William Powell Country

Look out there is a Kayak About!


Article written by 29 November 2012

Stop Press ! – Kayak fishing is taking the world by storm and even England is now enjoying a huge increase in it’s popularity.

This method gives the angler the independence and opportunity to fish places impossible to reach with conventional fishing methods. The Americans and Australians seem to be at the forefront of this obsessive way of fishing. Their large waterways, lakes and coast fishing are ideally suited to it.

Unlike a boat, a kayak can be launched in a matter of minutes from the top of a car in the most unlikely of bankside locations, in a matter of minutes. For the bank angler with little boat fishing experience, the new experience of sitting on top of the fish is electrifying. For the boat angler, the simplicity of the kayak can be refreshing, particularly with the new possibility to fish anywhere, any time.

Most, but not all kayak fishing is for predators, normally with lures. I guess the ability to rove around, continually changing location and never having to make the same cast twice is the appeal .

The kayak anglers has an identical approach to his quarry as the punt gunner. As the kayak glides silently through the water, it is possible to get very close to the fish. Indeed it is often possible to go looking for your fish, hunting and stalking it, before making the cast.

In contrast to river fishing, which, due to the lethargy of the Environment Agency, has steadily declined over the past forty years, kayak fishing is on the up. The first fishing kayak was seen at the CLA Game fair around five years ago. Now most Country Fairs have a stand or two dedicated to these small craft, with many kayaks to chose from.

England’s kayak anglers are a mix of salt and freshwater. The coastal anglers fish for bass in the summer and a breed of macho hardened guys are swapping gym time to paddle a mile or two off shore to target cod on a winter’s morning. The general public enthusiasm for wild, wet and tough outdoor experiences tallies  with fishing’s equivalent offering.

The traditional pastime of fishing for roach, dace and bream and now barble is a shadow of what it has been and anglers fishing for these fish have to some extent disappeared. Many fishing clubs are no longer interested in renewing leases with land owners ,for what was once desirable fishing. However, although the numbers of predators such as pike, perch, and zander  have also been reduced respectively, sufficient numbers remain, to give the mobile kayak anglers good sport with a pocket full of lures.

Kayak anglers are mostly a sociable breed and there are several, easy, no strings attached, free groups to join. Simon Everitt is a very experienced kayak angler running courses on responsible kayaking, which can be very dangerous, particularly off shore. For more information go to www.kayakuk.com

Suffolk based Light Line Salt Water Game offer innovative kayak fishing for Bass in Ireland. The company maintains an extraordinary catch rate, never having caught less than four bass to four pounds in any one day with clients, over the last five years. Excluding one hot day in 2010!

It also offer the most diverse of all fishing, scum frog popper kayak fishing for pike and chub on Norfolk and Suffolks rivers! If angling adventure is your bag, you need to check this out. You share a tandum kayak with your guide, sitting in pole position with the guide behind you. The overgrown river twists and turns and around every corner, you have a new target to cast to you believe you are going to catch with every cast!

The enchantment of the river is subline, six hours of stillness and peace. It’s crazy surface fishing with a little latex frog. The hooks are turned into the soft latex, making it possible to cast into the reeds and bushes and then make the frog hop on to the surface. Pike and big chub go wild for this critter. Takes are spectacular and 20 – 40 surface hits in a six hour trip are the norm. Don’t take my word for it, indulge and treat yourself to a very special day. Do it, it’s adventure fishing on your door step. Special Christmas and birthday present? For more details www.suffolkbass.co.uk.

With the river bank side anglers now often gone, the new breed maverick kayak anger is having a ball. The kayak angler has many public places from which he is entitled and welcome to launch his attack. Just as water is not restricted from flowing down the river, neither is the kayak angler.

Covering one or two miles in an hour, a cast or two here and there is the norm, no harm is done and frankly nobody seems to care.

With growing numbers of these mobile anglers, I see it as a matter of time before they start to show interest in our salmon rivers . This breed of angler is not interested in the kill to eat, but the adventure, often with a photo as a trophy. After all, we see the man who achieves a Mcnab as an adventurer not a poacher, don’t we!


Max Bond

A fishing enthusiast, who has made a living with Framlingham Fisheries selling and working with coarse fish. Run Carp Fishers Abroad (25 years) for enthusiasts keen to catch giant carp and cat fish in France. Now 50, he is looking for .. Read more.

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