Ten years ago, options for fishing kayaks were very limited. As the years have past, over the last decade, the choices and selection of different angling specific kayaks has broadened dramatically. Some boat manufacturers are producing more varieties of fishing kayaks then ever before. Some even more then they are white water, touring or recreation-oriented kayaks. With an average price range of between 800-4000 Canadian dollars, there’s lots of room for variations, styling and features, with almost every type and genre of fishing being accommodated in some form or another
A friend and I snuck in one last Jackson and Hobie Adventure
I noticed it throughout Alberta, at different events and gatherings within the kayak angling community that Wilderness Systems, Jackson Kayaks, Old Town and Hobie (in no particular order) would be the four most popular brands within the province. With honorable mentions to Perception, Pelican, Ascend and Nu Canoe brand kayaks.
They all float, they are all fishable, the majority you can stand comfortably in. Many of them also offer pedal drive models with both higher and lower price points. Why one over the other? Well that’s a lot of personal preference. For me, its finding that sweet spot where fishability, on water performance, and cost meet. You will have to find your own happy place when it come to your boat.
One other thing I’ve noticed is that people who own certain brands of boats tend to outfit their boats with the same branded accessories or gear when available. (pro staff and reps excluded). I wonder sometimes what the reasoning behind this is? Just because that awesome boat you have meets your criteria of what an awesome boat is, you shouldn’t count out other companies’ accessories. I’ve never seen any Hobie Crates on Old Town boats, or Jackson crates on Wilderness boats. Maybe its a pet peeve of mine, maybe folks just don’t care, and that’s totally ok, I’m still trying to wrap my head around it. Ive definitely been guilty of this myself in the past when both on and off a kayak fishing team.
Choose your weapon
I guess what the gist if it is that I’m trying to get across is don’t pigeonhole yourself to one brand, there’s lots of great kayaks and accessories on the market today. Find the ones that work the best for you regardless of brands. Companies like Wilderness Systems makes great accessories that will work for most brands, as does Jackson, and others. Don’t be afraid to step away from brand that you may not be use too. It may open up a whole new type of fishing experience.