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Ask Frank Daignault Frank Daignault is recognized as an authority on surf fishing for striped bass. He is the author of six books and hundreds of magazine articles. Frank is a member of the Outdoor Writers of America and lectures throughout the Northeast.

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  #1  
Old 07-27-2017, 12:48 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Kayaks in SW Fishing??

Reflect upon the use of "yaks" in your SW fishing. Even if you don't have one, like Mister Smarty, you are welcome in this sophisticated discussion to bemoan or praise their use. Hint: if I were 50, I would get a yak
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Old 07-27-2017, 01:40 PM
Rmarsh Rmarsh is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I started out kayak fishing from a wooden kayak that I built from plans. It was very stable and could handle moderate surf. I took it out fishing in the ocean and could not believe what I was missing being shore bound.
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Old 07-27-2017, 04:51 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

This is our daughter, Susan, CG Captain (retired), in her Maine yak. Note the ever present PFD whenever in a yak.http://www.stripersurf.com/forums/at...1&d=1501185034
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Old 07-28-2017, 07:43 AM
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I never ventured out in the surf area with my kayak but, in the bays, great tool, and enjoyable. Barnegat bay in Jersey is a kayak/fishing paradise. Hope to try the Cape Cod area one day.
The amount of "stuff" you can carry on a sit on top is like taking your buggy out with you. I, like your daughter, always wear a life vest, safety first.
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Old 07-28-2017, 08:26 AM
brucelieb brucelieb is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

got one... old and the rudder is not working but it is fun... never got a fish.. so far the goal is to have it not fall out of the truck and not lose my equipment.
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Old 07-28-2017, 09:03 AM
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

x3 on the life vest.

I still have an Ocean Kayak Malibu 2 sit on top. Just haven't used it in years due to time.

With Kayaks a few things:

1. Great tool for access to the back bays. Monmouth county has a lot of great water in the Shrewsbury River system, that is basically inaccessible, except by boat. The kayak allows you to launch in very small spots, as noted.

2. Always Plan - I never ventured out in the ocean fishing except technically one time when the current swept me around the end of Sandy Hook, intentionally, sort of. A little poor planning on needing to get back to my launch point by a certain time, with both wind and tide working against me. Lesson learned that one always plans a trip around wind and current, if possible (conditions can change unexpectedly).

3. Keep it simple - as Joe said, you can load up a kayak with a lot of, er, crap. Keep it simple, plan out what you're doing and only bring what you need

4. Keep it tied down - have a way to secure everything, especially the paddle, but also the rod and other things. Assume you'll dump in the water and ask yourself, what would happen? Because things happen, yeah I did it and thankfully most everything (except a hat) was tied down so no harm no foul

5. Dress for the water, not the air - a corollary to #4. If the air is in the 70s, but the water is in the 50s, guess what? if you don't dress properly or have a good plan to get dry if you dump, you could be in a little trouble if you dump, and conditions change and you can't get dry quickly enough. edit: experienced cold weather paddlers wear a dry suit. But for many conditions a wet suit will work, or even waders with a good wading belt covered by a dry top, and of course the PFD, will save your bacon if you dump. A dry top is a good idea at a minimum in any event.

ok, enough rambling, but those are some thoughts.
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Last edited by RobS : 08-11-2017 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 07-28-2017, 10:53 AM
Rmarsh Rmarsh is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

Those are all excellent points Rob....
Good advice for sure.
On a lighter note ....there was this one time that a bag with a half dozen eels got loose inside my kayak while out on the ocean.....luckily I got one of the buggers, while the others scattered around in the cockpit.
Casting or trolling an eel has caught me a few nice fish..i have a larger boat now but I miss fishing from the yak.
Stealth and being aware of everything ....using all your senses..you are one with your surroundings..its great.
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Old 07-28-2017, 11:02 AM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

Couple of things come to mind: PFD, don't lose that paddle, stay away from open sea, only using the yak in estuaries. News media runs a lot of stories of open sea rescues of yaks. I would also only use one of those molded jobs with built in floatation; I think around $500.
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Old 07-28-2017, 11:10 AM
LKB3rd LKB3rd is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I have been fishing from one of the Hobie kayaks with the pedal drive system for 10+ years and it works great. I use it in Long Island Sound where under normal conditions we have little to no surf, so I can launch it off any beach. I can bump right up against rocks if I want, have a pretty reasonable range, I get good exercise. Great for trolling, although I don't do a lot of that. Doesn't spook fish much even when I am right on them. One time I got surrounded by a school of bunker, and where I turned they turned. They would have built a statue of me to bring offerings to if they were able :P

I keep it simple like recommended above. I basically equip myself like I was going surfcasting on the beach with a surf bag behind the seat, pliers and a small selection of often used plugs in the storage in between my legs or in the side rails, one rod. Anything that I would be sad to lose or in trouble if I lost (paddle)is fastened to lanyards. Strobes and lights of all kinds for safety at night. I always wear my bright red PFD. I have my phone in a waterproof holder around my neck. When it's too cold to swim I wear neoprene bib/pants with a dry top, and neoprene booties.
It's a great way to fish in my opinion.
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Old 07-28-2017, 12:01 PM
brucelieb brucelieb is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

do you bring a net? Landing a big fish seems ify??
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Old 07-28-2017, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

you have to ask folks that land big fish

for me, a cheap orange lip gripper worked well.

for blues, I never really wanted to land them anyways (sorry, Frank, no blue fillets for me )
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Old 07-28-2017, 01:28 PM
LKB3rd LKB3rd is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I use a lip gripper, but it can be a little bit iffy. I bought a hook resistant glove this year because I felt like it was a matter of time til I got hooked somehow. It's actually not the big fish that are a problem, they are usually pretty spent by the time you land them. It's the small and medium ones that you can horse right in and are full of energy, going nuts.
A net is probably a good idea...
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Old 07-28-2017, 04:56 PM
John_P John_P is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I have a few kayaks. A couple 2 person and a couple 1 person. Malibu 2. They are a lot of fun but are a pain to lug around and you really have to watch wind and tide. Nothing is worst than paddling back against a strong wind. I've used them in bay and ocean and I've even used them to surf waves. I've used them at night too. Experiemted with anchoring.

One night in a swell I was slaying the fish about a qtr mile out and put the anchor out. Swell hit boat and knocked me out. Now I was drifting away from kayak. Managed not to panic and got myself back.

I've Fly fished off of it but it's kind of awkward fighting a fish with Fly rod.

Really fun with a light spinning Rod chasing surface feeding fish like Albies, bass. You can approach them without spooking them. With a boat you always are more prone to putting them down.

Very good for fishing rivers, sand bars and mud banks. Did a lot of stalking at dawn or dusk and then pulling yak up to wade fish.
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Old 07-28-2017, 09:33 PM
SALMONMEISTER SALMONMEISTER is online now
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

The only time I take my PFD off is on hot days in calm water a few feet from shore. I have 2 SOTs (sit on tops). I occassionally roll them over and practice getting back in. In a SOT kayak it only takes a few seconds...and it's self bailing. Definitely check winds and tide. Last weekend while visiting our daughter I paddled about 1.25 miles one way into 15knot wind and a new moon tide. Luckily the tide wasn't in full swing yet and I slowly made it through a bridge area (narrow, faster current). It took me almost 25 minutes to go from a marina in Point Lookout and halfway up Jones Inlet (NY). It took me less than 10 minutes to get back with everything pushing me. I purposely planned every minute of that paddle. I wasn't fishing that day but purposely rode a few small waves into a shallow area...some nice rides but I also got "Maytagged" or "window shaded" a few times (whitewater kayaker' jargon for getting rolled over). I've done this before with rods but always had them tied in.
Another thing to really watch is bottom fishing while drifting in current with heavy line. If you hang up you may flip trying to break the line...have a knife REALLY close!
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Old 07-29-2017, 08:01 AM
John_P John_P is offline
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Default Re: Kayaks in SW Fishing??

I have sit on top. We do have one other kind. It's one that you are more prone to see shooting rapids where you sit inside. It's fast and easier to paddle but not as stable. The Ocean kayak brand (malibu 2 and frenzy) are wide and very stable. I don't have the kind here you can paddle with your feet, just with your hands. I don't have any electronics on them either.

the techniques for surf fishing are very much applicable to kayak fishing. I have my belt with pliers attached via phone cord. I bring my surf bag and it has everything I need.i have a couple small dive lights I wear around my neck.

When fishing I sit and hang my feet over the side. I often wear either a bathing suit or a wetsuit with a top if it's cold. So falling in the water is never a big deal.

As said I've even taking the yak and then jumped out to fish on a sand bar or a rock.

I especially like how I can fish tight to a beach on over a flat where I really couldn't take a boat but there was no beach access.

It's become quite a thing by me. They go out in groups, they have tournaments.
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