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Hi y’all

I’m trying to get into some saltwater kayak fishing. I currently don't own a fishing kayak, so any tips on purchasing an ideal one would be a great help whether it should be used or new or paddle or peddle.  I am mainly going to be fishing in the Narragansett bay, and in rivers and estuaries. I have mainly been fishing from boat and land and this would be the first time I start up the hobby of fishing from kayak. The fish that I’m gonna be targeting will be striped bass, bluefish, fluke(summer flounder), tataug(blackfish), black sea bass, and scup(porgy). The types of fishing methods that I plan on using will be casting plugs and lures, chunking, trolling tube and worm and umbrella rigs, and bottom fishing. I mainly already have all the rods reels and tackle equipment, but extra tips on certain setups that would be ideal for kayak would be great help. I have a 2012 Ford Fusion sedan so transporting it would definitely needs some planning. Do you guys have any tips of a beginner set up that would work good for me. Mainly looking to spend relatively cheap but not too expensive, anywhere between $500-$1500. Also, what extra equipment would you recommend such as a fish-finder/depth finder, anchor, transporting equipment, and any other extra helpful accessories.

Thanks

 

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I would look for a used peddle kayak in your price range. They are definitely more expensive but having hands free while moving is a huge convenience. 
 

After finding a kayak, focus on safety equipment. A lot can go wrong real quick out there. Do some research and purchase all safety equipment before anything other extras.

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Sea James ... I have an inexpensive kayak I used as my "starter" yak if you are interested ... 13 foot Future Beach Angler 160. I fished it in Narragansett Bay; very stable, lots of room, a bit of a barge for a paddle kayak but great for a starter. Comes with an after-market seat, paddle, Scotty Rod Holder. Let me know if you are interested. I'm in Smithfield (although the yak is currently on the Cape).

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I fish it sometimes. I have an ocean kayak trident 11 footer. I bought it used. Check around Facebook market place. I don't go at night but I do have a flag whenever I'm out there unless it's a popular river (narrow). I throw it on top of my jetta. It's light enough where I just over head carry it from my car to the water. I have most of my stuff in the milk crate behind me and usually don't bring anything that doesn't fit. My dry bag holds my phone and keys. Get a kayak pfd too. I don't get out as much lately remodelling a kitchen with a baby and one on the way. I'm also in Smithfield. 

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Assume every boat doesn’t see you,  cold water will kill you, get a vhf radio and let someone know where your planning on going and when you plan to be back.  Don’t forget when the tide turns the current rips along with the wind in some spots so you might not be able to get back to your launch spot.  
 

Whatever kayak you get practice self rescue before you actually go out in the bay.

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Good points from @ne_dan. If you are near any inlets or rivers, be aware of the tide and wind patterns. Having to fight a strong wind and/or tidal current all the way back to your launch point can make for a very long and unpleasant trip.

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You have to be careful at the narrower parts of the bay leading out to the ocean.  The current can be much stronger than you think, depending on the tide. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Pedal kayaks like Hobie are all the rage. Yes...the concept of propulsion using only your feet and leaving your hands free for fishing...and being able to hold position in current or wind, is a big advantage. However, the disadvantages can be huge as well.

 

You will pay a great deal more for a similarly sized pedal kayak than you will a paddle unit.

 

The drive systems do break or wear out. One more thing to go wrong out there.

 

Probably the biggest issue for me, and maybe you too with your smaller car is weight. Start to look at what the Hobie boats weigh compared to paddle kayaks.  WAY over 100 pounds versus 45-70 pounds for a paddle kayak.

 

Hobie Revo 13.5'.....$2800 and 80 pounds rigged.

 

Hobie Outback....12.9'......$3000....103 pounds rigged

 

Other pedal kayaks even heavier

 

Given the top of your budget range....to me....that would preclude a pedal boat as a starter because you need to have some cash reserved for gear and accessories.

 

Given the weight factor and need to cartop it....to me it's a no brainier. Paddle.

 

Plus it's just way way easier to be able to carry a boat on your head to and from the launch and not have to mess around with cumbersome carts and trailers. 

 

One person mentioned the Ocean Kayak Trident 13. AWESOME boat. Handles exceptionally well. No issues at all being out front in one of these. The Prowler is also a nice boat from what I've seen.

 

Wilderness Systems makes the Tarpon as a 10', 12' and 14'.  The 2020 year is upgraded so the older models may represent savings. I believe they discontinued the 14'.  Great dependable well-handling boats.  The older WS Tarpon 120 (12 foot) is 65 pounds. Easy enough to lift and carry on my head and put on to cartop... and I am not young any more.

 

Eddyline boats are beautiful and very very lightweight.  A bit more care is required around rocks and rough ground than with the WS or OK "roto-molded" boats but they are so light and fast.

 

Buy used. Let someone else take the depreciation.  Get a boat two to five years old....say $750....and if you want to trade up next year...sell it for $750. Nothing lost.  If you buy it for $1150 and have to sell for $750...well...you get my point. Some guys are wealthy. It sounds like you and I are not.

 

Keep an eye on Craigslist. Don't be afraid to drive to CT, MA or Long Island for the right deal.  For example, three years ago, I got a leftover excellent condition WS Tarpon 120 for less than $600 in Narragansett including paddle and anchor.

 

$700-750 would be a healthy budget for a used excellent condition Tarpon 120 or OK Trident 13. If you are even thinking about going out front or bigger water inside the bay I would not go with anything smaller than 12 foot. 13 better.14 even better if you can carry it.  Ten foot is only for ponds and estuaries.

 

Don't bother with fish finders and batteries the first year. You're going to have enough to concentrate on just learning the ropes, navigating and fishing...leave that until later. Your wallet will thank you too.  Sometimes you see a fantastic deal where the boat is already outfitted with a FF...if so....great. but don't get distracted by the FF.

 

Gear:

OK...zero here about fishing gear... including various gear track systems, anchor trolley systems and rod holders. You will figure this out by and by and by watching how other guys rig up.

 

DO NOT GET A CRAPPY ALUMINUM PADDLE!  I know, you think "aluminum is light and they are cheap" ...yup...and they suck. After a while it will feel like a concrete paddle after a day of wind. Do yourself a huge favor. Set aside $175 for an AquaBound Stingray Carbon Fiber paddle, in the appropriate length for you and your boat of choice.  Bit more than aluminum...but trust me.... WAAAY better for your comfort, speed and muscle wear and tear.  Some carbon paddles can go way over $300...the AB two-piece Stingray carbon with the Posilok variable ferrule represents a really good value in a well-engineered and well-built paddle.  Ourdoorplay is a good website with good prices. Also Austin Canoe and Kayak.

 

Anchor.... don't mess around with an anchor the first year. A lot to learn and figure out with this. A lot to mess you up too in salt water.

 

GET A GOOD COMFORTABLE PFD. if it's not comfortable you won't wear it... especially when it's hot.  The CO2 inflatable units by Onyx are great, comfortable and affordable...under $100. And here, just buy new. Don't cheap out.  If you get an automatic/manual type...set it to manual ripcord. The automatic feature will go off unexpectedly with little bit of splash or spray.

 

Get some kind of orange safety flag and stick it on a piece of wood dowel or 3/4" PVC water pipe.  Attach to your crate or a rod holder.  You are a tiny spec in the bay...24 inches off the water...in moderate seas you wont even be visible much of the time if someone is looking right in your direction. A lot of big boats out there are fueled by Narragansett and Budweiser. Don't be a casualty of a drunk moron without a fighting chance.

 

Air horn. Cheap.  LOUD.  Keep it readily available.

 

Piece of good 3/8" line for all purposes.

 

Some kind of light... waterproof.  You will find yourself out later than you thought. Anything you can do to make yourself more visible...do it.

 

As soon as you can swing it, get a handheld waterproof VHF radio. Learn the channels and the protocol.  Keep on or in your PFD...not loosely stored in the boat where you can't find it after you capsize some day.  Go to BoatUSA and purchase a MMSI number. This number will be hard-encoded into the radio and the big red emergency button will broadcast a mayday automatically to coast guard with your location and vessel and your name. Valuable. The MMSI registration is not expensive and is a one-time cost.  You should be able to get a decent VHF in the $100-150 range. You cannot rely on a cell phone long term for life-safety situations

in a salt water environment. Also the radio will have weather band and that is very helpful out there especially as local storms and choppy seas can develop rather quickly....and a cell phone is not a good tool out there.  The VHF can be turned up LOUD so you won't miss anything too.

 

Whenever you go out, tell someone where you are headed. Even approximately.

 

Lightweight synthetic clothing... long sleeve shirts and a neck gaitor and hat with brim because the sun seems to get more brutal every year and skin cancer royally sucks.

 

Go with a buddy if you can manage it. Much much safer.

 

Wear a PFD

Also

Wear a PFD.

 

$700 boat, $200 paddle, $100 PFD, light, line, flag and air horn...$50. VHF $125.

 

$1175....just under your budget cap!  Save a few bucks on the boat if you need to...shop more carefully and be a good bargainer. But don't cheap out on the paddle or safety gear.

 

 

 

Edited by blackdogfish

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On 6/1/2020 at 7:30 PM, jeffreyrichard said:

Sea James ... I have an inexpensive kayak I used as my "starter" yak if you are interested ... 13 foot Future Beach Angler 160. I fished it in Narragansett Bay; very stable, lots of room, a bit of a barge for a paddle kayak but great for a starter. Comes with an after-market seat, paddle, Scotty Rod Holder. Let me know if you are interested. I'm in Smithfield (although the yak is currently on the Cape).

Hey bud. I’d this yak is still available and how much?

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Lot of brands making  peddle kayaks other then hobie these days. Most are within your price range with new comfortable seats. Perception pescatore. Lighting kayak strike,vibe shearwater 125, ocean kayak riot Malibu drive and the hobie compass. The compass is my next choice just because of weight. I think it comes in at a hull weight around 67 pounds. My outback is 87. I got to tell ya I am getting sick of lifting it over my head. The ocean kayak around 1000, the compass 2000, the others are around 1500 maybe less. The shearwater is the most innovative: it is completely adaptable to be what ever kind of kayak you want it to be. Watch some videos on these then make your choice.

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