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Kayak Fishing Safety – Tips To Keep You Safe On The Water


Article Categories: Fishing | Fishing Tips
Article Tags: Fishing | Fishing Gear | Kayaks

Fishing from kayaks is a great option for many anglers. Instead of fishing from powerboats, sailboats, or canoes, many anglers consider fishing kayaks a better alternative to other vessels. Kayaks can potentially be dangerous, so here we have some important kayak fishing safety tips for you.

While doing research for this article, we found several resources that helped us. With our own experience kayak fishing, online research, and consulting friends and guides, we came up with some safety tips.


Wear & Bring The Proper Gear & Clothing

Wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) all times on the water. In addition to a lifejacket, you need to have the proper warmth clothing on. You need to be prepared to be submerged, in case something happens. In winter, or cold water, going overboard could mean death, and having gear that enables you to last just a bit longer can save your life.

Colorful gear may save your life in a rescue situation. If you can be spotted easier, you may aid rescuers.

Bringing a GPS beacon, and a device to contact emergency services or other boats may save your life. It is always suggested to invest in beacons and communications tools to keep you safe.


Practice Self Rescue

Practice self-rescue exercises to recover in case you capsize or fall out of your kayak. You need to know how to get back in safely and fast. You should practice this in safe conditions so that in a real emergency, you have some preparation and practice.


Check Weather Before You Get Out On The Water

It would be foolish to go out on the water without checking the forecast before you go. Know the wind directions, know current patterns, know high tide and low tide information, know temperatures, know the chances of storms coming in. Going into a trip without this information can get you in major trouble.

In addition, you should complete research about the water you are fishing on. Read online articles and blogs that answer questions. Reach out to professional kayakers’ social media groups, and local guide shops to help get information on a body of water.


Know The Rules & Regulations Of The Water

Will there be other boats? This brings in another element of danger to be aware of. It is also always important to know the regulations in that area, both kayaking and fishing.


Always Have Proper Safety Gear

This may sound crazy, but you should carry a shelter option. This is especially the case if you are taking a longer trip to reach your destination. If injury occurs, a storm that prevents you from moving, or some other unforeseen event, you’ll want to be able to find land and make camp.

In addition, fishing involves hooks, sometimes sharp fish, and other objects that may hurt you. Kayaking on the ocean near rocks, in a river, or another area could also lead to injuries from impact or capsizing. Be sure to carry first aid materials in case of injury.


Tell Someone Your Plan

Never go out on the water without telling someone where you’ll be going, your plan, and when to expect you back. That way, if you don’t phone in or show up when you should, someone can start the process to try and find you. This will also ensure you have prepped at least a rough itinerary for yourself.


Bring Proper Nutrition & Water

Kayaking can be a vigorous workout. Especially in windy situations or heavy currents. You need to have fuel to have your body at maximal performance. Ensuring you have enough calories, carbs and hydration for activity will keep you more safe on the water. Don’t forget this.


Get A Stable & Durable Fishing Kayak

Before going into the depth of other suggestions and tricks you need to adopt while having fishing kayaking, we must know how important it is to select an accurate, durable, and trustworthy kayak for your angling ventures. Let’s look over which kayak is more suitable for handling the fishing gear and rods throughout fishing.

Usually, kayaks vary in lengths from 10 to 16 feet. The fishing kayaks that are longer could perform better in whitewater casting. Because the long and narrow kayaks from its haul could move fastly and compete very well with the water opposition. Shorter kayaks having often have a less defined bow and blade so may be more suitable for ponds or lakeside fishing trips. The shorter kayaks are more maneuverable and less stable, while the longer kayaks are less maneuverable and more stable. The same pattern goes for width. Wider kayaks are more stable, but less maneuverable. Check out our guide to choosing fishing kayaks.

Choosing a longer kayak, with a wider base is often the best approach to reduce chances of rolling over, and therefore keeping you safer. A kayak fitted with stabilizing bars might be a great option as well.


Consider A Professional Guide

If you are new to kayaking, or even just knew to where you will be kayaking, consider grabbing a kayaking guide, or at least consulting one. They can often ensure you don’t make mistake, get you on fish, or inform you of potential dangers or regulations you may have been unaware of.

By considering the above mentioned safety tips when kayak fishing, you are ready to get into the safe fishing experience.

Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais is the founder of hikingandfishing.com. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor adventure, travel, and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, backcountry skier, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. Max grew up hiking all around New Hampshire and New England. He became obsessed with the New Hampshire mountains, and the NH 48, where he guided hikes and trail runs in the White Mountains. Since moving out west, Max has continued climbed all of the Colorado 14ers, is always testing gear, learning skills, gaining experience, and building his endurance for outdoor sports. You can read more about his experience here: hikingandfishing/about