Inflatable kayaks are no longer mere pool toys. Nowadays they're the watercraft of choice for just about everyone, from families looking for some outdoor fun to outdoorsmen ready for some whitewater action, and everyone in between. This includes hobbyists and skilled anglers looking for a great fishing experience.
For anglers, picking the perfect watercraft is crucial. If you're thinking about buying an inflatable kayak for fishing, here are some things you need to know:
A Great Choice
If you require portability and convenience, then an inflatable fishing kayak is definitely a great choice. When deflated these kayaks can fit neatly into the back of your car, so there's no need for a cumbersome and expensive roof rack. They can even be carried around on mass transit, and stored in a closet when not in use.
Inflatable kayaks today are no longer built the way they were several years ago. With new materials and sturdier designs they can now easily withstand most outdoor elements; but in the unlikely event that they do get punctured they can also be easily repaired using included maintenance kits.
Because it's lightweight, you can bring the inflatable kayak with you practically anywhere, anytime. If you're tight on space and want a kayak you can carry around with you anywhere, the inflatable kayak is your best bet.
Types of Inflatable Kayak
That being said, you'll still need to decide which kind of inflatable kayak to use. There are several kinds available today, and the right choice depends on your particular needs and preferences.
Traditional kayaks are what are known as sit-in kayaks. They have the traditional enclosed cockpit, which is great for keeping water out during inclement or cold weather. Sit-on-top kayaks have a more open design and a higher seat, which is great for those who have difficulty getting in or out of an enclosed shell, or feel claustrophobic. Because their seats are slightly higher, sit-on-tops can give you a better range of motion when fishing, however sit-in models have more room for gear and cargo and can be attached with a spray skirt for added protection against cold wind and water. If you'd like the best of both worlds you can always opt for open-style kayaks, which are more like canoes with their higher side walls and an open design that makes for easier entry.
Kayaks can also be solo or tandem. Solo kayaks, as you would expect are good for only one person while tandem kayaks are good for two. There are also convertible kayaks which can seat two or three people but can be converted for solo use. If you're looking to go fishing with a friend (furry or otherwise) a tandem or convertible model would suit you best. If you carry plenty of gear you could also find a tandem or convertible model useful as it gives you extra space for your gear.
Size and Weight
When it comes to size and weight, there are plenty of things you will need to consider:
- Where will you be fishing? Shorter kayaks tend to be better for whitewater and rivers, while longer ones fare better in lakes and oceans.
- How tall are you? If you're tall or have long legs then you'll need a longer kayak no matter where you'll be fishing.
- Manoeuvrability. Shorter kayaks are quicker to respond, whereas longer, slimmer ones tend to be faster. The key is finding the right balance—a kayak that can move when you want it to move and stay still when you want it to stay still.
- Stability. You'll want a more stable kayak if you tend to lean over the side or stand on the kayak when fishing. Generally, the wider the kayak the more stable it is, although several models are already built with very rigid floors that provide plenty of stability.
- Will you be taking your kayak on a plane? If you are, then the lighter the better. If you often fish solo it would also be wise to go light.
- Will you need a lot of space for gear and cargo? You need to make sure that the kayak you choose not only has the space for all your gear but can also easily carry the weight of you plus your cargo.
One of the most important things that can be forgotten when getting an inflatable fishing kayak is comfort. You'll be in the water for long periods of time and so it is crucial that you are comfortable in your craft. This means ample leg room, a comfortable seat and back support in the form of a tall seat back, should you need it. These, as well as previous points mentioned, make it a wise decision to spend more on a kayak that has all your needs and preferences covered.
If you need more help deciding which inflatable kayak to choose for your next fishing trip, don't hesitate to call us on 02 9745 5555. Apart from a great range of inflatable kayaks we also offer many other kayak accessories to give you the best kayak fishing experience.