By Tim Huffman
We have to run full speed up and down the lake, making sure we have the latest and best electronics with current updates and map chips, a minimum of sets of poles and boxes full of baits. The more loaded our boat the more breakdown and maintenance is required. Sometimes we need to back off and just fish for fun. Kayaks give us that opportunity at a very economical price.
“I do a lot of kayak fishing,” says Arkansas guide and outdoor communicator, Brad Wiegmann. “There are so many advantages with the biggest one being access to more waters. You can put a kayak in almost anywhere and get to water; much of it not fished often. You can get in very shallow water where fishermen in pontoons or bass boats can’t get to. Your fishing opportunities increase if you use a kayak.”
Wiegmann says another kayak advantage is the affordability. There isn’t an outboard motor to buy or to put gas and oil into. The best ones made for fishing allows you to stand up without tipping over. The new kayaks are very advanced from the basic models a decade ago.
Wiegmann says prices vary on how you want one rigged and the length. You can get a recreational model but the ones made for fishing are more stable and provide needed features. If you want the top of the line fishing machine the Hobie brand offers a fishing kayak that you peddle with your feet leaving your hand free for fishing. NuCanoe has a frontier model that’s unique and has a wide beam. You can go as simple as you want or fully-rigged.
Wiegmann says, “Storage is important to keep things in the boat and not in the water. Also, I don’t want poles sticking out or up in the especially when fishing in tight areas. I often carry several poles so I want to be able to keep them out of the way.
“One difference is that you are exposed to the elements in a kayak. That’s great in the summer when you can let you legs dangle over the side in the water. In cold water you need to dress properly.”