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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

8 Reasons Why Fishing from a Kayak Beats a Motor Boat Any Day

Florida charters explain why they prefer fishing from an agile kayak rather than a bulky motor boat

At first glance, you may not think a narrow, low-riding kayak is the best thing for fishing. In many cases, this is true – a larger motor boat is what you’ll need to reach fishing spots a long way from the docks.

However, there are many wonderful fishing spots that are not far from good launch points. Florida’s inshore waters are known for its miles upon miles of seagrass beds, mangrove-lined shores and other shallow water spots that are home to a plethora of popular gamefish.

If you’re fishing waters within Tampa Bay and other nearshore areas of Florida, a kayak is preferable over a larger motor boat for several reasons. Continue reading for 8 reasons why many Florida fishing charters prefer kayaks over motor boats.

1. They allow you to go where motor boats can’t

As we alluded to in the intro, kayaks have almost zero draft, allowing you to reach backwater areas much easier. Many of these spots are inaccessible by powerboats, so if you can get there, you virtually have the place all to yourself. This can be especially beneficial during Florida winters when many fish migrate into back canals, creeks and rivers that feed into the bay.

2. Kayaks are quieter

Kayaks also have a level of stealth that larger motor boats do not have. Therefore, they are not as noticeable to fish below. If you’re in shallow water, the slightest ripples caused a large boat can cause fish to think twice. Kayaks on the other hand glide through the water. You can also put rubber down in spots where you set your paddle to make yourself even quieter.

3.  Kayaks allow for better casting

In a motorboat, you have to stay off the shoreline in deeper water and cast in. With a kayak though, you can get close into the shore and cast along the grass or mangrove beds that are so common in Florida. This will give your bait much more time in what’s called the “red zone,” or the spots you’ll likely find fish. Also, you can cast out into deeper water and bring your bait back as the water gets shallower, which actually follows an instinctual pattern of many fish species.

4.  Fish seem more exciting to catch

Since the kayak is so nimble and light, a 10 pound Redfish for example can take you for a little bit of a ride and even circle under your kayak. This adrenaline pumping “man vs. nature” activity is what makes fishing so exciting. If you’re in a larger motor boat on the other hand, you will be able to retrieve the fish without this hassle, but without the excitement.

5.  You can get into other things if the fish aren’t biting

Despite the best efforts of Florida fishing charters, sometimes the fish are just not biting. If you’re in a kayak, you’re in luck though since you can still explore the surrounding area and even get into out of the way spots. If you’re in a motor boat, the only thing you can really do is cruise the open water or go back.

6. Kayaks force you to exercise

Another added benefit of a kayak is the paddling that’s required to move the vessel. While you may be rolling your eyes at the extra work, the paddling motions provide a great upper-body workout. Talk about killing two birds with one stone!

7. Kayaks are much cheaper and easier to launch

Not only are the initial costs of a motor boat much higher than a kayak, there are other ongoing costs that inevitably come up. Also, fuel for a motor boat is expensive and you also have to find a launch spot that can accommodate your boat or store it at a marina, which all costs money and time. Kayaks on the other hand can be strapped to just about any vehicle and launched from just about anywhere. 

8. Kayaks are just more relaxing

When you own a motor boat, you take on a lot of responsibility, which can be stressful. It’s not just the financial cost – when you want to go out, you have to spend up to several hours getting everything ready, and then several hours after you get back. Kayaks are simple and allow you to do what you’re going to do – relax, fish and have fun. Many anglers who own a motor boat are often pretty stressed before they even make it to the water.

These 8 reasons and more are why many anglers are ditching their expensive, cumbersome and stressful motor boats and opting to fish from kayaks instead.

Derick Burgos of PhatFish Kayak Charters in Florida has been fishing from a kayak since his teenage years and can guide anglers of any level on the finer points of this exciting sport. Visit to learn more or to schedule a trip today! 

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