy. It's time to go fishing for the trophy!

I started to call to my friends to arrange a fishing session. And there we went. The first day was a total bust, not one mark in the fishfinder even less in the rods! The second day was more promising. Fish started to appear in the finder, and soon we started to feel the fish hitting the lures. I was the first to get a real bite, and my reel was singing like crazy zzzzzzzzzzzzzz! But, after a big run of the fish opened his mouth and off he went. 1 to 0 for the fish. My friend was also fighting one and was luckier than me and won his battle.

One more strike for me and once again I heard the beautiful song of the reel in my hands, and once again the fish got away. I was starting to get frustrated. The marks in the fishfinder and also my faith of landing the big one that day were starting to disappear. But, after a good paddle I found the fish once again, it was the end of the tide, and my faith was ending with it.

IMG 3730421896201 DSC 0152 received m mid 1400186278563 c2c6ed0fe448fb1376 5

Finally I felt some thing trying the lure, but he seemed to have given up.

And BANG!  The rod pointed down to the water again but the reel didn't sing... And I felt the line go loose. 3 to 0, I thought the fish had won for the day. But no, I was happily wrong and when I started to reel the line, the fish ran like crazy and the philharmonic band of my reel was in full sound.

After a few minutes fighting my trophy gave up and surrendered to me.

It marks in the scale 28kg. Not the biggest one of the season, but the biggest one for me. Now we just have to wait for the next year to try and break my record.

Thanks to you all and I hope you've liked my story.


Now the materials used in the catch.

Rod- Barros light jigger 1.8 (Portuguese brand)

Reel- Tubertini Atlas 8000

Line-Suffix multi 832- 0,33mm

And the lure-Lunker City Shaker Black Ice 6" and 50g jig head


Preview YouTube video corviva 28kg 2014 Kayak Prime Fishingcorviva 28kg 2014 Kayak



Big Sur Weekend E-mail
Written by Travis Blymer   
Sunday, 10 August 2014 21:33

Big Sur Fishing, Drunk N’ Skunk Style


We were all aware of how unpredictable the rugged and isolated coast of Big Sur couldbe, and that there was no way of predicting the weather in advance. But, it didn’t matter, we were going. We were undeterred by the naysayers who gave us numerous and big sur 029 dire warnings of pounding shore break, strong winds, 25 foot great whites and rumors that the area was over fished. Our minds were set, and down Highway One we went.


Our group consisted of surfers, body-boarders and three kayak fishermen: Lunchbox, Juicy Johnson and me, Squid; collectively known as the Drunk N’ Skunks. My friend Juicy had zero days on a yak this season, so my wife wagered he would get too drunk the night before and stay on the beach. I took her bet. 


As we reached Limekiln, the camp-host assigned us the closest site to the beach. We were stoked, until we saw the site. That campground is more like a parking lot that had its parking spaces converted to campsites by adding picnic tables and fire rings. Where there was not enough room for one tent, we placed five. I decided to sleep on the beach.


 After shots of tequila, home brew, and a BBQ chicken dinner, I retired in hopes of a good night's rest. Unfortunately, the sounds of surf crept into my dreams and in between multiple emergency trips to the bathroom, I was tormented by visions of huge crashing surf. Sleeping on the beach between our kayaks, Lunchbox was also tormented by dreams of a 25-foot great white bumping his boat, trying to get a taste of what was inside the lunchbox. big sur 035


I awoke with the rising sun far from rested, but there was Lunchbox and Juicy checking the conditions. I knew then that I won the bet; Juicy was awake before me and fired up. I myself felt like crap, my belly was in knots, and was making trip after trip to the toilet. I wondered how many heckles I would get if Juicy made it out while I stayed in the bathroom all morning?


Struggling to pull myself together I watched Juicy launch, I was stoked for him, but so bummed on myself.  As Lunchbox and I prepared to launch, the surfers in our group came to see us off. They were probably hoping to see us capsize, but they were left disappointed, the launch was routine.


big sur 048 Paddling out of the cove I looked back on the coast. This view made it all worth it. I was struck by the beauty of the rugged canyons stretching down into the sea. This coast is so impressive. We paddled north and layers were shed. No need for spray-jackets, booties, or farmer johns on this day. We reached the edges of a large kelp bed and we could see large groups of jack smelt darting about below our boats. 


As we dropped and raised our gear, large olives were visible chasing our swim-baits. Suspended further down blues were waiting to attack, and at the bottom large browns, coppers, and vermilions were hungry. Working the surface, Lunchbox scored a nice greenling, and not long after he was the first to limit out on rockcod. Ole Juicy caught two “proper” Big Sur rockcod, at least six to seven pounds, a copper and vermilion. We kept pinching ourselves. The wind never came up! The weather was perfect, and to top it off, humpback whales were migrating just outside the kelp beds. 


big sur lunchbox When we decided it was time to return I got a big hit on my swim-bait. I set the hook and my rod doubled over and the fish took line. As I fought the fish to the surface my kayak drifted into some kelp, so I gave a few one-handed paddle strokes to get clear and returned to the fight. After a good struggle I got a glimpse and though it was a lingcod, then the large wing-like pectoral fins can into view. It was a cabezon! 


I reached back to grab my gaff, but instead of using it I just pulled the fish into the kayak. It may have been the biggest cab I have ever caught, about 24”. I went to secure my prize, and the fish gave one last fight for life. It must have looked like an old Disney cartoon when Donald Duck would go fishing. I tried to hug the fish and it’s tail slapped me in the face. I lost my grip and over the side it went. I sat quiet for a moment, and then let out a laugh. My buddies were smiling and shaking their heads at me. I should have used my gaff, but I didn’t really care. It had already been such a good day.


IMG 5487 As we returned to the Limekiln launch our friends came out in hope of a bloopers reel, but we exited the surf the same way we entered. Routine. That night Chef Juicy cooked up the greenling along with his larger copper and vermilion, tacos all around. What a success! I have a feeling we will be making this trip again in the future, but it is doubtful we will get weather as good as we did. And, if anyone asks? The shore pound was huge, the wind was super strong, a twenty-five footer bumped our boats and there were no fish. 


Travis works as the kayak fishing guide for Kayak Connection in Santa Cruz. For information about fishing with Travis, contact Kayak Connection in the US: (831) 479-1121; or email  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Take The Long Way Home E-mail
Written by Pete Julian   
Sunday, 02 November 2014 21:58

Take The Long Way Home

My brother Gus and I grew up fishing around Washington State and were attracted to the simplicity of kayak fishing around five years ago. Months before this trip we found ourselves landlocked in the middle of the state, attending college and feeling listless. Both having felt a calling to the outdoors from a young age we made the decision to drop out of college this year and put a spark back in our lives. With a new sense of freedom and wanting to make the most of it we departed on our greatest adventure yet: a 300 mile kayak trip down the west coast of Vancouver Island. Much more of an undertaking than any of our previous fishing trips, but it turned out to be just what we needed.

Our trip started at the head of Quatsino sound on the north end of the Island. We stuffed our Ocean Kayak Trident 13’s with enough gear to live unassisted for the first 140 miles. For food we brought rice, oatmeal, pasta, granola bars, trailmix and a few different spice rubs for cooking all the fish we hoped (and needed) to catch. We brought a good Coleman tent and two large tarps along with all the normal camping gear. We brought a thorough first aid kit and a vhf radio for checking the weather. Because of the weight of propane and with nowhere to restock, we brought none and cooked every meal over a wood fire. On July 8th we paddled out on a calm sunny morning headed west towards the open ocean.

west coast 1st half 011 west coast 1st half 038 west coast 1st half 056

It took us 3 days but when we reached the coast it was like a switch had been flipped. The water changed to a deep blue, the air tingled on my skin and the fishing turned from poor to fantastic. We enjoyed a few days of great fishing and great weather. We caught lingcod, many different species of rockfish, and my brother landed a chinook of about 20 pounds which fed us for two whole days. It was a luxurious start to the trip.

After enjoying the area for a bit we decided to continue south. But on the morning of our departure we only made it a few miles before thick fog rolled in and we decided to land and wait it out. I was anxious and wanted to keep moving but we soon learned to accept weather delays because the next day the wind picked up to 35 mph and blew relentlessly for four days. There was no chance of paddling in such strong wind so we just enjoyed the downtime as best we could. The weather delay made us realize it could take longer than we expected to reach the small town where we could restock our food, so we rationed hard.

The wind stopped one night and the next morning we got up early and paddled out just as it started to rain. The ocean was calm and we covered about 12 miles by noon. We set up camp, made a fire and dried our gear. The rain was still coming down that night but we were more than happy to have traded wind for rain. It felt great to be moving again.

west coast 1st half bear west coast 1st half choppy seas west coast 1st half cook

As we paddled out the next morning we immediately noticed the swell had gotten bigger. It grew as we went and in a couple hours we found ourselves getting seasick in the largest waves I’ve ever been in. The waves seemed as tall as houses. Bobbing along at the peak of a wave felt like overlooking a valley. At the first opportunity we headed back to shore to take shelter behind a nearby point but the swell slowed us down so much we moved at a crawl. I stared at the point and paddled trying to ignore the dizziness and nausea. Eventually we got there and found a protected cove behind the point. We dragged the boats up and collapsed in the sand, overjoyed to be back on shore. The day gave us a humbling taste of what mother ocean was capable of. It gave us perspective and confidence though, and the seasickness subsiding felt so good we were in high spirits. However we were more careful about picking our days to paddle in the future.

Rain continued as we moved south. Sometimes it poured and sometimes it misted but it never stopped for more than a couple hours at a time. The scenery was made even more beautiful in the rain. We spent a week in an area that has never been logged and has no roads or trails. The only access is by boat and very few people visit the area. Because of the harsh environment the trees grow slowly, like large bonsais, and cover every inch of the rocky coastline. Dead trees still stand all through the forest and give the whole place an eerie feel. One camp spot was a soft sandy beach that stretched for miles in each direction and wolf tracks covered the length of it. It was true wilderness without a doubt. As beautiful as it was we did not linger because the fishing was scarce and we were hoping to get better weather as we moved south.

west coast 1st half cove west coast 1st half cruising west coast 1st half fishing

On day 16 the rain had been coming down for 10 days and a few of those days were the hardest rain I’ve ever camped in. Everything was wet and we found ourselves up the mouth of a river looking for a place to camp. I was exhausted from not eating enough. We had not been catching many dinners lately and needed to ration hard because of all the bad weather slowing us down.

We set up camp on a small island in the river that seemed to be above high tide. As tired as I was our gear was wet and we needed a fire. I paddled my boat along the shore of the river and hiked through the forest looking for wood, but unlike the beaches there was almost nothing to burn. While Gus struggled to get a pile of wet twigs burning I scrounged up a boatful of wood, waterlogged from days of rain. It was a lot of work but finally we got a fire going and dried out our gear. The minute my sleeping bag was dry I got in the tent and fell asleep.

I woke up to the faint trickle of water and immediately knew what was happening. I unzipped the tent and saw our island covered in water from the rising tide. Quickly we packed up our gear and took down the tent just in time to avoid getting it wet. The entire island was soon submerged and our only option was to hang all our gear in the trees and then sit on a log and wait out the tide.

The next day I was thoroughly exhausted and we were hungry. We needed to get back to the ocean where fish and firewood were easier to find. My brother fished the river that day and caught a small steelhead but being a passionate steelhead angler he would have had to be on the brink of starvation to kill it. Instead we had delicious oatmeal and paddled back to the ocean that afternoon.

As we paddled out of the inlet we could see the sun ahead and steam rose from every hillside. Because of the heavy rain, waterfalls poured off cliffs into the water all along the shore. It was a beautiful sight. That evening we caught two nice rockfish and set up camp in the sun for the first time in a while. We cooked the fish with rice and taco seasoning and had a delicious Mexican feast. There was nothing more we could have asked for.

It felt amazing to wake up to the warmth of sun coming through our tent. We slept in, getting some much needed rest. I was so rejuvenated, it seemed like the sun had come just in time. From here the weather held and for weeks it was hot and dry. As we headed south it seemed like a vacation after the bad weather up north. We were protected from wind and swell by some offshore islands so the water was glass flat and the sun was hot. We paddled in swim trunks and fished as we went, catching enough rockfish to eat well. Every night we camped on a different beach and each one seemed more beautiful than the last.

One day as we paddled along we had our jigs trailing behind us and I watched as my brother’s rod god slammed! The rod shook and bent deep as he grabbed it and set the hook. Seconds later the fish rolled on the surface and showed the huge tail of a King, but then he was off. It was exciting- the first salmon we had hooked in weeks and we knew there would be more.

west coast 1st half trout west coast 1st half rockfish west coast 1st half wolf no dogs out here


Over the next week we caught some awesome King salmon and lost a lot more. They were hard to keep on between big jumps and a strange trick where they lazily roll side to side just below the kayak, making it nearly impossible to keep pressure on them.  It was some fun fishing and we took a number of days off to enjoy it. We ate some great salmon dinners and caught some really memorable fish. The largest of the trip was about 25 pounds, and my brother got him casting a fly along the edge of the kelp on his 10 weight. Later that day I got one almost as big while casting a buzz bomb from a rock island I had paddled my boat to. It certainly made up for any fishless days up north.

On day 26 we had gone 140 miles and made it to Tahsis, a small town where we had mailed ourselves a 35-pound box of food. We got ice cream cones and met some nice people, both of which were a great treat. The next day we picked up our food from the post office and headed back to the ocean ready for more.

With our boats full of food and a month of experience under our belts we cruised south with speed and confidence. We caught plenty of rockfish but the salmon were pretty elusive, so the second half of the trip became more about paddling and enjoying scenery.

We found many more beautiful beaches to camp on. One night we sat in hot springs and watched an awesome sunset in the fog. We also found a number of small islands to camp on without another person in sight. It was a joy and aside from a little bit of rain and fog the weather was still fantastic as we hopped from one great beach to the next.

Eventually we reached a point where the next section of coast seemed daunting. Our charts showed it to be a shear rock cliff for miles with nowhere to land. On top of that we were supposed to register and pay to camp there, so we decided it was a reasonable place to end the trip.


west coast 1st half releaseking west coast second half fogsun west coast second half river entry

In order to reach a good pick up spot we turned east and paddled up the longest inlet on the Island to Port Alberni. In the protected inshore waters we flew and covered 50 miles in 3 days, quite a difference from the unstable conditions of the coast. The next day my mom was nice enough to drive up from Seattle on her day off and pick us up. And so we ended our trip after 47 days and 300 miles of paddling.

During the drive home I looked back and couldn’t help but smile ear to ear.  Although I had started the trip dreaming of amazing fishing, overall the fishing was not that great. Every other aspect of the trip exceeded my expectations however. It was the challenges, the beautiful and inspiring moments, the freedom and the adventure that made it my best fishing trip ever. It gave me a new sense of confidence and got me more excited about life than I’ve ever been. I really felt like it had given me exactly what I was looking for.

Ready for Liftoff-Cape Canaveral Snapper E-mail
Saturday, 09 August 2014 21:00

Cape Canaveral Florida is known world wide as the launch pad for the US Space Program. Nicknamed "The Space Coast," everything from the Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle missions have launched from the Cape for the past half-century. Beneath the high-profile and high-tech reputation of Canaveral lies a rich history of fishing families and industry stretching back for generations.


Scheduled to attend the ICAST fishing trade show in Orlando this summer, I quickly researched nearby kayak angler guides in hopes of some fishing time while in Florida. Good things happen to good people.  I found a local charter skipper Alex Gorichky with Local Line Charters. Captain Alex is third generation Canaveral fisherman and has embraced kayak fishing along with his inshore skiff and offshore deep sea charters. As luck would have it, my timing coincided with one of the few "Snapper Weekends" in the area.  Red Snapper have are more than just excellent table fare.  These are extremely strong and somewhat grumpy reef fish, who are famous for "rocking" anglers. They immediately dive down to their hole in the reef after taking a bait. Gorichky sweetened the deal by inviting Mike Coneen, a fellow Ocean Kayak Pro Team angler for my on the job training.

sunrise coneencloud thrownet

 We launched before sunrise from Merrit Island, and cruised through the Banana River Locks into Port Canaveral. First order of business was finding bait.  It took a while but Captain Alex found a good patch of flipping Menhaden and displayed his cast net skills. One cast and our bait tank was full. We had a 20-mile cruise to the rock piles Gorichky had targeted for the day.  It was difficult to keep cruising, as we saw consistent fish sign on our way, mostly bonita crashing on Menhaden. We stopped on a rock pile about eight miles offshore, and 20 some miles from Port Canaveral. Captain Alex dropped a buoy to mark the rockpile, and we splashed our yaks.

bowrider gantry coneenON

Coneen provided an Old Town Predator 13 courtesy of Zachary Rece, a fellow Ocean Kayak/Johnson Products Pro. Coneen paddled his new Ocean Kayak Big Game II. Both are roomy, stable kayaks with raised seating. Except for the Florida heat, things were quite comfy. That is, until I got my first Snapper hit. These fish strike so hard if the angler isn't immediately 'on it' with a fully buttoned drag, the fish will break the line in the rocks below. Deckand Gerald advised me to "feed a little line" when I felt a nibble, so I was trying to feed, adjust drag and set the hook all at once. I should have known better.  

It took a few missed fish before Coneen gave me a personalized on-the-water seminar. "Keep the drag buttoned. Hold your rod tip higher, When the fish nibbles, lower the tip to provide line. Then REEL and pull with all your might!" OK.  That works. I caught and released a couple smaller Reds, while Coneen hooked up on a brute that towed him around for a while before succumbing. I did get to reel in a big boy myself just as we were ready to head back to barn. Like Coneen's sleigh ride fish, this one went out rather than down, and I was able to play the fish with a loosened drag, and really feel the power.  These fish are STRONG!

confishsmile bushsnapp

Florida is located in the very southeastern corner of the US. I've been to every other region in the country, but never to that corner until this summer. I would put it firmly on the list of contenders for "Fisherman's Paradise." The water is warm, with the huge Gulf Stream current only 30 miles offshore, holding tuna and bilfish. Ten miles offshore, where we were fishing, it's still quite shallow, 40-60 feet deep. Besides Snapper, big King Mackerel cruise this area and Cobia are common. Inshore, huge Tarpon, Kingfish and Cobia can be caught just off the beach, while the inland lagoons provide the opportunity for blistering actin with Redfish, Sea Trout and Snook, to name but a few.

As always, it pays to enlist the support of a guide.  Local knowledge not only ensures a better chance at catching fish, but also provides some depth to understanding a particular ecosystem. Captain Alex is a true Space Coast local and filled me in on the history, geology and ecological concerns of his home area.  Next trip, we'll hit the lagoons, I still haven't caught my first Redfish! 




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