My latest essay, a guide to tournament kayak fishing, is included in the Fall 2016 issue of KBF Magazine. The article begins on page 73…..Thank you for reading!
Battling an angry, powerful fish from a kayak can be a nerve-rattling experience. Anglers must first contend with the thrill of the fight and the steps required to land the fish. Those steps include adjusting the drag setting on the reel, preventing the fish from running into and being wrapped on underwater structure, and any number of other movements (such as holding the rod in one hand while using a landing net with the other). In some cases, a large fish can haul a kayak into dangerous water.
Small, less bruising fishes such as Bluegill, Crappie or White Bass may not prove a great test of strength or kayak management but the motions required to land the fish remain the same. My topic here is how larger sport fishes – Alligator Gar, Muskellunge, Steelhead, giant Largemouth Bass or Bowfin – amplify the mechanics of landing a big, angry fish by requiring added strength as well as attention to detail. And all these movements are amplified, sometimes to deafening volume, by a tangible risk of physical harm to the angler and the fish.
What will happen when I pull this large fish into the kayak, and its powerful jaws, teeth or tail are in my lap?
Here is my latest article, courtesy of Pacific Standard magazine, on the state of my favorite sport.
Here is the link to my latest article, courtesy of Kayak Bass Fishing magazine. Download the pdf file (it’s free!), and the article is listed in the contents index.
The latest issue of KBF magazine mentions the Bowfin in two separate articles and quotes yours truly in one of them. The one in which I am quoted is a feature story by angler Drew Haerer on the topic of fishing for primitive fishes. The article “The Forgotten” (p. 96-99) also features a photo I took of a friend and fellow angler while we fished for Bowfin at Core Creek, N.C., in 2012. You can read it free here:
In mid-March, the White Bass make a spawning run, and the Bowfin are generally mixed in with the schools. We launch to look for Bowfin but the White Bass are so aggressive they usually grab the lures before they reach the Bowfin.
I put a Camera mount on my Tarpon 120 and shot some footage as we locked into a school of White Bass in the lower Eno River last week. We landed about 40 small males before we moved on…..
Kayak Fishing offers the advantage of stealth to the angler in the boat. A kayak can navigate water that a bass boat or even a john boat cannot enter without running aground or scaring fish – assuming the angler is quiet and controls the vessel. To fully enjoy a kayak as a fishing platform, an angler must be willing to explore, learn new techniques, have strong paddling skills and take safety precautions. For these reasons and others, kayak fishing has been my preferred style of fishing since 2011.
I was first introduced to the sport by an officer of the UNC Fishing Club who worked at a large kayak dealership in Greensboro, N.C. in 2008. I began to practice, seek out new waters and later, fish in tournaments (primarily for Largemouth Bass). Over the years, I’ve compiled a strong record in competition. Here are a few highlights:
I. Tournament Kayak Fishing Record