4 Mistakes To Avoid When Kayak Fishing

In the game of life, no matter who you are or what you're capable of, you're going to have to start from the bottom.

You'll start, make a few mistakes here and there (or a lot, I'm not here to judge), and hopefully, learn from those mistakes so that you could be on top dog in your yard.

Mistakes are a part of life, they are how we learn.

Even if the truth stings, think about it.

Do you think the pro fishing tournament winners got to where they are by never making mistakes?


They made a lot of mistakes, over and over and over again until they learned exactly what to do and what not to do.

And instead of throwing you out to the watery wolves, I've decided to compile a list of mistakes a lot of beginner fishermen make! A smart man learns from his mistakes, but the wise one learns from others so he never has to…

1. Weather Is Always Something to consider

It's the day, the day where you have all of your gear packed up and ready to go.

You have your best fishing kayak, bait, your rods, safety equipment, snacks, etc…

You've arrived, and now the excitement of getting in the water is overtaking you. You get in the water, begin to paddle off in search of the fish you're after.

But uh oh, the sun's not out and those clouds are looking a bit too ominous for your liking…

The wind is blowing something serious, and now it is starting to drizzle…

Forget the drizzle, it's absolutely pouring down like you pissed off the weather itself.

Situations like this are a lot more common than you'd assume, simply because a lot of beginner fisherman neglect to account for the weather as well.

You can't get to your sweet spot and fish in peace when the sky above you is letting off some steam. Especially not in a kayak!

So don't be that guy who prepares for everything except one of the most important factors: the weather.

2. Too Much Prep Can Be Bad

I know how it is, believe me I do. Nobody wants to be the unprepared newbie on the water.

Before you finally get out there on the water, you want to make sure that you have absolutely everything.

You want enough bait, you want enough line for your rods, hell you might want to bring an extra rod or two, y’know, just in case.

It's always better to have it and not need it instead of needing it and not having it, right?


Usually… but not in this case.

You see, loading all of your gear up and strapping it onto the kayak sounds like a good idea in theory, but you have to keep in mind that you're adding a bunch of weight to your kayak.

Your kayak, the watercraft that's not built to support and carry a lot of extra baggage.

The last thing that you want to do is bog down your kayak and up your chances of capsizing in the water, because not only are you soaked, in the water, and probably in a state of panic, you're also going to be ten types of pissed off when you realize that all of your fancy gear is lost to the waters.

Pack lightly, yet efficiently.

3. Don't Make It Harder Than It Needs To Be

While we're on the topic of preparing and rigging your kayak for your trip, there is also another factor to take into consideration.

Yes, you've learned about packing lightly.

You have all of your tools and kits within reach.

Your rods are on the sides.

Snacks, beverages? They're all there and accounted for. With the way all of this is sounding, what could possibly be wrong?

The layout itself. It's a pretty common rookie mistake to pack without a good look at the organization of how everything is situated on the kayak.

It's easy to overlook because maybe you've been used to boats. They're big enough to the point that putting the cooler next to the haphazardly motor won't slow anything down.

But kayaking is a different beast. These are, for the most part, solitary, one person kind of jobs. Kayaks are smaller than boats, so you need to make sure that you're accounting for the reduced space.

Is everything in reach?

Does anything impede your movement due to its placement?

Questions like these are the ones to keep in mind when setting up your kayak because nothing is more frustrating than getting out on the water, stumbling and knocking around your gear that you set up yourself.

Don't be your own enemy.

4. When It Rains, It Pours… Are You Prepared For It?

Do you know what a lot of things in society have in common?

Public places, people, groups, the military, the government…

We live in a society where we are used to things going according to plan. Everything runs like it's intended, everybody is happy and its smooth sailing for us all.

Up until something terrible happens.

That's where contingency plans come into play!

Fire in the building?

There are exit routes and emergency exits.

Somebody's choking at the restaurant on a delicious cheddar biscuit?

The paramedics are on their way with procedures on how to deal with the situation.

You're on a fishing trip in your kayak and another boat comes by kicking up big enough waves to throw you off and capsize you?

Well, what do you do in a worst case scenario like this?

If you make sure that:

  • Your gear is in waterproof boxes and secured to your kayak
  • Your flotation devices are on you and working
  • Your rods are in their rod leashes

You'd definitely have a better chance of not flipping the eff out after seeing all of your expensive gear float to the bottom of the water. Yeah, you fell out if the boat and are soaking wet, but at least you don't have to spend money on recuperating from the loss of your gear.

Well, those are some common mistakes we see rookies making when it comes to kayak fishing. Learn from these and avoid these mistakes, and you'll be enjoying your kayak fishing trip to the fullest!